I’ll be straight with you, this was the hardest game I’ve ever had to rewatch. Towards the middle of the second half, I literally had to leave and get a slice of pizza despite not being hungry because it was painful to watch. I haven’t had this much trouble forcing myself to finish something on TV since Bojack Horseman released its new season (okay, that was pretty recent, but prior to that, let’s say the movie Compliance.) Watching live, somewhere around the end of the first half, I thought to myself, “The Jets are going to find a way to lose this game.” I’m not psychic, I’m not a pessimist, but I have watched enough of this Bowles/Maccagnan show to know that this team does not play complete games over 4 quarters, and no lead is safe. Just to drive the knife in deep, it had to be a 2 game losing streak heading into a week and a half without anything to wash the taste out of watching Baker Mayfield torching the Jets while Sam Darnold played miserably even by rookie standards. All you can do is hope that things will get better (thank goodness we get to play a team that narrowly missed the Super Bowl coming off a surprise loss.) Let’s just move on:
Bronze Star: RB Bilal Powell (14 rushes for 73 yards)
I have to admit, I’m a little biased with Powell. When he was drafted by the Jets, I misheard his name as Colin Powell and I’ve loved shouting Colin Powell! at the screen every time he gets the ball. That said, I’ve never really understood why the guy doesn’t get more love and why it always seems as though the Jets are trying to avoid giving him the ball. Even in a game where the offense totally imploded, Powell averaged over 5 yards per carry when he got the ball. He’s never averaged under 4 yards per carry in a season (not counting his rookie season with 13 totes) and his career average sits around 4.5 yards, which is better than some great backs like Le’Veon Bell, Frank Gore or Marshawn Lynch. He has 3 career fumbles (one as a rookie) one 742 carries and 199 receptions. I can’t remember him ever dropping a pass and he can be dangerous if you overlook him. He also pass protects quite well. This has turned into a love letter to Bilal Powell, but it’s really just because I don’t want to talk about the Browns game. Fine, on to the Silver Star.
Silver Star: LB Darron Lee (7 tackles)
Though he was part of a group that contributed to the second half collapse, Lee looked great during the first half. He had a couple of stuffs, got into the backfield when needed, and wasn’t a liability in coverage. Not many other players stood out, so he gets second billing. That’s really all there is to it.
Gold Star: LB Avery Williamson (7 tackles, 1.5 sacks)
This was a pretty good showing for Williamson, but considering how lethargic the rest of the team looked, that is easily enough to win a gold star. He looked pretty good even during the Jets second half collapse and managed to get pretty good pressure when rushing the passer. I really wish I could say more, but that’s about all I’ve got for our top performer. That speaks volumes about this game.
So there you have it, three weeks in and the table stands:
Darron Lee 4 points (2 silver)
Avery Williamson 3 points (1 gold)
Quincy Enunwa 3 points (1 gold)
Andre Roberts 3 points (1 gold)
Jamal Adams 3 points (1 silver, 1 bronze)
Bilal Powell 2 points (2 bronze)