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Grades: Week 6 @ Jets


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Okay, it wasn't all F's, but it was as close as I hope we come this season.

Box score

Play by play

Offense, D -- 65 plays, 298 yards (4.6 yards/play), four turnovers, 21 first downs (15 passing, 0 rushing, 6 from penalties), 3/11 on third down, 4 sacks, 9 points

Backs / receivers / tight ends:

What a let down. Our receivers struggled to get open, couldn’t really create separation, and let several balls go through their hands (Avery had 12 targets and only caught four passes, and so on). They seemed to have a defender all over them on practically every throw, and that’s part of the reason we benefited from so many penalties. But I’m sure the Jets are okay with a PI or a holding when it keeps the receivers from getting into a rhythm with the quarterback. It also practically erases any margin for error on the quarterback’s part, like the first interception, which was an off-target throw that got tipped up by Wayne, and picked off. That would have been Reggie’s obligatory one-handed catch, but those kinds of plays can’t be relied on. This game is an example of how beneficial a big playmaker at receiver would be. The tight ends carried their weight, and were a little more open than the receivers, but were overthrown several times, on crucial downs, including a sure touchdown to Fleener on a perfect play call. More on that later, but the tight ends did their job when they had chances to. The backs were a non-factor, and it bothers me for several reasons. We made practically no effort to get them involved in the passing game, and that’s nonsense given how physical the Jets corners were being with our receivers and how aggressive their pass rushers were. The quarterback also had an issue with identifying hot receivers and checkdowns, and even when he did, he missed several throws. The run game was horrible, and even a quirky end-around reverse that worked still didn’t quite work, and was stopped by a nice hustle play by a Jets lineman. There’s no explaining 2.6 yards/carry. This grade might seem harsh because the skill guys rely on the other units to produce, but the skill guys weren’t good either. Fleener and Allen played well, but everyone else left a lot of chances out on the field. C-

Offensive line / blocking:

Kind of just outmatched, physically and otherwise. The Jets played a picture-perfect game in the front seven; really, a case study in how to play two-gap defense. They didn’t over-pursue and give up running lanes, they didn’t lose containment on a mobile quarterback, and they created penetration and got into our backfield. Hard to run against that, and our coaches did little to counter it. The pass protection was inconsistent – there were some good moments, and some bad moments, and there were several missed blitzes that we didn’t do anything to avoid or stop. I think a lot of the trouble the quarterback wound up in had to do with the quarterback and the receivers, and not the protection. The backs did a decent job picking up blitzers, at least when they were identified, and several weren’t. The run game simply didn’t exist. We couldn’t even run with an extra lineman on the field. Dwayne Allen had a couple nice, one from the fullback spot, but that was probably the highlight in the run game. The line just didn’t do very much to create running lanes, and we kept trying to run the ball into the teeth of their defense. Wilkerson was all over the place, and Coples was very disruptive. Our center couldn’t get any push, and both guards made their own mistakes. Little to like from either the offensive line or the blocking schemes, in both phases. D

Quarterback:

Luck seemed rattled, more and more as the game went on. He started out strong, hitting receivers, getting rid of the ball, and had a great conversion on a long third down. That drive stalled, however, due to an overthrow to Allen on third and short. Tough play, but one of this guy’s strengths is supposed to be his ability to make plays on the run, and he’s shown that in the first four games. Not today. He missed Fleener, wide open in the end zone, on the next series, on another designed roll out. Beautiful play call, and he just floated it. And then the interception on the next series, and things never really got better. Unlike last week, he seemed hesitant to run with the ball, passing up on a rushing opportunity to throw incomplete to a well-covered Avery. He grew roots on several plays in the pocket, and there actually was a nice pocket on quite a few occasions, but the coverage was great downfield, and Luck took too long to bail out. He failed to identify quick passing opportunities, which led to him holding on to the ball too long. He overthrew receivers, then underthrew receivers, including a great opportunity to hit Avery on a nice double-move route that should have drawn a PI call. We got bailed out several times, because their pass defense was super aggressive and super physical, and maybe that’s the biggest factor in why we couldn’t get the pass game into a nice rhythm. But Luck just seemed to come unraveled, especially at the end of the game, with the terrible throw for the interception (looked like he thought he was playing against Pac-12 defenders with how softly he tossed that one up), and then getting hit for the sack/fumble after that. This was true “rookie ball,” even moreso than the opener, I think. And I think the answer to it is a) better play calling, and b) more willingness by Luck to take off and run rather than force throws. He was 5/13 against five man rushes, with a pick. Just unprepared for the pressure. That should be his money situation. Several dropped and tipped passes, and lots of pressure in his face and around his feet and head, but he was off himself. I’m prepared to see another two or three games like this throughout the season, but I hope we can adjust to make life a little easier for him moving forward. D

