Following each Jets game this season, I’ll be participating in the post-game tradition of listing out the studs and duds of the Jets’ previous game — but with a new twist.
Each player listed, whether they were a stud or a dud, is capable of earning up to five points positively or negatively, depending on how good or bad their performance was. In total, the scores of each player listed will add up to match the Jets’ scoring margin from their game that week. This past Sunday, the Jets lost to the Dolphins by 8 points, so the combined point total of every player listed below will add up to -8.
At the end of the season, I’m hoping this scorecard system will help us get a good look at which players had the biggest impacts on the team, both positive and negative.
As an added note, no coaches (or general managers) will be involved in these lists.
The studs earn the privileges of having some nice colors attached to their name, while the duds merely get tagged with various levels of badness.
- Studs: Gotham Green (5 points), Platinum (4), Gold (3), Silver (2), Bronze (1)
- Duds: Level 5 (-5 points), Level 4 (-4), etc.
Here are my studs and duds from the Jets’ Week 9 loss.
Folorunso Fatukasi - Gold (3 points)
Yet again, the Jets defense dominated in the run game, allowing just 50 yards and three first downs on 24 attempts (2.1 per attempt). The Jets are ranked second in run defense DVOA, first in run defense EPA, and first in fewest yards per rush attempt allowed (3.1).
As per usual, Fatukasi was in the middle of that success. How about this play?
Or this one?
Fatukasi is battling it out with Steve McLendon for the title of best Jets defensive lineman this season. Not only that, he has a good argument for best defensive player on the team. Maybe even best player on the entire team. Yeah, it’s been that kind of season.
The Long Island native has seamlessly carried over his impressive preseason play into the regular season. His snap timing and strength are both extremely impressive.
Jamison Crowder - Gold (3 points)
Crowder grabbed eight of nine targets for 83 yards. He caught his first touchdown of the season and added four more first down conversions.
In five games with Sam Darnold, Crowder has averaged 7.0 catches for 66.0 yards and 3.4 first downs. That first downs per game average would be good enough to rank top-20 among wide receivers if maintained over the entire season (Julian Edelman is currently averaging 3.4 first down catches per game).
Steve McLendon - Bronze (1 point)
McLendon does the dirty work that makes the dominant run defense happen. He created penetration that opened up opportunities for teammates to clean up a few run stuffs.
Ryan Griffin - Bronze (1 point)
I still can’t get around Griffin’s awful blocking, but he is coming to life as a receiver. He caught six of eight targets for 50 yards and three first downs against Miami.
Late in the first half, Griffin made a sweet grab for a touchdown, but it was called back after review due to a slight bobble after he came to the ground. That led to a wild chain of events immediately afterward: a bad interception by Darnold, a safety taken by Miami, and a quick field goal drive by the Jets to end the half.
Nate Hairston - Level 1
Hairston was tagged with allowing six catches on eight targets for 74 yards and five first downs, one of which was a contested back-shoulder grab by DeVante Parker. The Joe Douglas pickup has been mostly promising, but it was definitely a big stock-dropper to see him victimized so easily by a terrible offense.
Jamal Adams - Level 1
Adams had a sack and made some good plays against the run, but he had one bad missed tackle and also seemed to be the culprit on a busted coverage that allowed Preston Williams to score an unbelievably wide open touchdown.
James Burgess - Level 2
Burgess was schooled by Mike Gesicki for two big first down catches and also took some bad angles in run defense that led to Miami’s biggest runs of the game. These things are going to happen when a team is knocked down to its fifth inside linebacker.
Sam Darnold - Level 2
Darnold was not awful in this game, but the one interception he threw was about as bad as it gets.
When kept clean, Darnold made some really solid throws, especially early in the game. He missed some throws, but his accuracy was decent overall. Decision-making was more of an issue.
This 3rd & 2 play caught my eye. Darnold tried to force a ball up the seam to Ryan Griffin right in between the safety up top and the trailing linebacker (predictably, it fell incomplete). Meanwhile, Vyncint Smith was clearly about to be wide open on the post to the left side. On the other side, with the safety already bearing down on Griffin, Robby Anderson had a clear path to the end zone as the corner opposite him was playing underneath. Even if he ignored those two options, Darnold could have easily dumped it off to Le’Veon Bell, who had a clear path to the sticks in front of him.
I think Darnold could really benefit from utilizing a pump fake in situations like this one. With a pump up the middle to Griffin, Darnold would likely have an easy touchdown to Anderson. It also may have opened up even more room for Bell underneath.
The Jets went for it and converted on the next play, so perhaps Darnold decided to take a shot knowing the team would be running another play if they did not convert. Even so, there were three better options on this crucial third down play, and Darnold picked the fourth-best target out of the five available.
Darnold was not brutal, but he was not nearly sharp enough given the quality of the opponent. Prior to the Jets game, the four good quarterbacks Miami had faced (Lamar Jackson, Tom Brady, Dak Prescott, and Philip Rivers) absolutely shredded them. The three below-average quarterbacks they faced (Case Keenum, Josh Allen, Mason Rudolph) were mediocre against them.
Darnold’s performance lumps in with the latter group.
Chuma Edoga, Alex Lewis, Jonotthan Harrison, Brian Winters, Brandon Shell - Level 2
I’d like to score each of these players lower, but here we are met with the constraints of this scoring system.
The problems with this unit are often less so about players losing one-on-one (although that does happen extremely frequently as well), but more about inexplicable communication issues. It’s surprising that this has been the case, since Frank Pollack was one of the league’s most successful and respected offensive line coaches over the past decade or so.
Darryl Roberts - Level 2
Roberts allowed five of nine targets in his direction to be caught for 72 yards and four first downs (one of those a touchdown to Preston Williams).
Here is a look at the Week 9 scorecard.
Here is a look at the scorecard throughout the season to date.