Film review: Pressure bothered Geno Smith

September, 9, 2013
9/09/13
2:45
PM ET
FLORHAM PARK, N.J. -- Because of the short week, it'll be an abbreviated film review. A look back at some of the key elements from the Jets' 18-17 win over the Bucs:

Smith
Struggles versus pressure: QB Geno Smith was 19-for-28 for 201 yards and a touchdown when facing four or fewers rushers, but his production dripped significantly when the Bucs sent extra pass-rushers. When under pressure, his completion percentage dropped from 80.8 to 25.0, according to ProFootballFocus. The Patriots aren't a big blitzing team, but you have to figure they'll go to school on that.

On Mason Foster's strip sack at the Jets 5, the Bucs rushed six players. The Jets were in position to block it, with a seven-man protection, but LG Vladimir Ducasse couldn't hold off Foster. There were no "hot" receivers in his view, so Smith had to eat it. He has to do a better job of keeping two hands on the ball. Foster had another sack in the second quarter, a loss of 18. The Jets did a horrible job of protecting Smith against a blitz. RB Bilal Powell missed a block. Powell, Ducasse and RG Willie Colon made like bowling pins, falling down as they attempted to block the Bucs' middle stunts. They ended up on top of each other -- not a good look.

Later, Ducasse allowed a pressure/hit on a Smith pass that was nearly intercepted in the end zone by Darrelle Revis. You think Ducasse will have Vince Wilfork lined up over him on Thursday night? You bet. On his interception, an overthrown screen pass to Chris Ivory, Smith was hurried and threw off his back foot.

Geno's first touchdown: Everything clicked on Smith's 7-yard scoring pass to Kellen Winslow. It was a well-designed play by offensive coordinator Marty Mornhinweg, who deployed Stephen Hill, Ryan Spadola and Winslow in a bunch formation to the left. Winslow ran a pivot route, stopping on a dime and re-directing his route toward the post. The pass protection was terrific. By my stopwatch, Smith had 3.1 seconds from snap to delivery -- a good amount of time.

No Joshing: Rex Ryan cooked up one of his signature pressure schemes, forcing QB Josh Freeman in an interception. The Jets put six men on the line of scrimmage, but rushed only four -- two linemen, plus S Antonio Allen and slot CB Isaiah Trufant. The Bucs had trouble picking it up, and Trufant -- all 5-foot-8 of him -- pressured Freeman into throwing wildly over the middle. It was interepted by S Dawan Landry, who was playing center field.

Ryan tried a similar blitz late in the game, and it backfired. On a third-and-10 from the Bucs 37, the Jets rushed five, including Trufant and Allen. Vincent Jackson was uncovered in the slot and Freeman recognized it immediately, throwing quickly to him. Trufant was caught in no man's land and seemed indecisive, not sure whether to continue his rush or drop into coverage on Jackson. Afterward, Ryan took the blame, saying the call wasn't communicated clearly. Landry came from the deep middle to cover Jackson. It should've been a 10-yard completion, but Landry missed the tackle. Jackson went for 37 yards.

Demario Davis saved the game, running 25 yards and chasing down Jackson at the Jets 26. If it weren't for Davis' touchdown-saving tackle, the Bucs probably would've won, 21-15.

Rich Cimini

ESPN New York Jets reporter

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