Defense, D -- 64 plays, 351 yards (5.5 yards/play), zero turnovers, 22 first downs (8 passing, 14 rushing), 6/12 on third down, 35 points; the Jets had a higher yards per play than we did, and they ran the ball 2:1, while we threw the ball 2:1

Defensive front:

The raw numbers: 252 yards on 44 rushes, one sack in 20 drop backs. I think I could probably stop right there. Jerry Hughes is the only one who got near the quarterback, and he made a nice play to get the sack. Freeney was just frustratingly ineffective, whether it’s because of his injury or something else. The defensive interior got moved around like vegetables on your kid’s dinner plate, all game long. The linebackers got swallowed up by blockers, and over-pursued. Jerrell Freeman was around the ball quite a bit, but he got lost in the mess on a lot of run plays, almost like the Jets gameplanned to take him out of the game. And still didn’t, so credit there. The linebackers weren’t really the problem, not in a defense that’s designed to keep them free of blockers. The real problem is that the linemen weren’t able to hold their assignments with any kind of regularity. Geathers and Dixon did practically nothing to help; I’d like to see us get Jean-Baptiste back in the building after seeing those guys. Antonio Johnson played okay, had to deal with a lot of double-teams, but that’s what a nose tackle is supposed to do, and this game is why we need a better nose tackle if we’re going to run a two-gap defense. What Mike DeVito did for the Jets (and he’s not great) is what AJ doesn’t do for us. They converted third down after third down on us, most of them on the ground. And whenever they got momentum, it was a touchdown. Missed tackles, including by the safeties, and poor containment, combined to contribute to several 12 and 15 and 21 yard gains by Greene, and then finally we gave up the big 61 yarder to McKnight. We’ve got to play more disciplined, and we must – MUST – win more battles in the trenches. D-

Pass defense:

They only tried 20 pass plays, and we still gave up too many plays. Cassius Vaughn came back to earth after a really nice game, getting beat on a couple nice routes, and kind of slid off on a couple tackle opportunities. Powers got beat on a nice route in the end zone by a very mediocre receiver. Zbikowski had a chance to make a play on the other touchdown pass, but it was a really good throw. Darius Butler kind of reminded me of our old Cover 2 corners, in a good way, as he stepped up to make a nice quick tackle. It would seem like I wouldn’t be so dismayed by the pass defense, with only 82 yards allowed, but we really seemed incapable of making plays. Conner had a nice break-up, and Freeney got his hands on a pass, but pretty much the rest of the attempts were unchallenged it seemed like. They got a lead, and then did all they could to keep Sanchez safe from passing situations, including screens and quick passes to the outside. Really, this is a “meh” kind of performance, but the two touchdowns were preventable. I think we’ll be okay once Davis gets back on the field. C-

Special teams, C+

Should have been uneventful, but we’re still the Indianapolis Colts, so we can’t have that. Vinatieri finally gave us a clean kicking performance, and according to some who went to the game, he wasn’t dialed again in pre-game. So good that he could brush it off and drill some field goals for us. Again, the leg is fine. McAfee did a good job punting, and Lefeged is right there making another big play to down one inside the five. One kickoff got loose, but no big, just to the 30 yardline. So, good game, right? Aside from one play... Fourth and 11 from our 40 yardline, and from that spot on the field, anything is in play, but you think with 11 yards to go, you’re safe. No way. Tebow takes the direct snap, fakes the dive, then lofts it to a wide open eligible linebacker for a 23 yard gain. This is 100% a coaching and concentration mistake, and it resulted in the touchdown that gave the Jets a two score lead at the end of the half and completely changed the complexion of the game moving forward. One play, but it was their biggest pass play of the game, and it was a back-breaker.

