The Bills game offered us hope and signs of weaknesses with the 2016 Jets. They seemingly drove the ball at will and only didn't score on one drive-- a kneel down at the end of the half. Let's take a look at some of the key plays.
Obviously we've started to question Revis and his island that seems to be taking on water. He's not in man to man against Goodwin, but it's his responsibility to cover him on the long touchdown. After reviewing the film, there's no way that you can blame anyone else but him for the TD.
The Bills lined up with three wide, one WR wide to each side with a slot receiver on the right of Taylor. The Bills play nearly a max protect with only a 3 man route, two deep go routes and a route in the middle that was likely a read route--based off of the defense that the Jets played.
The Jets counter with a pretty basic but big play preventing (or in theory) zone defense. It's cover 4 with 4 men deep including the two corners and the safeties splitting the field into 4 quarters. Three other defenders drop into zone coverage underneath. Revis is defending the far sideline and will not get help over the top.
Revis obviously never quite gets into position for the deep route. He probably anticipated a deep comeback route and was watching the QB the entire way. Two things: either he totally ignored the deep route thinking there's no way they go over the top, or completely botched how fast Goodwin was. Looking at the film, I have a feeling it's the first. He's trying to eye the QB to jump a stop route that never materializes. Instead Goodwin flies by him.
Perhaps the Revis of old would have caught up to the pass. Those days have since passed. I understand him not wanting to get beat underneath and give up a cheap first down on a deep route that cuts underneath him. The problem is that he can't quite catch up like he used to be able to do. He can't anticipate short and react deep. It's definitely going to be interesting to see how the Jets work on this with him.
Let's get to the good; shall we? Forte had three rushing TD's although the first was arguably a result of the short yardage situation and a decent double team up front.
The Jets run a simple zone read concept with the FB running counter block to the play. He's charged with the weak side linebacker while the rest of the O line either cut blocks or doubles down up front. Basically this is typical short yardage. Beat the defense or at least stalemate them and hope your running back hits the hole faster than the linebackers. The man in red for the Bills makes a heroic play to nearly stop this TD from happening.
The Jets get a solid push from up front in the form of Mangold and the right guard. The left guard attempts to cut his man down. Meanwhile the FB tries to get to the second level to get the linebacker. The hole is opened pretty early basically where Mangold snapped the ball, directly up the gut.
You can see the gaping hole Forte had up the middle. It was quickly closed by the DL who evaded a pretty mediocre cut block on the left side. The left guard didn't quite get the defender off his feet but did just enough to allow the hole to be opened. Forte favors the right side with the congestion because he notices the DL getting through the block. The DL gets to him right on the goal line and the Jets just barely got a TD.
Sometimes you just trust players to make plays. The Jets trusted the guys up front to stalemate at the worst and the double team to give just enough push for a short score. Forte read it right and was just quick enough to make it to the end zone before a linebacker could get into him or the DL could shed the block.
The second TD was a combo of a good call and Fitz staying in just long enough to deliver a pitch and catch TD. It's a perfect call in short yardage, a neigh unstoppable route and a great pass in the heat of pressure.
The play is really a one man route as Marshall doesn't even bother to run a route. I've seen him do this before only to "play possum" and go for a fade route. On this one, he doesn't do much. Decker runs a three yard slant and it's basically up to him to beat the defender. To set it up, the Jets run play action with Forte.
Decker runs a perfect route and gets the defender to take one false step up. The defender never recovers as Decker slants hard to the middle. Up front the protection holds other than the one defender in red. I think Forte probably was selling the fake rather than blocking but the defender gets a free run at Fitz. It's a question of timing, does the defender beat the pass, or can Fitz throw it?
Fitz takes a heck of a hit and throws a pass slightly behind Decker. It's easily catchable, but if the CB was a bit closer it's the type of throw that can get knocked down or intercepted if the CB gets a big enough jump. In this case the pass was solid but not perfect. With the defender all over him, Fitz delivered a perfectly good enough pass to Decke.
On replay I mentioned how the pass wasn't perfect in the game thread. I didn't realize how close the defense came to making a stop based off of the one defender getting a free run. Perhaps Forte could have chipped the man, but that could have blocked the passing lane. Either way it was good to see Decker undress a defender on a quick play that was nearly unstoppable once he got by him.