Monday, November 21, 2011
Revisiting the Jets' blame game
By James Walker
Last week the AFC East blog asked our community who is most to blame for the New York Jets' debacle this season?
Here were some responses:
Richard from Carbondale, IL, writes: The Jets must decide: Mark Sanchez or Brian Schottenheimer? One of the two has to be the problem with the offense. I think the Jets will pick Mark. I hope they find a new OC and see if a better play-caller can get the offense moving. Note how much better the red zone offense is now that Tom Moore is helping. That makes me wonder if Sanchez is capable of doing better if he had a smarter play-caller helping him out. The Jets must break up the Sanchez/Schotty combo and see if Sanchez really is the QB of the future.
Dan from Princeton, NJ, writes: The fault falls completely on Schottenheimer. His inability to create game plans that play to the Jets strengths is what cost us the majority of games this season. After all, it took him five games to realize we should throw to Plax in the end zone! Sanchez is known as a guy who is good on bootlegs, play action. Where have those plays been all season? Why is this the first game where we saw screen passes? Why is every single route the WRs run within 10 yards?
John from Hillsdale, NJ, writes: The blame for this Jets disaster needs to be put on Schottenheimer. Although the Jets defense has had its bad moments the offense is non-existent. This is his unit - his game plan. If the Jets offense plays even mediocre in Denver they win that game. Most of the time they look lost - like the first day of camp.
MM from Portland writes: The NY JETS have below standard offensive and defensive lines. The O-line makes Sanchez look worse than the average QB he probably is and makes the running game ponderous. The D-line gives opposing QBs time and makes blitzes the only time the Jets get a pass rush, rather than blitzes being when they get an overwhelming pass rush, which is really the main purpose of the blitz, and Rex Ryan's signature play.
Bill Ewall from Boston, MA, writes: Rex's style -- pump up the volume -- has a very short shelf life. We are now seeing the inevitable down side. What successful football coach has ever guaranteed big wins like Rex, or given motivation to his opponents, or disrespected his rival coaches and their key players? Rex has failed to manage Sanchez and his confidence and skills development - he does not appear to really know offence. Can anyone really be surprised that Sexy Rexy has used up his mojo?
Jake from NYC writes: I put this on Ryan. He chose to ride Sanchez, Shotty and his vaunted D to the Super Bowl. The downside to making back-to-back AFC Championship Games is that it prevents you from making objective decisions about your players and abilities. You trade consistency and development for magic and miracles that don't always materialize. That's why this team is where it is - a below average QB and running game, weakened offensive line, underutilized WRs and a defense that has morphed from the brash attacking Ryan-mode to a reactionary unit under his subordinates. I'm sorry to say - Same old Jets.
Dan writes: I put most of the blame on Mike Tannenbaum - which pains me as a fellow UMass grad. Here's a small list of just some of the guys he's let go over the past couple years: Braylon Edwards, Jerhico Cotchery, Brady Smith, Thomas Jones, Leon Washington, Tony Richardson, Damien Woody - those are all on the offensive side of the ball. And each of them was a quality guy and locker room leader. They were replaced with rookies and guys like Derrick Mason. And as a result, our offense has no identity, no consistency, and little veteran leadership. We’re quick to blame the coaches and the QB, but in reality, there is no consistency from year to year, so they're always searching for an identity. That's not on the coaches, and it's certainly not on the QB - that's on the guy(s) managing the roster.
James Walker: This is a tough question. As you can see, there are plenty of fingers to point. No one gets all the blame, I would say the offensive line and Schottenheimer should get the most criticism. Everyone agrees the biggest problem is on offense. Looking at that side of the ball, the line has been the most inconsistent group. If a team cannot run block or pass block consistently, there's not much an offense can do. But it's also Schottenheimer's job to make the most of his talent, and that hasn't been the case. Sanchez also is failing to make the proper strides on Schottenheimer's watch. So both are equally at fault.