Week 2 Thoughts - Same Trends Continue

I wrote about this last week. Don't know who read it, but I'm going to continue writing because it makes me feel better to put it out there. There are things that occurred in week 1 that occurred in week 2. The first week it didn't matter because it was a blowout, but week 2 it cost us a game. These are things that I see when looking at the game, that I'm sure others see as well. If you're up for reading, these are my two cents.

Sam Darnold

Starting with him because he's the hot topic. He threw for over 300 yards, and 1 TD and 2 INT's in his second pro start. He should have had two touchdowns and one interception. Below is video of the 2nd interception Sam threw.

Xavien Howard intercepts Sam Darnold pass in the end zone

Darnold released the pass with the DB shadowing Pryor's outside shoulder protecting against the corner fade route. There was single coverage from the safety who was basically standing in front of the goal post. That gave Darnold and Pryor almost half the endzone behind the linebackers to play with. Terrelle Pryor, for all the hype he gets ran a crappy post route, let the defender beat him to the spot, and let the defender cross him. He rounded his route , rather than trying to plant his foot and explode out of his cut. The net result is news columnists saying Darnold had a poor throw and bad decision making. His decision making and anticipation were good all game. I don't fault him.

Terrelle Pryor

The above rant leads me to Terrelle Pryor. He is big, he is fast, and he makes highlight real catches. He cannot however run disciplined routes. He is not quick either, and he has deep speed, but it's wind up speed. He doesn't have short area quickness. i bring this up because neither does Robby Anderson. They are both fast, but they can't regularly beat man coverage on any designed play on a 3 step drop, unless the defender is playing 10 yards off the ball.

Jets Passing Offense

The passing offense is based on a lot of 3 step drop and throws, bubble, and mid screens. I don't know if anyone else has noticed but about 1/4 of the passes Darnold has thrown he drops back his 3 steps, never finds an open receiver, and then extends the play and throws on the run. He's extending the play because those long striders Anderson and Pryor cannot regularly get separation in the first 2 or 3 seconds which is throwing off Darnold's timing while he's pump faking and sliding up and around the pocket. I think Enunwa is getting the bulk of the passes because he has the most burst, and short area quickness.

From this observation I would expect two things. The first is for Jermaine Kearse to move up to 3rd on the depth chart with Pryor sliding to 4th. He will also start to eat into Enunwa and Pryor's catches as the season moves forward. The second thing I'm going to guess is that Ardarius Stewart who is returning from a two game suspension will have some value. He is quicker than both Anderson and Pryor in a phone booth, though not faster. So even though he can't catch, he potentially has the ability to get open on quick hitter plays. If he can catch the ball is another question. I'm basing this mostly on the Redskins Jets joint practices this summer in which Jermaine Kearse and Stewart routinely got open faster, and more frequently in WR DB drills and goal line drills as well. Look for Stewart to join the team, and a cut coming as either Jordan Leggett or a mild surprise in Eric Tomlinson who has under performed.

Same issues on Defense

Buster Skrine got beat on a drag route which turned into a touchdown. Last week Trumaine Johnson got beat on motion routes that turned into drag routes or in routes crossing the field 5 and 10 yards deep. The same problem has reared its head in that the Jets cannot seam to properly defend underneath crossing and drag routes where faster players are getting open and running for tons of yards after the catch.

Buster Skrine

The mind is willing but the body isn't able. He is a hard worker, but he is losing athleticism, speed, and quickness and you can see it. he seems a step slow, and because of his small stature he's getting pushed around, and called for penalties trying to bring down open runners. Worth seeing how this season develops for him, but hoping he can turn things around from his pedestrian play.

Short Turnaround

The Cleveland Browns are up on Thursday, so it will be nice to get this loss behind us with a win against the Browns. If I were Cleveland though, I'd play tough press coverage. This would remove the screens the Jets love to do because they can't run quick routes. playing press all game would delay the receivers long enough for Myles Garrett, Jamie Collins, and Ogbah to put pressure on Darnold.

I'd also have Jarvis Landry in motion on every play getting him the ball on short drag, slant, and dig routes and try to make plays against man coverage. Finally, expect Tyrod Taylor to bootleg, and rollout with stacked formations to give more time for receivers to come open on crossing routes where he can run or throw to free releasing receivers to run after the catch. Lastly they'll try to bash Carlos Hyde and Nick Chubb up the middle after watching the Dolphins do it in week 2.

With all that being said, we loved Fitzpatrick 3 years ago when he was throwing 2 TD's and 1 interception every game. Darnold's rookie season could look something like that, and if the stars all line up, we could be looking at 10-6 with a shot at the post season.

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