Coaching / play calling, D

First thing, you have a young team undergoing massive changes, with a rookie quarterback and a ton of moving parts on both sides of the ball. You can’t keep falling behind in the first half. Your game plan needs to account for these first half deficits. And then, the adjustments that helped us get back in the game, the motivation and the changes in play calling to get the offense going and get some points on the board, those didn’t come / didn’t work. The offensive play calling was back to being predictable, to the point that we even brought in an extra lineman and then ran that way every time. In Arians’ defense, the couple times he did figure something out and put a good play out there, either the quarterback couldn’t get the ball to the right spot or the defense committed a penalty, which completely eliminated any play calling rhythm. But it was just too formulaic, too obvious. And we didn’t counter the Jets aggression and physicality with plays that would take advantage and get our playmakers the ball in space. On defense, I don’t really fault the scheme or the play calling; we just got outclassed. They ran the ball down our throats (Greene had 103 yards up the middle on us, and averaged 2.7 yards before contact), and nothing short of bringing the house every play would have helped. I think, maybe with how ineffective our three-down front was, and with Redding and Freeney hampered and ineffective, we could have gone with a four-down front with Nevis and Johnson at tackle, and Mathews at end, rotating Freeney and Hughes at the other end spot. Geathers and Dixon might have been able to hold a little better in a four-down front also. But that’s not something that I think our staff is willing to commit to for long stretches, especially to control the run. Couldn’t have hurt, though, given how poor we did. I don’t think our coaching staff did very much to help, overall, but I fault the execution a lot more than the coaching. Except on the fake punt, which our staff should have drilled over and over again to make sure there was no way we’d give up a 23 yard pass play on fourth and 11. Given how high-profile their upback situation is, and the fact that they’d converted on fake punts twice this season, we should have been ready for anything. Matter of fact, from that spot on the field, maybe we should have been in a coverage look anyways, just because of the field position ramifications. This was just a pitiful failure on the part of everyone involved. Unacceptable.

Browns up next. At home. If the pattern holds, we should play better.

Go Colts!

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Grades hopefully by sometime tomorrow. Give me your thoughts.

Quarterback --

Offensive line --

Receivers / backs / tight ends --

Defensive front (run stopping and pass rush) --

Pass defense --

Special teams --

Coaching --

QB- C- , lots of drops, Luck was off a bit. Oline- B-, did ok pass blocking most the game, Luck holds on to the ball too long. Recievers, RB- F 50 yards rushing is pathetic, multiple big drops by butterfingered recievers. Dline-F- enuff said. Hughes only bright spot. Pass D- D , too much cushion to Jet recievers, made Sanchez look like a credible QB. Special Teams- D - not even getting to the 20 on most returns.
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I'll let everyone else complain about the O and D, here's my rant:

Why can't our STs ever be good? We all knew that Tebow fake, yet it still worked. We constantly take the ball out of the endzone and rarely make the 20 on a KR. Also overrun their returner a lot.

All of those should be corrected by coaching. I don't expect spectacular plays, but I do expect competent coaching.

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Quarterback -- (C-) He wasn't that bad, he did throw for almost 300 yards, it's not his fault the receivers can't catch, He should have scrambled on some plays instead of forcing the ball in.

Offensive line -- (D) They sometime gave time to throw, but the ability to open holes for rushing was lost, and then they started to fold.

Receivers -- (F) No way can you target a NFL caliber receiver 12 times and they only haul in 4 (Donnie Avery) Receivers failed here, in the worst way.

