NEW YORK (WFAN/AP) – Don’t tell Jets coach Rex Ryan that Monday night’s 20-16 loss to the Houston Texans doesn’t count.
“I hate losing, our team hates losing,” Ryan seethed after the game. “I don’t care if it’s preseason or not, we know in the big picture, you forget about what your record is. But still, at the time, I hate losing.”
Houston’s defense produced seven sacks with starting offensive linemen Nick Mangold and Brandon Moore out.
Or rather, the Jets’ offensive line gave up seven sacks.
“Clearly we’ve got a long way to go with our protections,” said Ryan. “We’ve got to figure this thing out, because it’s ridiculous.”
Mark Sanchez looked sharp, completing 6 of 7 passes, two to Santonio Holmes. Sanchez’s usual backup, Mark Brunell, did not play because of a finger injury, leaving the rest of the game to seventh-round draft pick Greg McElroy, the former Alabama star.
The Jets had a chance to win it in the final minute, but undrafted free agent Michael Campbell dropped a 32-yard pass from McElroy in the end zone.
“No excuses,” said Ryan.
In the second quarter, linebacker Jesse Nading sacked McElroy, forced a fumble and defensive end Tim Jamison recovered at the Jets 14. The Texans converted a fourth-and-1, and Ryan stomped up the sideline and angrily called a timeout and ripped off his headset before Houston could snap it again.
“Too many guys out there, and we had to burn a timeout,” Ryan said.
Despite getting banged around, McElroy, a seventh-round draft pick, still found gaps and completed 23 of 39 passes for 208 yards and a touchdown.
“He got hit almost every time he threw the ball,” Ryan said.
Still, it wasn’t all bad. The Jets’ first-string offense produced four first downs and 73 yards. But back to the negative — they only scored three points.
“We would’ve liked to score a touchdown on that first drive, but we didn’t,” Sanchez said. “I was proud of the first group moving the ball the way we did. Now, we just need to finish in the red zone.”
Do the Jets have a serious problem on the second-string offensive line? Sound off in the comments below…
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