We have talked a lot about the advantage in field position the Jets have had this season, the game against New England aside. Certainly the defense has helped with the high rate it is forcing turnovers. The Jets have been excellent in one other area, covering kickoffs.
It has slipped under the radar because of the team's special teams troubles in other areas, namely punt coverage. The Jets have been very effective, however, on their kick coverage. They are allowing 22.8 yards per return, which is on the top half of the league. Opponents on average are starting drives after kickoffs on the 20. Essentially, the Jets are averaging a touchback on kickoffs. The thing is Nick Folk does not have a strong leg and in fact has the lowest touchback rate in the league. The coverage has held, though, and made Folk's limitations irrelevant. No opponent has returned a kick longer than 32 yards. No drive after a kickoff has started deeper than the Jets' own 39, and the drive that started on the 39 is the only one that went past the 30.
Who are the standouts on the kick coverage team? Jamari Lattimore and Marcus Williams lead with 4 and 3 tackles on kick coverage respectively. Below are the totals so far.