Monday, November 15, 2010
Mark Sanchez dangerous on the run
Emblematic of the New York Jets' performance Sunday in Cleveland Browns Stadium, quarterback Mark Sanchez made some death-defying moves to keep plays alive.
Late in the third quarter, Sanchez spent a few minutes supine on the sideline examination table, where trainers looked at his right leg. He didn't miss a play, but he moved gingerly his first series back before finally relocating his stride.
Good thing, because Sanchez made some plays with his legs in the fourth quarter and overtime to help the Jets win 26-20.
On a third-and-9 play with about eight minutes left in sudden death, Sanchez was in danger of being sacked. He spun right and danced away from outside linebacker Matt Roth and rolled left to escape linebacker Marcus Benard. Sanchez found hobbled receiver Jerricho Cotchery at midfield for a 10-yard gain.
Cotchery hurt his groin before making a spectacular catch that ESPN.com NFL editor Sheldon Spencer brilliantly labeled "Groin for Broke." Unfortunately, the play wasn't as significant as it should have been. The drive ended with a missed Nick Folk field goal.
Jets right tackle Damien Woody said they call those moments with Sanchez the "Mad Minute" because there's no textbook on how to block when he starts scrambling.
"You can sense when he's on the move because the D-linemen all of a sudden go from chilling to -- boom -- they're after him," Woody said. "Mark must still have the ball. He scrambles around and we just try to block somebody. Usually, [a receiver] ends up breaking free. Just hope Mark finds him."
ESPN Stats & Information charted all of Sanchez's passes outside the pocket. He completed five of his eight throws for 72 yards, including a 25-yard touchdown to Cotchery in the second quarter. Sanchez had a 131.3 passer rating outside the pocket.
Through his first eight games, ESPN Stats & Information had Sanchez down for 50 percent completions and a 68.0 passer rating when flushed.