Like everything they do, the NY JETS got a hard fought and highly improbable victory yesterday over the incredibly inept REVIS ISLAND PIRATEs aka the TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS.
One could see in the Monday newspaper stories already being written with headlines screaming, “Revis Pick-6 leaves JETS drowning in Meadowlands Swamp”. It was there for the taking. It was all setup for a convincing Tampa Bay victory. Revis looked pretty good early on though the Bucs couldn’t get out of their own way, inexplicably hit with one stupid penalty after another. It’s obvious that the powers that be in the NFL are not going to allow the defensive thugs to take over a league reeling from concussion-itis. Several big nasty Bucs hits became big nasty 15 yard personal fouls much to the delight of the JETS and their fans at the JETS Home Opener.
If you’ve read my previous posts about the 2013 JETS, you know I have put little faith in a shaky offensive team, starting a rookie quarterback, in a tough AFC Eastern Division, with a hobbled Santonio Holmes and few impact players at any of the skill positions. But I have also said this defensive team could be one of the best in Rex Ryan’s time in New York. It’s a good mix of crafty vets and young athletic bruisers with the potential to take over games and they certainly showed their strength and resilience yesterday. It was one of the best performances they have turned in in quite a while. Sacks, interceptions, tipped balls and a very very stout run defense lead by tackling machine David Harris, Muhammad Wilkerson and rookie Sheldon Richardson shut down what has generally been regarded as a pretty high powered Tampa Bay offense. If the Jets are going to have a winning season, and dare I say it, make a playoff appearance, that tough physical dominating defensive play will have to continue.
This is not to say the Offense didn’t have it’s moments in contributing to the win. Geno Smith was adequate and more importantly he seemed unfazed by the chaos around him. He played under control and did what he needed to do to keep his team in the game. Stephen Hill, he of the infamous drop at New England last year, a catch that could have propelled the JETS into first place, had a decent game. He held onto the ball which is always a good thing for a wideout. The Offensive Line was up and down but mostly up. When they kept Smith upright in the pocket he showed poise and a great arm connecting with Kellen Winslow on some clutch plays down the stretch. The JET running game was anemic at times but they did manage to do just enough to keep the chains moving. Smith chipped in with his feet on several key plays including the biggest play with 20 seconds to go. Good teams take advantage of stupid plays. It was yet another dumb miscue by Tampa Bay’s defense that lead to the game winning 48 yar field goal by Nick Folk. This guy has really blossomed into an excellent clutch kicker. Bringing him in was a great move by former GM Mike Tannenbaum. NFL teams do not consistently win unless they have a consistently good kicker. Folk has proven he is that guy.
One can only wonder what’s going through Mark Sanchez’ mind at this point? he will undoubtedly be somewhere else next year. I believe he can still be an effective player somewhere but he definitely could use a change of scenery.
Week one is history JETS fans. 1 & 0 is a good start. It’s off to New England for game 2…only 4 days away. The NFL never gets easy.
- Jets Pull Off Meadowland Miracle (thasportsjunkies101.wordpress.com)
- Rookie QB Geno Smith leads Jets over Buccaneers (triblive.com)
- Kellen Winslow comes through for Geno Smith (newsday.com)
- Geno Smith, Jets win opener on crucial Tampa mistake (nfl.si.com)