Schwartz: Which Way Are The Jets Heading?
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By Peter Schwartz
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When the Jets, then 2-0, embarked on their three game road swing, the goal was simple. Come back from Foxboro at 4-1, but no worse than 3-2. They had to play two games without Nick Mangold, but the Jets couldn’t afford three straight losses.
After a 30-21 loss to the Patriots at Gillette Stadium, the Jets now find themselves at a crossroads in their season. A team with pre-season Super Bowl aspirations has now lost three in a row and they are on the cusp of their season spiraling out of control.
The finger pointing has started. The losses are mounting. The offense continues to struggle. And, the guarantees have stopped.
The only guarantee right now is that the Jets have some serious soul searching to do as they get set to welcome the 0-4 Miami Dolphins to the Meadowlands next Monday.
Offensively, things have to change in a New York minute after the Jets cornered the market in three and outs on Sunday. If you thought the heat was already on offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer, just wait. It’s only going to get turned up this week.
Defensively, things were a little better on Sunday as the Jets put some pressure on Tom Brady. But a huge blemish came when Eric Smith bit on a Brady play fake and Darrelle Revis had to tackle Wes Welker from behind to save a touchdown.
That is until BenJarvus Green-Ellis found the end zone.
The Jets Green-Ellis look like Jim Brown as he sliced his way through the Gang Green defense for 136 yards and two touchdowns.
What happened to the vaunted Jets run defense?
Monday will bring another unhappy film session in Florham Park. They won’t be massacres like the two weeks before but more like a drama.
Wouldn’t you love to be a fly on the wall in that meeting room?
When something goes wrong, who is going to snicker and say, “Psst, that was his fault!”
MUTINY OR NOT?
When the Jets re-signed Santonio Holmes, signed Plaxico Burress, and signed Derrick Mason, they created a receiver trio that shared a couple of common traits.
First, they are highly skilled NFL receivers that gave Mark Sanchez a nice array of weapons to throw to.
Second, they are three players who are also known for their strong personalities.
So, it was not a surprise to me that a report surfaced indicating that the inmates were trying to take over the asylum. According to the Daily News on Sunday, Holmes, Burress and Mason all went to head coach Rex Ryan on separate occasions to question the system of offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer.
It was also not a surprise that the Jets denied the report in a statement issued Sunday morning. The story also came up in Ryan’s post-game press conference when he was asked if the report from true.
“That’s Ripley’s to me,” said Ryan. “If it is, then maybe I got hit the head or something. I don’t remember that.”
When asked if any players had come to him to complain about the offense, Rex offered a very quick and short answer.
“No,” said Ryan.
If it’s true that the players went to Rex about Schotty, that’s one thing. But the fact that it leaked out is of greater concern, especially after Mark Sanchez made it clear this week, following critical comments by Santonio Holmes, that these kinds of things should be kept in-house.
When you assemble players that have had issues in the past, its not so bad when you win. But when the losing starts, those kinds of players tend to start mouthing off. They all chose to re-sign or sign with the Jets because the team was considered to be Super Bowl contenders.
They are also all players who are used to catching lots of passes, something that is not happening right now.
Say what you want about what kind of coach that Ryan is, but he has a chance here to put his foot down (no pun intended). He has to get his team together and keep internal affairs internal. Having more leaks than Watergate will not help the Jets get to where they want to be .
It’s about 700 miles between the Jets complex in Florham Park, New Jersey and Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis.
Suddenly, the road to Super Bowl XLVI for the Jets seems so much longer.
DON’T PANIC JUST YET!
After three straight losses, members of Jets Nation might be ready to push the panic button. But let’s just relax and take a chill pill. With eleven games to go, the Jets do have some time to fix what is broken and get their season turned around.
Let’s remember that the 0-4 Dolphins come to Met Life Stadium next Monday night and that is followed by a home game a week from Sunday against the Chargers. In fact, let’s do the old “Win/Loss” routine just to make all of you feel better…
Miami at home: that’s a win.
San Diego at home: I’m going to give them a win.
At Buffalo: I’ll give them a loss.
New England at home: A fired up crown on a Sunday night lifts the Jets to a win.
At Denver: That’s a win over Tebow and company… well I think that Tebow will be the starter by that point!
Buffalo at home: maybe the Bills come back to earth by that point…Jets win.
At Washington:hmmmmmmm….let’s give the Jets a loss.
Kansas City at home: there’s another win.
At Philadelphia: The dream team has been a nightmare but let’s give the Jets a loss there.
Giants at home: at Met Life Stadium…home of both teams….The Jets have a merry time on Christmas Even with a win.
At Miami: another Jets win.
There you go. The Jets will finish the season winning 8 of their last 11 games and they finish 10-6 for an AFC Wild Card spot.
Do you feel better now?
Let’s just see how things play out!
That’s all for now! Check back later in the week for a preview of Monday night’s game against the Dolphins and a look at the 2012 Ring of Honor Class.
Is it panic time? What’s wrong with Gang Green? Sound off on the Jets in the comments below…