The Jets are now 4-1 after a 34-20 defeat of Washington today at the Meadowlands. The victory assures first place will be on the line next week as Gang Green takes on the bitter rival Patriots. It was a sloppy first half for New York full of mistakes, but the Jets came out and dominated the second half to win this game in a laugher. Let's talk below about what went right.
Chris Ivory: Ivory is well on his way to a career year. He put up 196 yards from scrimmage today. 146 came on the ground. It was more of what we have seen all season. Even though Ivory has a reputation for being a bruising runner between the tackles, he again showed his underrated speed bouncing outside when the blocking up front doesn't hold and turning the corner. He also added 3 catches for 50 yards. Is Ivory a great receiving threat out of the backfield? No, but he has improved to the point where you can count on him to catch the ball if he slips into a route uncovered. That is more than you could say when the Jets traded for him. Right now this offense is built upon the talents of three skill players, and Ivory is just as important as any of them.
Brandon Marshall: This was Marshall's fourth straight 100 yard game. 100 yard games are not common in the NFL. The 1,000 yard mark in a season is typically used as the threshold defining top receivers. Getting there requires 62.5 yards per game. It isn't just that Marshall is making catches. He is making catches this season that should be incompletions, such as the touchdown he snatched off the ground to put the Jets up big in the third quarter.
Darrelle Revis: He was beaten for a touchdown early, but Washington did not have much success going after him beyond that. His interception in the third quarter was a game-changer. He baited Kirk Cousins and then made a nice break on the ball.
Demario Davis: I thought he was very active in run support and around the ball on his way to 7 tackles.
David Harris: He posted a team-high 11 tackles.
Calvin Pryor: Pryor has not been a star this year, but he has shown massive improvement and now looks like a quality starter. He registered 7 more tackles today. It is just as much about how he is getting his tackles. He is flying to the ball and cleaning up messes when there are breakdowns. He also has not been bad in coverage.
Marcus Gilchrist: Gilchrist made a couple of nice tackles and an excellent read and break on the ball for his interception.
Dexter McDougle: Thrown into the fire after Buster Skrine got hurt, McDougle held up extremely well and had a nice breakup on a fourth down.
Ryan Fitzpatrick: Every so often, Fitzpatrick has a game like this that makes you feel like he can be a quality starter. Thus far in his career, these have proven fleeting, but this was a really nice game for Fitz. His throws were mainly on target, one exception being Marshall's touchdown. Fitzpatrick also had a really nice scramble for a rushing touchdown. He has proven to be a better scrambler than I thought he would be. Fitz doesn't just run up the field. He reads his blocks and cuts accordingly.
Sheldon Richardson: He was responsible for a sack in his return, and it looked like he put Brandon Scherff on roller skates a couple of other times.
Zac Stacy: He had a few big plays spelling Ivory and then helped the Jets grind out late yardage to run out of the clock.
Damon Harrison: Snacks was a force in the middle of the defensive line shutting down Washington's run game. He wasn't just holding the point of attack as nose tackles do. He was shedding blocks and making plays.
Eric Decker: Decker's fumble contributed to the Jets immediately falling behind. Later, he had another near fumble. He also misplayed an onside kick. It wasn't a completely terrible game for Decker, He did register some important catches and to some degree made up for his misplay by stripping a Washington player trying to recover that onside kick. He just seemed out of sync, though.
Quinton Coples: It seems like he is disappearing off the face of the earth.
Punt Protectors: I couldn't tell exactly which person or people were to blame, but Washington should not get a free runner up the middle like that.
We're onto New England with first place on the line next week.