After a surprisingly stout opening week in Detroit, the Jets offensive line fell back to earth in a home opening loss to the divisional rival Dolphins. The ineptitude of the line in both the run and pass games played a role in the offense’s inability to find a groove and put a sufficient amount of points on the board.
Let’s look into who was guilty - and the diamonds in the rough from the game!
As I will always mention, it is impossible to capture everything with the stats, but with this series I hope to capture the most impactful plays accumulated by each linemen, both positive and negative, to help better our perspective on their production levels. Every single snap does matter, and here we will only be grading a small portion of those snaps, but this data can still help shape our opinions on players more properly and truly. Do not use these numbers as final judgement, but as useful evidence.
So far, I’ve been tracking:
- Stuffs (runs for 2 yards or less and no first down) allowed in the run game
- Rushing first downs assisted
- “Setup runs” assisted (which I now define as a 5+ yard pickup on 1st-3rd down that did not result in a first down). Despite not resulting in a first down, these kinds of pickups are still positive plays that deserve to be tracked.
- Sacks allowed
- QB hits allowed
- QB pressures allowed (New definition: pressure counts now include all throws affected by pressure, forced rollouts/dodged defenders, and forced throwaways)
- Deflections allowed (occurrences when allowing the currently engaged defender to bat/deflect a pass at the line)
- New category: Open field assists (blocking assists for significant extra yardage/first down by any player, OL or skill position, in the pass game while a pass receiver has the football)
- Pass blocking snaps (for primary 5 offensive linemen only: official pass attempts + sacks while on field)
- Penalties (Total accepted, yards, first downs/scores wiped out, and declined)
Here are the numbers for the Jets in Week 2!
Some takeaways from me before we take a look at some clips:
- Brandon Shell took a step back like the entire group did, but I still think he was the group’s best player. He was guilty for 3 minor pressures, but did not allow a hit, sack, or deflection for the second straight week. He also once again was not guilty for a single stuff, throwing in an assist each in the run game and in the open field in the pass game. Coming against a team he has struggled with, I liked what I saw for the most part. There is a saying that goes something like, “the offensive line is only as strong as its weakest link.” If Shell were the Jets’ weakest link in this game, it wouldn’t have been too bad a game. I like what I see from him.
- The interior could not open holes in the run in this game. James Carpenter was downright awful. Spencer Long had some nice moments but very low lows. Brian Winters took a step back. The Jets barely even bothered to run towards Kelvin Beachum. In a matchup that seemed favorable, the Jets were owned. 3 first downs to 13 stuffs is going to make scoring enough points to win a difficult task on any day.
- Rough day for him in the run game, but two games in and I haven’t hit Spencer Long for a sack, hit, or pressure yet (though he allowed a deflection in this game). The man is a very solid pass protector.
- Robby Anderson had 2 open field assists in the pass game. That’s a total of 3 assists for him through two games, tied with Eric Tomlinson for the lead among skill position players.
First, let’s look closer at some of the many destructive plays that were easily noticeable throughout the game.
Last week, the Lions sacked Sam Darnold with a stunt against the left side of the Jets line, James Carpenter and Kelvin Beachum. Carpenter did a decent job picking it up while Beachum was late to recognize it and whiffed to allow the sack. This week, the opposite occurred. Beachum quickly recognizes the stunt and passes off Robert Quinn, but Carpenter never sees it. Brian Winters also allowed penetration from William Hayes to shut down Darnold’s escape route.
Rich Gannon shows you where Quinn is coming from!
As good of a pass protector as Spencer Long was in Washington, the question has always been whether or not he can develop his run blocking. He didn’t hold them back at all in Detroit, flashing with a few lateral plays, but Long was a big part of the problem in the run game against Miami. When you see run plays get blown up behind the line while watching a game live, it’s usually because somebody was absolutely dominated off the ball. Those things happen so quick that they are very difficult to notice real time. Long is very slow out of the snap here and gives Isaiah Crowell no chance.
James Carpenter’s fit in this outside zone-based running scheme has always been a question mark, and he has done very little to answer those questions thus far. He is the weakest link of this unit right now. It’s quite the fall for a player who was once considered one of the team’s top few offensive players only a couple of years ago. There were numerous plays like the one below in this game. Carpenter was the main culprit for the run game’s struggles.
As mentioned, we saw some more Brandon Shell on the move. Here he leads Eric Tomlinson down the field for a 20+ yard gain on the screen. Spencer Long gets down the field for a key block as well.
Here’s my favorite block from a skill player. Nice job by Robby Anderson sealing his man out of the play to allow Quincy Enunwa to move the chains on this short screen play.
Here is a look at how the Jets are stacking up through 2 games.
What did you think of the Jets offensive line?
On a scale of 1 to 5, how confident are you in this offensive line?
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