Jets Manage to Survive
The only way to describe the Jets 28-24 win over the Bills yesterday is lucky, the Jets absolutely didn't deserve to win the game yesterday. Despite the 4 touchdowns that Sanchez threw, he was absolutely awful. He threw one interception and probably should have thrown at least 3 more. Yet again the Jets turned the ball over on special teams, with Cromartie fumbling the ball away while trying to catch a Buffalo punt, this was the Jets 5th turnover on special teams, something that you would never expect from a Mike Westhoff coached unit. Lastly, and most surprisingly, Darrelle Revis had one of the worst games of his career. Revis Island looked more like Revis Runway, allowing Stevie Johnson to shake him loose and get open all game long. However despite all of these awful performances, there are still some positives that can be taken away from this game.
First and foremost the Jets offensive line showed glimpses of why it was considered to be one of the top units in the NFL coming into this season. The Jets ran the ball for 138 yards on 23 carries, and even more importantly they averaged 6.0 yards per carry. Just as importantly as their success run blocking, the Jets didn't give up a single sack to the Buffalo defense. This is incredibly important and points to the team going in the right direction, because in the past two games the Jets O-line had given up 8 sacks. If the O-line continues to play at the level they are capable of, it will allow the running game to continue to be successful, which will also allow for Sanchez to be more effective throwing out of play action.
While Revis did potentially have one of the worst games of his career, the Jets were still able to pull out a win. Stevie Johnson dropped what would have been the game winning touchdown on the Bills final drive. He had broken free of Revis and had a clear path to the end zone, however thankfully for the Jets he dropped the ball and the Jets live to die another day. We can presume that this is not the beginning of the end of Revis Island, so therefore we can expect that this will not be a problem in the future. Yes Revis, played awful, but it is unlikely that this will happen again for a long time.
The Jets can also take solace in the fact that yesterday it appeared as if Dustin Keller was reintroduced as Sanchez's go to receiver. While Santonio and Plaxico make up a very dynamic receiving core, it is much easier to shut down explosive wide receivers then it is to shutdown an explosive tight end. It is often said that a dog is a man's best friend, but in the football world it should be said that a good tight end is a quarterback's best friend. Dustin Keller's mix of size, speed and his incredible hands make him a match up nightmare.
The Last positive that the Jets can take away from this game is that despite having an awful game for the first 55 minutes of regulation, in the last 5 minutes Sanchez returned to his history of being a clutch QB. On the Jets game winning drive Sanchez led the Jets 82 yards down the field in 4 minutes and 43 seconds, completing a pass to Santonio for the game winning touchdown with about a minute left in the game. Granted it took an incredible circus catch by Plaxico Burress to set up the eventual game winning touchdown, but what matters is that Sanchez showed a glimpse of the comeback kid that got the Jets into the playoffs last year.
Despite the ugly win these are all good signs for the Jets and should show Jets fans that maybe they do have a chance to sneak into the playoffs for the third year in a row. Having said all that, the Jets still have a lot to work to do if they want to make the playoffs. They barely managed to get a win against a very damaged Buffalo team, and if they don't somehow fix their problems and fix them fast, there is no chance that we will be seeing the Jets in the playoffs come January.