RBs -- (C-) I'll give the RB's the benefit and bump them from a D to a C- for bad O-line play.

Tight ends -- (C+) Fleener was decent, and so was Allen, but they were average, maybe a little better than average.

Defensive -- (F) What a poor showing by the defense, Greene was avg 2.9 per carry and Sanchez had almost the same number of picks and TD's how do you let that combination beat you?

Special teams -- (B-) McAfee did a good job punting as usual, and AV was perfect on FG attempts, B- comes from the horrible play on the fake punt, and the non existent return game.

Coaching -- (D+) Bad play calling, no motivation at half time, ugh, just ugh.

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I may be wrong, but it felt like they wanted to hit our offense in the mouth as much as possible. How many roughing the passer penalties were there? It may have worked, cause our passing game was just off all day.

No, I agree with you. They were physical and aggressive, almost like "who cares if we get called for penalties if we can rattle their players?" Almost brazen. And it did work. Luck came unraveled, the receivers stopped fighting, and mistakes got amplified.

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QB -- D (Luck couldn't make many good throws and struggled making good decisions)

O-line -- C- (The blocking was horrendous in the running game and Luck was sacked 4 times, on top of being pressured a lot)

Skill Positions -- D+ (Receiver play is based on the QB, and Luck did badly) (Fleener had a good game) (Ballard tried but couldn't do much, but that's due to the O-line)

Front 7 -- F (Could they stop Shonn Greene, No) (Could they get pressure on Sanchez, No) (Those 2 are their main jobs)

Pass Defense -- C- (Sanchez didn't pass often, but when he did he made the pass) (On paper, great job, but in reality they weren't good)

ST -- B+ (Adam made 4 kicks, Pat punted well and they covered kicks and punts well)

Coaching -- D (Defensive play calling was atrocious and the offensive play calling was meh at best) (No excitment from Arians or any attempt at motivating these guys)

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I'm curious: What would have improved the defensive play calling?

I'd like to see us load 8-9 in the box more on 1st and second down, I realize that leaves up vulnerable deep and in one on one situations but if it means not getting ran wild on and putting us through a slow death I would like to see it done on occasion, Still waiting for coaches film before I give my grades
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Play calling gets an D- from me. We completely abandoned the run for some reason. Carter got what, 4 carries too? What in the wide world of sports?

Yeah, I was wondering about that too. Even though Ballard wasn't breaking any big plays, he did have consistent runs of 3-5 yards in the 1st quarter. He had 4 carries in the 1st and 3rd quarters each. He had no runs in the 2nd or 4th quarters.

I'll have to watch the flow of the game again, but I'm guessing that we stopped running the ball because we were falling behind on the scoreboard pretty quickly. Brown may have helped in that regard, because he has more big play potential than Ballard, but I suspect that Brown probably wouldn't have gotten a whole lot of carries in that situation, either.

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I would have a hard time giving Luck a passing grade. As porous as the run defense was, if he connects, hitting open receivers, and doesn't turn the ball over, it's a tight game.

Misses Fleener for TD: +4 points

INT in own territory: -7 points

INT in end zone: +7 points

Fumble in Colts territory: -7 points

That's +11 for the Colts, -14 for the Jets. If you factor in other missed opportunities and overthrows/underthrows, the game could have gone in a different direction.

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I'd like to see us load 8-9 in the box more on 1st and second down, I realize that leaves up vulnerable deep and in one on one situations but if it means not getting ran wild on and putting us through a slow death I would like to see it done on occasion, Still waiting for coaches film before I give my grades

I think we brought safeties down pretty regularly. I might have gone Cover 1 for a good stretch, but really the game was a series of 5, 7, 10 yard runs, and then a few 15-20 yarders, and then the big 61 yarder. It wasn't about the numbers, it was about the guys in the middle getting outplayed. That's why I might have gone with more four-down fronts in the second half, because the three-down fronts just weren't working. We didn't have the right guys out there. I think we missed Moala and Tevaseu more than we expected to, and Redding's injury didn't help either.

