Normally losing to the New England Patriots by three points doesn’t signal a bad game, but in the case of the New York Jets and their play Thursday night, it does. The Jets were given plenty of opportunities to win the game, but they were unable to make plays when it mattered and they lost to a Patriots team with a struggling offense.
The New England receivers continually dropped the ball on easy catches, and a frustrated Tom Brady was unable to keep his emotions in check — that’s how bad things got.
The Jets’ offense seemed to struggle from the same butter fingers as wide receiver Stephen Hill lost a fumble and dropped his fair share of passes as well. Geno Smith did look good in the pocket at times, but in the second half, his lack of pocket awareness showed as he was sacked four total times in the game, the majority of which came from behind.
Besides the inexperience at quarterback, the Jets also have an incapable running game with Chris Ivory and Bilal Powell. Although the two rushed for a combined 100 yards on 15 carries against the Patriots, neither back rushed for more than 30 yards Week 1. The inconsistency at the running back position will be there all year long, and with an unsteady run game, Smith will struggle to keep defenses off-balanced.
The passing game isn’t in much better shape than that of the running game, but at least the Jets have some experience with Santonio Holmes. Stephen Hill has made somewhat of an impact this season, more so in the second game, but it is hard to expect much out of him in just his second NFL season, especially with a rookie QB.
The defense is officially on the rise now with the emergence of Dee Milliner and Sheldon Richardson as big-time rookies. Miller was able to show some athleticism, breaking up a pass against he Patriots, and Richardson has recorded half a sack and an impressive 12 total tackles in two games.
The unfortunate thing for the Jets is that these two rookies provide the majority of the bright spots on defense. Of course, the cornerback position is shored up with Milliner, Antonio Cromartie and Kyle Wilson, but it is the linebacker and safety positions that will hold this defense back mightily.
Sure, the Jets are 1-1 through two weeks, but lets not forget they stumbled into a win in Week 1 against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers with a lucky penalty call, and the only reason Thursday night’s game was even close is because of all the dropped balls by Patriots receivers. This team really should be 0-2 with at least one blowout loss to date.
Looking forward, the Jets will have a tough time with all four division games against the Miami Dolphins and Buffalo Bills, which is why they will finish the season last in the AFC East. While the Jets may not have the worst record at the end of the season and get the no. 1 overall pick, they will be near the bottom of the league record-wise because they are the worst team in the NFL thanks to their weaponless offense and rebuilding defense.