Monday, September 9, 2013
Rusty opener for Rex Ryan
By Matt Ehalt
FLORHAM PARK, N.J. -- The Jets had to overcome Rex Ryan to pull out Sunday's game.
The Jets head coach made two mistakes in the final two minutes of Sunday's game that nearly derailed the Jets' 18-17 comeback win over the Buccaneers at MetLife Stadium.
Ryan's first blunder came with the Jets ahead 15-14 and Tampa Bay facing a third-and-10 at their own 37. Ryan admitted he screwed up the coverage on that play as Tampa Bay's Vincent Jackson, who lit up the Jets for 154 yards on seven catches, wasn't covered. Tampa Bay quarterback Josh Freeman found Jackson and he spun out of a tackle from Dawan Landry and went for 37 yards.
"This is on me. I did not communicate it well enough," Ryan said while showing the play to the media during his news conference Monday. "We turn a guy completely loose and you would think we would cover 83. We might turn somebody else loose. But that kid's a heck of a player."
A few plays later, with the Jets calling timeouts in an attempt to get the ball back, Ryan let seven seconds run off after the Jets stopped the Buccaneers on third down. Instead of forcing Tampa Bay to kick with 45 seconds left, the Jets did not call a timeout until there were 38 seconds left. Offensive coordinator Marty Mornhinweg ran at Ryan on the sideline, screaming for him to call the timeout.
Ryan would not confess who messed up on that play, although as head coach that would seem to fall under his jurisdiction. The Buccaneers ended up kicking the go-ahead field goal with 34 seconds left, and the Jets ultimately drove down the field for the game-winning field goal.
"I'm not going to get into exact things," Ryan said. "I just have to do a better job of communicating. That's what happened."
"Everybody was very aware of it. Just didn't get executed the way it needs to," he added.
In the first half, the Jets also had a timeout issue as they allowed 13 seconds to pass before calling a timeout late in the half. Trailing 14-5 and with the ball at Tampa Bay's 25, Geno Smith hit Kellen Winslow for an 18-yard gain that put the Jets at the 7-yard line. The Jets should have called a timeout with 52 seconds left, but waited until there were 39 ticks remaining.
Just like the other mistakes, that one didn't cost the Jets in the end as Geno Smith found Winslow for a 7-yard touchdown to slice the lead to 14-12.
"Not sure why," Ryan said of the clock mismanagement at the end of the first half. "Need to go back and look at that as well."