Saturday, November 26, 2011

Week 12-Sad Sack

The picture on the left looks familiar, doesn't it?

Like any other Jets fan, I'm sick of the hangdog look that follows every crushing mistake. I fully understand that mistakes are unavoidable, I expect the quarterback to turn it over on occasion. I also expect him to make plays occasionally. Watching a quarterback make mistakes while failing to move the ball makes you feel like you're watching a rookie. This isn't what we were expecting as Jets fans when we took Mark Sanchez 5th overall in 2009. He is so tentative in the pocket, so absolutely flustered by the slightest bit of pressure, I've given up trying to defend him.

The whole offense is struggling. We're having problems maintaining a running game, keeping Sanchez from taking big hits, and getting separation on the outside. We're clearly worse on offense then we were last season. Always trying to bring in new skill people and thinking that everyone is going to coalesce and turn into the greatest show on turf is clearly folly. I used to believe that offensive line continuity was the most important part of offensive success, but, with the modern passing game relying mostly on a series of pre-snap adjustments, having receivers who are always on the same page with your QB is a big deal.

Just look at Green Bay. Watching the Packers school everyone they face speaks volumes about maintaining continuity with your offensive personnel. Aaron Rodgers is outstanding and crazy accurate with the football, but, their whole team is so crisp offensively, it's obvious that keeping the same core of skill people and developing them together is still the best way to succeed at the NFL level.

Anyway, the Jets limp back to MetLife at 5-5 after blowing the Broncos game, where they will face the also-collapsing Buffalo Bills, who are at 5-5 after being crushed the last 2 weeks by a combined score of 79-15. The Bills are facing a myriad of injuries to key people, including Fred Jackson, who was their most consistent offensive threat for most of the season. New York will need to finish at 5-1 in their last 6 to have a prayer at a postseason berth. The schedule over the last 6 games is not too difficult, but, when you're not playing well, every opponent is a tough game.

In the very least, we will know as a fanbase just how low we've sunk if we can not beat the Bills tomorrow. We've been able to control the line of scrimmage against Buffalo over the last few seasons. Having the ability to repeat this formula will be the key to the game. If the last few games are any indication, we won't be able to rely on Sanchez to fling it around the field. We must run the ball and stay in manageable distances for Sanchez, leaving him with easier throws to make. At this stage, I would be willing to accept any type of victory we can muster.

Kickoff tomorrow is at 1 pm.

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