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I agree with everything in this article when he looks at the positives players of the game which were: Jerry Hughes, Fleener and Allen, Anthony Castonzo and Winston Justice. NO PROMOTIONAL POSTING ON THE SITE2012-archives/october/accentuate-the-positive-shoutouts-to-hughes-allen-fleener-castonzo-and-justice.html

Hughes was all over the place making plays, Fleener and Allen are making impacts now. Castonzo only gave up two pressures and was the best run blocker in the game. And Winston Justice who gave up zero pressures and was easily the best pass protector in the game(not so much run blocking)

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Quarterback -- C -- given his protection, i thought he played okay. not great but not terrible either. Alot of the dropped balls didn't help either. I thought one thing he could have definitely done better was just running the ball at times. There were times when the protection broke down and he went out of the pocket and could have picked up a first down but instead decided to throw for a semi-open reciver.

Offensive line -- D

Receivers -- C

backs -- D-

tight ends -- B+

Defensive front (run stopping and pass rush) -- F -- I know we aren't a good run stopping defense to begin with, however, what frustrated me the most was the amount of missed tackles. There were a handful of plays where our rush/line backers broke into the back field but just couldn't wrap up Shonn Greene.

Pass defense -- C -- played alright. Run game screwed them over.

Special teams -- F -- come on, we all expected the Tebow run/throw crap on special teams. That was SAD

Coaching -- D -- Play calling was okay, but I wanted to see alot more RB screens than WR screens.

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QB -- D (Luck couldn't make many good throws and struggled making good decisions)

O-line -- C- (The blocking was horrendous in the running game and Luck was sacked 4 times, on top of being pressured a lot)

Skill Positions -- D+ (Receiver play is based on the QB, and Luck did badly) (Fleener had a good game) (Ballard tried but couldn't do much, but that's due to the O-line)

Front 7 -- F (Could they stop Shonn Greene, No) (Could they get pressure on Sanchez, No) (Those 2 are their main jobs)

Pass Defense -- C- (Sanchez didn't pass often, but when he did he made the pass) (On paper, great job, but in reality they weren't good)

ST -- B+ (Adam made 4 kicks, Pat punted well and they covered kicks and punts well)

Coaching -- D (Defensive play calling was atrocious and the offensive play calling was meh at best) (No excitment from Arians or any attempt at motivating these guys)

I haven't seen the game yet, but what was AV's 4th kick?

I thought we scored 9.

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you can chalk up most of Greene yards because of missed tackles. too many times we had him dead to rights in the backfield or for a short 2 yard gain and he just breaks our tackles like we arent even there and turns it into a 12-15 yard gain.

and Butler had McKnight for a 2 yard loss on one play, doesnt wrap up and he winds up taking it 61 yards after the missed tackle. Its not like we were out of position, we were there to make the play most of the time just missed way too many tackles. if we just make the tackles this game wouldn't had been as lopsided as it winded up being. correctable mistakes just have to correct them. Hopefully Freeman's concussion is a mild one or Angerer for sure needs to come back this week.

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Hopefully Freeman's concussion is a mild one or Angerer for sure needs to come back this week.

Was it ever confirmed that Freeman did in fact suffer a concussion? I guess we'll know more tomorrow.

Agreed on the bad tackling comments. It's funny how you can go from a potentially great defensive play to an awful one, just with one guy doing a better job. You mentioned Butler's miss on McKnight, and there was Bethea's whiff on Greene, and several others in this game and throughout the season.

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Was it ever confirmed that Freeman did in fact suffer a concussion? I guess we'll know more tomorrow.

Agreed on the bad tackling comments. It's funny how you can go from a potentially great defensive play to an awful one, just with one guy doing a better job. You mentioned Butler's miss on McKnight, and there was Bethea's whiff on Greene, and several others in this game and throughout the season.

I read about Freeman's concussion on IndyStar it was never confirmed but he did leave the game and he was unavailable for comment after the game so we will find out later on today

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