What Has Happend to the Jets Special Teams?
When you play the New York Jets, the one area the Jets have always had an advantage was their special teams. With their kick coverage teams and their return game. The Jets return game is still very good, but this season their kick coverage teams and protection has been bad for the Jets. It started a month ago against the New England Patriots, following a Jets touchdown Patriots kick returner Devin McCourty returned a kick off 104 yards for a touchdown and it was a key play in the Patriots overtime victory over the Jets.
A week later in a game against the Miami Dolphins, the Jets special teams did something that no team has ever done in 20-30 years. They gave up a blocked punt for a touchdown, had a field goal blocked, and they gave up an onside kick recovery. It was the type of day that made Jets special teams coach Mike Westhoff say it was the worst day of his coaching career as a special teams coach. Westhoff is known as one of the best special teams coaches in the NFL. There are days where you give up a blocked punt, blocked field goal, and have an onside kick recovered against you. However to have them all happen in the same game is so bizarre and it makes you wonder what is wrong with your special teams.
The special teams woes continued on Sunday against the St.Louis Rams as the Jets had a chip shot field goal blocked. The Rams defender came around the corner and blocked the kick cleanly. The Jets then tried another fake punt and this time they were stuffed. Can the Jets stop with their fake punts because teams have film of the other games so they should know how to expect the fake punt.
Special teams is one third of the game of football and its a very important element to the game.The Jets have always had a good special teams group as a hole, but this year this group has been anything but special. Maybe this is just a bad stretch for Westhoff’s group, but it something to keep an eye the rest of the season with all that has gone wrong with the Jets they don’t need one of their strengths to become a weakness.