The Jets finally broke their four game losing streak with a victory over the Baltimore Ravens in the Meadowlands. New York is now 2-5 on the season. What happened? Let’s talk about it below.
Sheldon Richardson: Muhammad Wilkerson’s injury seemed to make the Jets keep Richardson on the defensive line. That isn’t a bad thing. Richardson isn’t a movable chess piece. He is at his best when he is used as an unblockable force on the defensive line. He was constantly getting into the backfield and disrupting plays. Sheldon actually led the Jets with 8 tackles and a sack.
Julian Stanford: Injuries forced him into the lineup, but he held his own with 7 tackles.
Buster Skrine: It was a bit of a rough start early, but he made up for it with a big interception and some solid coverage in the second half.
Marcus Gilchrist: His interception proved to be a huge play in the game, a bright spot in what has been a disappointing season.
Calvin Pryor: After another rough first half, Pryor started to look like the 2015 Pryor in the second half, delivering big hits and making plays at the back of the defense.
Marcus Williams: A couple of the big third down completions on him weren’t pretty, but he atoned with the game on the line playing solid coverage and preventing a big completion on a deep ball late in the fourth quarter.
Steve McLendon: I thought he quietly controlled the line of scrimmage, consistently getting a push.
Lorenzo Mauldin: He quietly had a solid game, generating a number of pressures and showing nice bend off the edge. The Jets don’t need monster production from Mauldin, but his lack of progress this season has been a disappointment. Wilkerson’s injury gave him a chance to step into the starting lineup, and he took advantage.
Matt Forte: The Jets decided to lean heavily on the ground game on offense. Forte’s 100 yards on 30 carries won’t make for a spectacular average, but there is definitely value in a back who keeps the ball moving forward consistently and the offense out of long yardage situations. Forte added 54 yards on 4 receptions.
Brandon Marshall: It was not Marshall’s finest effort as he left a number of plays on the field, and his stat line was pedestrian. He makes the cut, however, because of how important his strip and recovery were on the goal line after it seemed like the Jets had fumbled away a golden opportunity. Instead, the team was able to score a big touchdown based on his effort.
Robby Anderson: Finally we saw some playmaking ability out of the preseason superstar. He took an end around for 30 yards. I thought his most important play, though, was the 28 yard reception in traffic to extend a drive. Every week to this point the rookie seemed to have one or two chances to make a big play to lift the team and could not deliver. This week he did.
Quincy Enunwa: Enunwa turned a routine completion into a spectacular touchdown with one of the best runs after a catch you will ever see.
Offensive Line: The sack totals make it seem like the line had a bad game, but Geno Smith and Ryan Fitzpatrick both took bad sacks. Just from the eyeball test, it felt like the line was giving the quarterbacks ample time and opening holes in the run game. Sometimes a prominent player getting benched lights a fire in a team. Sometimes putting a young quarterback into the lineup makes the line realize it has to step up. I don’t know whether either of these was the case with the Jets, but I was pleased with the line play.
Ryan Fitzpatrick: Geno Smith was asked to do so little before he left the game that I don’t know what to make of his play. I’m sure the Jets were eventually going to open things up, but things were so basic early to try and get him going that I can’t make heads or tails of his performance. I don’t have that problem with Fitzpatrick. I don’t think there’s anything he could have done that would have convinced me to put him back into the lineup, but he didn’t make much of a case anyway. After starting 7 for 7, he went back to being the same erratic quarterback making risky throws. It is tough to win with your quarterback barely completing anything in the second half. Despite a nice stat line, this was shaky quarterbacking.
Lac Edwards: The snap going through his hands was bad. Not just kicking the ball out of the end zone for a safety was worse.
Deon Simon: Unlike Nick Folk’s block in Week 1, a long kick that is blocked isn’t usually on the kicker. I thought Simon lost on his block and allowed the penetration that led to Folk’s second half field goal being blocked.
The Jets needed a win in the worst way. They got it. Now can they make it two in a row?