The New York Jets were not expected to win today against the defending Super Bowl champion Kansas City Chiefs. The Jets were not even expected to be competitive. They did not disappoint. In another in a long string of dreary blowout losses, the Jets put up a fight for one half of the game before devolving into their default inept mode in the second half. With another show of brutally offensive offense producing less than 230 yards of total offense, and a defense that was helpless against Patrick Mahomes’ brilliance, the Jets never really had a chance in this game. It’s becoming a weekly refrain for this pathetic excuse for a football team.
Pierre Desir was his usual doesn’t-belong-in-the-NFL self. The offensive line was its usual sieve in pass protection. The running game produced its usual 3 yards and a cloud of suck results. Is there anything this team does well?
Lets take a look at what went right and what went wrong in this latest loss.
Quinnen Williams. Williams was disruptive again today. He got a big hit on Patrick Mahomes on third down, and he blew up a screen pass for a big loss. It wasn’t a wreck the game performance, but beggars can’t be choosers. Quinnen goes in the good column.
Sergio Castillo . Castillo scored all of the Jets points, with field goals of 39, 48 and 55 yards. His only miss was a blocked kick on a blown blocking assignment.
Where do we begin? It was almost all bad. A few performances stood out.
Pierre Desir. Burned on a long touchdown pass, as usual. Whiffed on a tackle that led to a big Travis Kelce catch and run. Blew the coverage on a Chiefs’ fake punt that kept a drive going, leading to a Chiefs’ touchdown. Gave up a 15 yard reception on 3rd and 14, as usual. How does this guy still have a job?
Blessuan Austin. Austin usually plays well as long as the play is in front of him. Unfortunately he is prone to letting guys get behind him and giving up a lot of long balls. Today was no exception, as Austin was burned on two long touchdown passes. If he can’t clean this up Austin may not have a future as a starter in this league.
Ashtyn Davis . Davis got taken to school as he bit hard on a screen pass, leading to a big play by the Chiefs. He lost coverage on a Tyreek Hill move and got turned around, leaving Hill wide open for an easy touchdown. This was not a great debut for Davis as a starting safety.
The Jets’ interior offensive line. Sam Darnold was under heavy pressure most of the game, much of it coming straight up the middle. The Jets interior line was manhandled by Chris Jones and friends.
Braxton Berrios. 11 targets and 8 receptions produced a pathetic 34 yards. Berrios has had plentiful chances to prove he’s an NFL caliber receiver this year. He has not impressed.
Jeff Smith. 8 targets produced 29 yards. Ugly. Like Berrios, this guy is not an NFL caliber receiver.
Chris Herndon. Herndon’s only reception of the game resulted in a lost fumble. What the heck has happened to this guy? He can’t get open, he can’t catch, and he can’t hold onto the few balls he does catch. Sheesh. A career that started with such promise is now in jeopardy of ending soon. I’m not sure Herndon deserves another start in this league. As bad as Ryan Griffin is, he doesn’t hurt the Jets as much as Herndon does almost every week. How do so many promising Jets young players fizzle and fade away, over and over again?
Sam Darnold. The Jets’ paltry offensive production was not all Darnold’s fault. Far from it. He was under heavy pressure, and for the most part dealt with it by getting rid of the ball quickly and decisively. He avoided the usual Darnold what-the-heck-was-he-thinking plays. So some progress. But in the end, Darnold produced yet another game with no touchdown passes and well under 200 yards passing. The Jets offense never threatened to score a touchdown. Yes, Darnold is handicapped by his surrounding cast, but at some point he has to step up and transcend, if only for a game or two. He’s got to find a way to score touchdowns, which he rarely does. It wasn’t a terrible performance, but well into his third season, not terrible doesn’t cut it. If Darnold does not do considerably better in the last half of this season there probably won’t be a starting job for him in the NFL in 2021.
This is as lifeless and dreary a Jets team as I can ever remember, and I go back more than 50 years with the Jets. There is almost nothing to look forward to on Sundays. A win at any point this year would be a surprise. Heck, getting to the fourth quarter with the game in reach often feels like a bridge too far. As football fans, we can’t always have Super Bowl contenders, playoff teams, or even average teams. There are going to be down years, and fans understand that. But the depths to which this team has sunk is beyond anything a fan should expect. This team does nothing well. Nothing. This team is not competitive. It is not entertaining. It brings no joy. It is a pit of sadness and despair, and nobody who is not getting paid to remain interested should feel bad for losing interest. Rather, the Jets organization from top to bottom should feel bad for putting such an atrocious excuse for an NFL team on the field week after week. The fans deserve better.