The game plan for success with New York Jets is simple, and it has never changed under head coach Rex Ryan and shaky fourth year Quarterback Mark Sanchez. Get a lead, and run the ball straight down the opponents throat. Let your defense work, and control the clock. As the New York Jets pummeled the Indianapolis Colts 35-9 Sunday afternoon, that was precisely the case.
When Mark Sanchez connected with Stephen Hill on a five yard touchdown strike early in the second quarter, the Jets did something they had failed to do in the previous nine quarters of football, hold a lead. There was no turning back from this point. The Jets returned directly to their winning formula and Greene exploded, running the ball 32 times for 161 yards and three touchdowns. Not only were there open lanes to run, but Greene did something he couldn’t all season, break tackles.
Sure, the Jets faced a much less threatening defense in the Colts, but this was a magnificently dominating performance. With the return of Tight End Dustin Keller, the struggling Jets Offensive Line undoubtedly had their best game of the season. Although his presence wasn’t felt in the passing game, the boost Keller gave to the line was beyond noticed.
After battling through their most difficult part of the schedule, the Jets find themselves sitting at 3-3 and tied atop the AFC East with, everyone. It has been a roller coaster of a season already, but Jets fans can take a much needed deep breathe.
Let me ask you this, when our schedule was released, weather we had Revis and Holmes or not, did you honestly think we would beat Pittsburgh, Houston, and San Francisco? What the Jets have done thus far is beat every opponent they are “supposed” to beat. Now, the schedule is more favorable and we will be playing in many more games we are “supposed” to win.
This week the Jets face, to everyone’s surprise, a struggling New England Patriots team, in a battle to establish dominance among the parity riddled AFC East. The defense will have their work cut out for them trying to maintain pace with Josh McDaniel’s no huddle offense featuring possibly the two best Tight Ends in the NFL, and a significantly improved rushing attack.
Containing both Gronkowski and Hernandez will be near impossible for a much slower, less athletic Jets Linebacking core. In addition to this, you now have to protect against Running Backs Stevan Ridley and Brandon Bolden. The two backs have combined for six touchdowns and 758 yards through six games this season. The good news is, after letting Buffalo’s CJ Spiller run rampant on them, the Jets have been stellar against the run.
With Joe McKnight and Bilal Powell inactive this week the Jets opted against singing a Running Back to spell Shonn Greene. This says one thing, prepare for a heavy dosage of Tim Tebow. Tebow should be in the game as a running back a significant amount this week, and most specifically in short yardage situations. The Jets haven’t flashed much of their Wildcat package this season, and one has to believe Rex and Sparano have been saving it for this day, a game where every trick in the bag may be necessary to win
If the Jets are successful against the Patriots they are going to have to jump out to an early lead like they did against Indianapolis, or worse case maintain a one score game. Forcing Sanchez to come from behind could prove disastrous once again against Belichick’s squad. An early lead will allow the Jets to control the tempo of the game through their “ground and pound”. A lead will also give the Jets many more opportunities to utilize their full Wildcat package.
The Defense will have to shut down one of the two Tight Ends, while eliminating the run game. The Patriots don’t have a Wide Receiver dangerous enough to beat the Jets down the field, not to mention Anotonio Cromoartie has been playing the best football of his life since Revis went down, so the focus will remain on the Tight Ends and Running Backs.
The Jets have a very challenging task at hand once again, but the potential of this team is known. In a season where Pete Prisco predicted the Patriots to go 16-0, anything is possible. Sitting atop the AFC East with a 3-0 division record will go a long way in setting the Jets up for a run at the playoffs.