Jets Part 2. The New York club is off to an awful start with a 1-4 record mainly due to the inconsistencies of starting QB Zach Wilson. They are coming off the Bye after their loss to the Atlanta Falcons in London. That means they have had 9 days to prepare and get healthy. The Bye is a huge factor in this game. Their lone victory was against the Tennessee Titans (how is that possible)!
|QB||Zach Wilson||Mike White||–||–|
|RB||Michael Carter||Ty Johnson||Tevin Coleman||La’Mical Perine|
|WR||Corey Davis||Elijah Moore||Jeff Smith||–|
|WR||Jamison Crowder||Braxton Berrios||–||–|
|WR||Keelan Cole||Denzel Mims||–||–|
|TE||Tyler Kroft Q||Ryan Griffin||Trevon Wesco||Daniel Brown|
|LT||George Fant||Chuma Edoga||Mekhi Becton IR||Parker Ferguson IR|
|LG||Alijah Vera-Tucker||Dan Feeney||–||–|
|C||Connor McGovern||Dan Feeney||–||–|
|RG||Greg Van Roten||Dan Feeney||Isaiah Williams||Cameron Clark IR|
After Jets GM Joe Douglas traded away Sam Darnold to Carolina, they were committed to rookie Zach Wilson. I would have kept Darnold and let Wilson learn under him for a year. Remember, the GOAT Tom Brady had a year under Drew Bledsoe before he became the starter, and that was only because Bledsoe got hurt. Generally, rookies make lots of mistakes. Wilson is a typical rookie. The last time these teams met, Wilson threw 4 Interceptions and no TDs. It’s Zach Wilson’s inconsistencies that are making the Jets a dysfunctional offense. In Pro Football Focus’s rankings, Wilson is 29 of 32 starters. He has a season-low 49.8 passing rating and a 37.0 QB rating.
We can’t put all the blame on Wilson. Offensive Coordinator Mike LaFleur’s play-calling leaves a lot to be desired. In all 5 games, the Jets have been off to slow starts. In fact, they have not scored a point in the 1st Quarter of any of those games. Given they have had 9 days to prepare and another 4 to practice for this game, I expect the Jets to come out on fire, especially against our porous secondary.
The O-line has been a problem for the Jets, especially RG Greg Van Roten. LG Alijah Vera-Tucker was under consideration by the Pats coaching staff for selection at the #15 pick. He was selected by the Jets one pick before the Patriots at #14. Thankfully they didn’t trade it to a team hungry for a QB and the Pats elected Mac Jones. George Fant is a big man at LT, but he is limited and I think the Pats Matt Judon could expose him. They lost stud Tackle Mekhi Becton to IR just before the 1st Patriots game (week 2).
These receivers are not the Dallas Cowboys wide receivers (thank god). The wideouts have a lot of talent, Corey Davis is the number one target of Wilson. Davis has 20 catches on 36 targets (nearly as many incompletions as receptions). Is that Wilson’s fault, probably? Davis is averaging 15.1 yards per catch, for 302 yards and 3 TDs. Jamison Crowder is a very consistent slot receiver that has put up big catch numbers the last two seasons. He has only played 2 games and has 11 catches on 15 targets for 85 yards and a TD. Former Patriots draft pick Braxton Berrios is #2 in receptions with 16. The Jets have been waiting for Denzel Mims to breakout, He has 3 catches in 4 targets for 73 yards and a 24.3 yards per reception average, 0 TDs. This year’s speedster is Elijah Moore. He ran a blistering 4.35 40 and a 6.67 3-cone drill in pre-draft workouts. In just 8 games at Mississippi last year he had 83 catches for 1193 yards and 8 TDs. That was against SEC competition! They are a big threat if Wilson can get them the ball. Another speedster is former BC WR Jeff Smith. He has 2 catches for a 24 yard per catch average. Smith has been out with a concussion but practiced this week and should be available this week.
The Running Back position has been a mixed bag. Veteran Tevin Coleman started the year at RB. Everyone knew he was keeping the seat warm. The Jets are still waiting on rookie Michael Carter from North Carolina to take the position. Ty Johnson has had his opportunity but injuries have slowed him down. Look for Johnson to get his touches too. Carter catches the ball well and has 9 catches so far. I don’t know why LaFleur is not using Coleman on 3rd down. He has a very good track record of being a reliable 3rd down back. He has only 2 catches.
