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Colts 36 Jets 7: Overmatched

NFL: New York Jets at Indianapolis Colts Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports

I think everybody would like to believe there are easy answers and quick fixes.

Fire Adam Gase. I can’t argue with that. Gase is a bad coach. He has done a bad job in his year plus with the Jets. I don’t think you could come up with a compelling argument for him to keep his job. He wasn’t the reason the Jets lost to the Colts.

Draft a new quarterback to replace Sam Darnold. We are quickly approaching the point where that will become a legitimate consideration. Darnold looks like a broken quarterback. He will need a lot of resiliency and confidence in the weeks ahead as his shortcomings are dissected by fans and media alike and pressure grows. Still it’s difficult to imagine many young quarterbacks show the ability to function in the Jets’ current infrastructure. Draft a new quarterback, and we will have this exact same discussion two to three years from now if you put him in these same surroundings.

Fire Gregg Williams. I don’t know what else you want the man to do. He has no pass rushers or anybody who can cover. His one difference maker was traded before training camp for Draft picks. Under the circumstances, all the Jets can do on defense is avoid 50 yard touchdowns, allow the other team to move the ball, bend but don’t break, and hope somebody makes a play in the red zone. It’s tough to blame an overmatched defense that only allowed 20 points.

Blame Joe Douglas. You should have realized that based on the timing of Mike Maccagnan’s firing and Douglas’ hiring that the new general manager wouldn’t really be able to begin fixing the problems in earnest until the 2021 offseason.

The biggest issue for the Jets in their 36-7 loss to the Colts was a lack of talent. This is simply a very, very bad roster. That’s compounded by the fact the team was playing none of its starting wide receivers and was without both starting tackles for over half the game.

The starters aren’t very good to begin with.

Years and years of poor hirings and personnel decisions got us to this point. It can’t be fixed overnight. This season is already doomed for this team.

The coach might need to be fired, but nobody should get the idea that alone will turn this into a decent team.

The quarterback is providing alarming signs, but it also isn’t an accident that backup receivers had a lot of culpability in two pick sixes from this game.

It also isn’t an accident that the young quarterbacks having success in this league tend to be playing for organizations that have a plan to develop them.

I am seeing a lot of talk about Josh Allen’s early success with the division rival Buffalo Bills. For years I have argued on this website that Allen is a talented quarterback, and many Jets fans were way too dismissive of his potential. Still I have watched most of his snaps in 2019. He has moments where he makes mistakes as ugly as anything Sam Darnold has done. He just happens to have the talent around him to prevent those ugly moments from sinking his team. He also has supporting pieces that accentuate what he does well.

Is Sam Darnold ultimately the answer for the Jets? It’s difficult to say. At some point it might not matter whether the Jets are to blame for his struggles if he develops lasting bad habits. You definitely aren’t going to have success, however, if your entire offense depends on a 23 year old quarterback doing something special on every single snap. Chris Hogan, Braxton Berrios, and Lawrence Cager aren’t players who have any business seeing significant snaps at wide receiver in the National Football League. These are the receivers the Jets played on Sunday.

Part of it was due to bad injury luck, but the talent gap on this roster took years to create. It won’t be fixed by firing the coach or changing the quarterback. It can only be fixed through smarter approaches to free agency and better drafting. It won’t be fixed in 2020.

This is just a bad team, and until that is fixed we will be having these same discussions over and over.