Please enjoy this delightful song in reference to the title of this here post:
Good news boys and girls, for the first time this season, the New York Football Jets didn’t play in a ‘must win’ game. That means there no longer are crazy expectations, young guys can get some opportunities to show the team what they can contribute, and older guys can ease off the gas a little bit to preserve their bodies for next year.
After a decent game vs the Rams and a bye week, Bryce Petty was yanked from being QB1 for no apparent reason. Petty had signs of
brilliance competence, but it was obvious that he had some kinks to work out on the field. The main difference between Petty’s kinks and Ryan Fitzpatrick’s kinks is that Bryce Petty may have a future in this league, while Fitz is nothing more than a one-year placeholder for the franchise. I get that the big bad New England Patriots are in town and you don’t want to get embarrassed at home, but last time I checked, Bryce Petty hasn’t thrown 6 interceptions in an NFL game.
I’ll be fair, Ryan Fitzpatrick had himself a decent game (22/32, 269 yards, 2 TDs), but it was mostly due to WRs Brandon Marshall (6-67-1) and Quincy Enunwa (5-109-1) bailing him out with spectacular grabs. And, when the game was on the line with less than two minutes left, Fitzpatrick was strip-sacked by DE Chris Long.
This game was just the latest installment in ‘Tom Brady beats the Jets with little to no time left in the game.’ The past seven match ups between the Jets and the Patriots have been decided by 7 or less points, with the Pats winning 5 of them. Despite being visibly banged up and losing star TE Rob Gronkowski early, Brady threw 50 passes, completing 30 of them for 286 yards and 2 TDs. Despite not getting sacked, the Jets had pressure on Brady the entire game, and they had some ferocious hits on him.
The first possession of the game saw the New England Patriots get a favorable spot to convert on 3rd down, followed by a Tom Brady timeout. The Jets reviewed the spot upstairs and Todd Bowles had a rare successful challenge, forcing the Patriots to punt.
The Jets countered by marching right down the field, riding the coattails of WR Brandon Marshall. Him and Fitz connected on a beautiful corner route on 3rd and 4:
The drive ended with a 51-yard FG by Nick Folk.
The Patriots went back to the drawing board and ran a LeGarrette Blount reverse field play with Tom Brady himself leading the way. That’s a bold strategy cotton, let’s see how it pays off for him:
The result of the play was a first down, but the Patriots ended up having to punt again. Quincy Enunwa had his first catch of the year on the day at the end of the first quarter, which was the beginning of a long day for Patriots CB Malcolm Butler:
The first play of the 2nd quarter was a 1-yard ‘Mossed’ TD to Brandon Marshall:
Marshall had a spectacular first half, but then was a ghost in the 2nd half. It was reminiscent of the Seattle game where he had an early TD against Richard Sherman, but was then on the wrong side of two Sherman INTs later in the game.
After a Patriots FG to make it 10-3 Jets, rookie WR Robby Anderson made what turned out to be the game-changing mistake. After a nice 20-something yard gain, Anderson continued to try to make a play despite being in the vicinity of a half dozen defenders. Given his size, and general lack of understanding of how the NFL works, Anderson should’ve stepped out of bounds or kept the ball high and tight while getting tackled. You can’t hate on the rookie for trying to make a big play a huge play, but his inexperience really showed there. It was a heads up play by Malcolm Butler to go right for the ball as well.
Tom Brady did what Tom Brady does and turned that turnover into a touchdown reallll quick. This is when I knew the Jets were in trouble. You could go outside right now and drop a football on the ground just like he did and I guarantee it bounces every which way 9 times out of 10. Naturally, this ball bounces right into Brady’s hands as if he had a string attached to it and he finds rookie WR Malcolm Mitchell crossing in the middle of the end zone. In case you needed a refresher of how washed Darrelle Revis is, this game was more proof.
The Jets were driving again after the Patriots tied the game, but a no-call on what appeared to be defensive pass interference killed the drive. In perfect Jets fashion, Nick Folk’s 54-yard FG attempt was blocked by DT Alan Branch, who got really high. (Just kidding, he can’t jump. Just wanted to make a weed joke.)
The Patriots subsequently missed a FG at the end of the 1st half and the game remained tied at 10-10.
However, their first drive in the 2nd half did put 3 points on the board for New England, largely due to DE Muhammad Wilkerson hopping into the neutral zone on 4th and 1. Everybody and their mother knew what Tom Brady and the Pats were going to do. They do it a million times a year. They’ll line up on 4th and short and hard count until the play clock gets down to 1 or 2 seconds. Tom Brady did move most of his body on the count that drew Wilkerson offsides, but his head is literally on top of the ball. It was the first time Wilkerson’s name came up the whole game, and it was a terrible play for who should be the Jets premier defensive player.
The rest of the 3rd quarter was uneventful, and the Jets started the 4th quarter with the ball. They put together one of their best drives of the season, hitting Matt Forte for a good gain, Marshall for another 13 yards, and even incorporating TE Brandon Bostick for a play. Then came Quincy Enunwa’s second catch of the year on the day:
(If this game had a subtitle it would be Malcolm in the Middle because either Malcolm Butler or Malcolm Mitchell was in the middle of every touchdown scored.)
