By Abraham Gutierrez
With a golden opportunity to position themselves in the AFC playoff picture, the New York Jets went into the Lone Star State and came away on the losing end of a 24-17 loss to the Houston Texans. With the Buffalo Bills scheduled to face Tom Brady and the Patriots Monday night, that leaves Gang Green in third place in the grand scheme of things. However, but depending on the outcome of the game, this team can still make up some ground despite having lost.
Unfortunately for Gang Green, today’s game marked an anemic effort as New York has lost two straight and four of their last five games played. In the NFL, it is extremely difficult to win only being able to muster 16 first downs and 267 yards (70 rushing and 197 passing yards) all game.
Truth is that, in order to place blame for this weak performance, one would have to go around the Jets’ locker room. For starters, quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick struggled significantly, connecting on 19-of-39 pass attempts for 216 yards and a quarterback rating of 52.9.
“I didn’t play well,” Fitzpatrick said. “There’s a lot of throws I needed to make that I didn’t make. Obviously having two chances there at the end and not coming up with a touchdown on one of those drives hurts.”
First-string running back Chris Ivory continues to struggle to get going. After putting the league on notice in his first quarter of the season, Ivory hasn’t been the same. In this instance, he finished with 36 yards on eight carries.
Also worth noting was the play of backup running back, Bilal Powell, who finished second on the team in rushing with 22 yards on four carries. Rounding out the Jets’ top three rushers in Week 11 is the aforementioned Fitzpatrick as he got the board with 5 rushes on 10 yards and a score.
Going up against one of the worst scoring defenses in all of football seemed like an opportune time for his defense to improve its current stats. Nevertheless, instead they ended up surrendering 19 first downs, 364 yards of offense, 123 rushing yards and 241 passing yards. The Texans offense also won the time of possession battle against the Raiders defense, keeping them on the field for 33 minutes and 25 seconds, compared to Oakland’s numbers equal to 26:35.
Some of the Jets defensive leaders include Damon Harrison (12 tackles), David Harris (eight tackles), Marcus Gilchrist (7 tackles) and Demario Davis (6 tackles), just to name a few.
No matter how much everyone tries to downplay the situation, it’s almost time to press the panic button in New York as another loss could be catastrophic in Todd Boles’ efforts to stay for the long haul.
This team has failed to get going offensively on a consistent basis in the last five games, in particular the rushing attack and play-calling. The jets need to get back to the same brand of football established by Bowles’ predecessor. It’s going to be interesting to see how severe Darrelle Revis’ head injury is, as he was taken to the locker room.
Next up for the New York Jets is an intraconference battle with the Miami Dolphins. This game is scheduled for Sunday afternoon at 1 p.m. ET from MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey, and it will be broadcast live on CBS Sports.
Abe Gutierrez’s (Twitter: @GutierrezAbe) passion led him to ditch law school journey in order to launch his own publishing company. His expertise make him a valued addition to Examiner.com, AXS.com and the CBS-Sports family. Some of his work can be found on CBS-Miami (Dolphins), CBS-LosAngeles (Chargers), CBS-BayArea (Raiders), CBS-NewYork (NY Jets), CBS-TampaBay (Buccaneers), AXS.com, Examiner.com and other online publications.