Ryan Griffin and Tyler Kroft are the TEs. They contribute very little and Kroft is likely headed to the IR before the game. He missed both Wednesday and Thursday practices.
|LDE||John Franklin-Myers||Kyle Phillips O||Carl Lawson IR||–|
|LDT||Sheldon Rankins||Folorunso Fatukasi||Jonathan Marshall||–|
|RDT||Quinnen Williams||Nathan Shepherd||–||–|
|RDE||Bryce Huff||Shaq Lawson||Tim Ward||Vinny Curry O|
|WLB||Blake Cashman||Hamsah Nasirildeen IR||–||–|
|MLB||C.J. Mosley Q||–||–||–|
|SLB||Quincy Williams||Jamien Sherwood||Del’Shawn Phillips||Jarrad Davis IR|
|LCB||Brandin Echols||Javelin Guidry||Isaiah Dunn||–|
|SS||Ashtyn Davis||Adrian Colbert||Lamarcus Joyner IR||–|
|FS||Sharrod Neasman||Marcus Maye Q||Zane Lewis IR||–|
|RCB||Bryce Hall||Michael Carter II||Justin Hardee||Jason Pinnock|
Let’s start with the Jets Defensive Line. They can dominate at times. Quinnen Williams is a disruptive threat. The emerging star is John Franklin-Myers at LDE. They can put pressure on the QB and are ranked 9th in that department. They are also tied for 14th with 13 sacks. They haven’t held any team under 100 yards rushing, but the closest was against the Pats with 101. We should see a revamped O-line by the Patriots as they get injured / COVID players back.
The Linebacker position has been a shuffle due to injuries. Leading tackler ILB CJ Mosely didn’t practice on Wednesday or Thursday due to a hamstring injury. He has been receiving treatment over the extended Bye week and will be considered as Questionable and a game-time decision. Last year he had a groin injury and came back too soon and re-injured it. I think they will be a little more cautious with the Hamstring injury. Jamien Sherwood and Javelin Guidry are capable backups.
The secondary will be boosted by the full participation of S Marcus Maye who has been out the last two games. Ashtyn Davis is also a strong player at Safety. Former Patriots player S Adrian Colbert has played well for the Jets filling in for both Davis and Maye. I thought Colbert played well enough to make the team and I think they regret keeping Jojuan Williams over Colbert. The Jets have allowed the fewest number of touchdowns through the air.
|P||Thomas Morstead||Braden Mann IR||–||–|
|H||Braden Mann IR||–||–||–|
|PR||Braxton Berrios||Keelan Cole||Michael Carter||–|
|KR||Braxton Berrios||Keelan Cole||Michael Carter||Tevin Coleman|
The Jets Special Teams are very good. They are 3rd in Kickoff Return yardage with a 26.3 average. They are 4th in Punt Return average at 13.3. The third area they are excelling is at Punt Return yards allowed and rank 18th.
The Jets haven’t beaten the Patriots in Foxboro since the 2010 playoffs. They also haven’t beaten them at all since 2015.
What must the Patriots do?
The Patriots need to be more consistent, more disciplined. DO YOUR JOB! Know your assignment and execute it. The Patriots should have Michael Owenu back at RT. If Shaq Mason can go at RG, that will free up Ted Karras to move back to LG. Wynn will be another week removed from COVID. This will be the Patriots’ best O line since they started the season. Cohesion amongst the O-lineman can go a long way. The Patriots didn’t try one screen pass last week because it is so hard to pull off with a mis-mashed line.
Get pressure on the Jets young QB. He makes mistakes!
Take the clamps off Mac Jones and get Jonnu Smith involved in the offense. TE screen, TE out of the backfield, just get the ball in his hands. On that big catch by Rhamondre Stevenson down the seam, it was Smith lined up at LHB in the backfield with Stevenson. The fake run was to Smith and Stevenson beat all-world LB Micah Parsons for the 20 yard gain. However, Smith was also open in the flat and he was “covered” by ILB Leighton Van Der Esch. Van Der Esch was in the middle of the field and not within 20 yards of Smith. They never came back to this play.
Continue to run the ball, have makeable 3rd and short plays, and keep drives alive.
Win the possession battle.
TD’s rather than FG in the red zone.
Win the turnover battle.
Just do the little things that Patriots teams do to win games!
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