Enunwa had a phenomenal game. The only downside of this catch and his butt being what made him inbounds was the endless tweets bringing back memories of the ‘Butt Fumble.’
After the Patriots kicked a FG to make it a 1-point game, the Jets squandered their opportunity to ice the game largely in thanks to an intentional grounding call on Ryan Fitzpatrick. Stop me if you’ve heard this one before, Tom Brady gets the ball down one score with 5 minutes left in the game. Sure enough, the Patriots marched 83 yards on 9 plays, capped off by Malcolm Mitchell’s 2nd TD on Darrelle Revis.
Darrelle Revis is now the Jets’ family dog that they love too much to put down so they’re letting him live out his last days moving around all slow and mopey, a la Peyton Manning circa 2015.
Finally, down 5 with 2 minutes left, the game’s in your hands Ryan, what do you do!!??
AIDS. New England Patriots 22 @ New York Jets 17.
Next week, the Jets get to poison the nation’s eyes on Monday Night Football against the Indianapolis Colts. The Colts are 5-6 but are within striking distance in the AFC South. They were recently dismantled 28-7 on Thanksgiving, but that was without QB1 Andrew Luck. Luck has been in concussion protocol for over a week and a half now, but his availability for Monday is still in question. His availability probably is the difference between a win and a loss for the Jets. Luck has thrown for 2827 yards and 19 TDs, while backup QB Scott Tolzien looked overwhelmed Thursday night. The Colts are a pass heavy team and boast a great trio of WRs in TY Hilton, Donte Moncrief, and Phillip Dorsett. With a healthy Andrew Luck, the Jets could be in big trouble.
Prediction with Luck: Indianapolis Colts 31 @ New York Jets 24
Prediction without Luck: Indianapolis Colts 17 @ New York Jets 20
Now onto the awards from this week:
Quincy Enunwa (5-109-1)
Quincy is a motherfuckin’ starboy. The catches that he made in this game would be talked about for weeks if Odell Beckham wasn’t doing the same for New York wearing blue. Enunwa is becoming a more reliable target than Brandon Marshall. Look at the stats:
Despite seeing 25 less targets, Quincy has almost as money yards and receptions than Brandon Marshall. Also, Marshall’s catch rate is not good at all for a receiver of his caliber. Enunwa’s emergence this year now allows the Jets to explore other options pertaining to Marshall and Eric Decker this offseason.
LB Darron Lee (11 tackles, 1 pass defended)
2016 1st round pick Darron Lee had a strong outing against the Patriots while playing all 73 defensive snaps. Lee has been banged up a couple times throughout the year so it was reassuring to see him out there for an entire game against a physical team and a bruising RB in LeGarrette Blount. Although he didn’t get the challenge of defending Rob Gronkowski, Lee was strong in both pass and run defense and finally showed signs of why he was 1st round caliber talent.
Darryl Roberts (5 tackles, 1 pass defended)
Roberts, who was actually a 7th round pick out of Marshall by the Patriots in 2015, is better than Darrelle Revis. He went step for step down the seam with Rob Gronkowski on an incompletion and broke up a would-be touchdown to Malcolm Mitchell. I’m sure that he’ll have his inexperienced moments now and then, but this was a strong showing by the 2nd year player against the team that cut him in the preseason.
Darrelle Revis (5 tackles)
He got burnt by a 4th round rookie for 2 touchdowns against his former team. His talent is gone, his competitive edge is gone, and quite frankly, it looks like he doesn’t even want to be there.
There have been examples of plays like this ever since the Kansas City game by Revis. Not only is he getting torched on the field, he’s being vague about injuries and throwing other players under the bus instead of admitting his own defeat. Darrelle Revis should change his jersey number to 24/7 because receivers are open all day against him. This was Revis’ response to why Malcolm Mitchell was able to score the game winning TD:
The once great Clemson RB has no business being on this team. His role in the NFL has always been as a pass catching back, but the Jets already have Matt Forte and Bilal Powell, who are lightyears ahead of Spiller in the skills department. Spiller was also supposed to be an immediate factor in the KR game. He hasn’t done squat. To make matters worse, he dropped a wide open pass deep down the left sideline that easily could’ve ended in a TD, or at least a 40+ yard game. The Jets’ veteran players have been atrocious this year, which can be detrimental to the team’s younger guys as well.
Muhammad Wilkerson (2 tackles)
“Beast Mo” has been anything but a beast this year. Since his 1.5 sack showcase in Week 1, he has recorded 1 sack. This is the same man that had 12 sacks and forced 2 fumbles this year. With Leonard Williams’ rise to power and Sheldon Richardson’s somewhat consistent play, Wilkerson is leaving Jets fans wondering why they’re paying him all that money. Muhammad wasn’t even a factor in this game. All he did was jump into the neutral zone on 4th and 1 to give the Patriots a 1st down. He’s been missing meetings, he’s been reportedly feuding with Sheldon Richardson, and now his on the field product is downright embarrassing.
That’s all for this week, here’s some Jabrill Peppers highlights to get you geared up for #DraftSZN.