Week 11: New York Jets At St. Louis Rams
- QuarterbackThe Jets appear to have an unworkable situation at quarterback. Mark Sanchez is not an accurate passer and they are not going to win many games as a result. Sanchez appears to have regressed the last two seasons and the Jets don’t have a strong enough team to overcome the issue. Backup Tim Tebow has too many technical problems to be a suitable replacement.Sam Bradford is a savvy player who competes with courage and is an accurate passer. Bradford reads defenses well and should be coming into this game with a high level of confidence after the Rams played the Niners to a 24-24 tie in Week 10. Bradford has a great rapport with his offensive line and his receivers.
- OffenseShonn Greene has taken a lot of criticism this year because his numbers are not stellar, but it’s not fair to blame him. The Jets simply don’t have enough suitable weapons for opposing defenses to take the focus off of him. He may have lost a half-step, but he still runs hard between the tackles. Jerome Kerley is a decent, hard-trying receiver, but he should not be the team’s best option.Steven Jackson is still something of a monster while running with the football. He is a power back who still has speed when he breaks into the open. Jackson is not shifty, but he will dish out punishment when he runs with the ball. Danny Amendola is a talented receiver who combines great hands with quickness and a desire to make every play.
- DefenseThe Jets still have a good defense, but they are not coming off an impressive effort in the Week 10 28-7 loss to the Seahawks. The Seattle front seven got the best of the Jets defense and that will not sit well this week with Rex Ryan. Linebacker David Harris sets the tone with his hitting (71 tackles), but he is not a game-changing player.The Rams bounced back against the Niners after a rough showing vs. New England. They traded blows with the 49ers and hung in for four quarters plus a full overtime session. When the Rams needed a stop, defensive end Chris Long came up with a big sack and that helped preserve the tie. James Laurinaitis is a tackling machine and defensive end Robert Quinn can turn the corner and get to the quarterback.
- Special TeamsSpecial teams coach Mike Westhoff has not been happy with the way his special teams have performed this season. That’s because he remains demanding in his last season. Kerley has returned a punt for a score while Joe McKnight has returned a kickoff for a touchdown. Opponents have also returned a kickoff for a touchdown.The Rams could not run their field goal team quickly enough when the game was on the line in the late going against the 49ers, and that delay of game penalty cost them a chance to win the game. While that play hurt, rookie punter Johnny Hekker threw two passes out of punt formation that resulted in first downs for the Rams.
The Rams may not be one of the most talented teams, but they play with full effort for head coach Jeff Fisher and that should be enough against the dysfunctional Jets. The Rams recorded a tie with the 49ers in San Francisco, but that had to feel like a win against such a high-profile opponent. The Jets are not the same kind of threat and the Rams should come away with the victory.