We all know the story by now, unless you were avoiding every media and news outlet as you grieved this lost game. It's 4th and 4 on the Green Bay Packers 36, time is about to tick below 5 minutes remaining and the Jets are down 31-24. The team line-ups but there is a problem, Bilal Powell is lined up in the wrong position. This worried Marty and on such an important play he didn't want us to be unprepared and have the incorrect alignment, this is perfectly reasonable and I would hope any coach would try and get things sorted.
So instead of let the play go, Marty starts running up the sideline to try and get the attention of Rex Ryan. As you know, only the head coach and an on-field player can call a timeout. The playclock ticked below 15 secounds, meaning Marty could no longer communicate with Geno Smith per NFL rules. Rex Ryan has tuned into the defensive frequency to get his players ready if the 4th down is not converted. Marty, before reaching Rex realizes that Geno has corrected the incorrect alignment and a timeout is no longer needed:
"We're rolling; we're good. I didn't even get Rex's attention yet," Mornhinweg said. "That's the scenario."
Unfortunately, Sheldon Richardson had seen the offensive coordinator running down the line trying to get Rex's attention. Trying to help and believing he was saving the Jets from a broken play, Sheldon calls the timeout. NFL officials are told not to turn around to look for who called the timeout, so really there wasn't a great deal the official could do. The play ran, everyone looked to be going full speed and Kerley pulls in what may have been his career catch to tie the game. Unfortunately the timeout had been granted and the play was negated.
"Sheldon needs to take no accountability for that," Mornhinweg said. "He was only trying to help."
"If you think you can help," Ryan said, "you react like that."
I really can't blame Sheldon for this. He sees his offensive coordinator frantically trying to get the time-out, this is a veteran coordinator who knows the game inside out. He wants to help so he calls the timeout, the action he thought the team would want him to do. Had the ball been intercepted or Geno been sacked, we would be delighted with the play. Unfortunately it just so happened it resulted in a touchdown.
"I've got to do a better job of communicating, and then trusting Big Geno," he said. "I've got to trust Geno to get everything fixed before the 40-second clock (expires)."
This is an interesting note. Had this been a veteran QB, this likely doesn't happen. However lets look at the positive here. Geno realized that the alignment was incorrect, he ensured it was corrected before the snap, he received the correct protection as a result. I like that Geno was able to go this and although it feels terrible that this negated the touchdown which could have led to a victory, this is very much lesson learned. Trust Geno more.
Series of Events
* Bilal Powell lines up Incorrectly
* Marty Spots this, tries to get Rex's attention.
* Rex has tuned into defensive frequency to get the defense ready.
* Play clock is under 15 seconds, no communication allowed in the QB helmet.
* Geno spots Bilal Powell lined up incorrectly and corrects it.
* Marty spots this and stops trying to get Rex's attention
* Sheldon Richardson doesn't realize, calls time-out.
* Official hears the call from behind him and grants the time-out
* At the same time, the Jets run the play and score a touchdown that is negated.