Tag: Mark Sanchez
There comes times in football when all you need to do is avoid making those huge mistakes that ultimately costs games. Keep the ball in your hands, complete the pass, make the catch, avoid getting sacked, the principles of football: it just wasn’t happening for the New York Jets on Sunday. The Patriots, on the other hand, finally managed to win a game in the final minutes, under pressure and when it matter most. Things got a bit scary for a moment there for the fans at the Gillette Stadium in Foxboro, as once again New England seemed to be losing control of the game in the final minutes. With a 2-yard pass from Tom Brady to Rob Gronkowski with 2:39 to play in the third quarter, the Patriots took a 13-23 lead going into the fourth.
But Rex Ryan, the Jets head coach, started to move his lines and after three consecutive scores, the Jets were back on the lead with Nick Folks 2nd 43-yard field goal that gave them a 26-23 lead. Then came Tom Brady. He got to work and was able to set up Stephen Gostkowski for a 43-yard field goal as time expired to force the game into overtime. It wasn’t a good felling. At least not until they managed to turn things around in overtime: after all, Pats fans were all well aware of the fact that up to that point, New England had played three games that were decided in the final two minutes this season. And they had loss all of them. But not this time, not against Mark Sanchez and the New York Jets: this time it would be the visiting team making all the mistakes and basically handing the win to the Pats when Rob Ninkovich knocked the ball out of Mark Sanchez’s hand in overtime and recovered the fumble. That was it; the Patriots took a 29-26 win at home against the Jets and took a hold of the first place in their division.
Before the games started the Miami Dolphins, the Buffalo Bills and the Jets and the Patriots were all tied in at 3-3. With the win over the Jets, the Bills loss to the Tennessee Titans and the fact that the Dolphins were on their BYE week, the Pats are now leading the division. Sure enough the Patriots head coach Bill Belichick knows that there’s plenty of work to be done and that at 4-3 for the season, improvement is a must for this squad. “There’s a lot of football left to be played,” Belichick said. “I don’t think anybody clinched anything today.”
Rex Ryan, on the other hand, had to recognize one thing: they gave the game away. They were sloppy with the football and despite the huge effort they made to get back in the game, they just couldn’t get it straight down the line. “We made too many mistakes but we had our opportunities,” Rex Ryan said. “It just stinks being on this end of it.” It sure does. There are still plenty of internal issues with the Jets. They have yet managed to make Tim Tebow a factor in the game and Mark Sanchez has been as inconsistent as you could wish for. Let’s see what Ryan can make of this mess in the next few weeks.
Well, for what it’s worth, you can at least now make it official, it’s time to set off the panic alarm for the Jets. Let’s be clear about this one: we have had enough. I mean, enough with the cautionary tales, with the offensive extravaganzas, with the media-grabbing circus; it’s time to start winning some games. The Jets kicked off the season with flying colors behind Mark Sanchez, who completed one of his finest games in his career against the Buffalo Bills. But it’s all been down hill since. Sure enough, if you look at their record, at 2-2 for the season, things are not that bad.
What’s more bothering here is a whole other issue. They look sloppy on the field, they really don’t seem to have a clue how to get their offense running. Forget the fact that they went on to hire Tim Tebow as if he was going to be the answer. Rex Ryan, the Jets head coach, just doesn’t seem to know what to do with Tebow and Sanchez, and the San Francisco 49ers took advantage of this to humiliate the Jets to a 34-0 pummeling win at New York.
The San Francisco 49ers showed out there that they have what it takes to go deep into the postseason this year. This guys have a solid running game, a bombproof defense, they even managed to play the wild-cat offense at times, and their special teams were as effective as one could ever wish for. The 49ers quarterback, Alex Smith guided San Fran’s efforts with 12 of 21 passing for 143 yards. He knew well that a win at the Met Life stadium in Rutherford New Jersey was a must. At 3-1 for the season, things are good for the 49ers. Now, their loss last week to the Minnesota Vikings was certainly when they looked more vulnerable as we’ve seen them in a couple years. So winning here was important. They needed this motivational boost. “For sure, the whole week there was more of an edge; it was just a bad taste in your mouth,” Alex Smith said in the postgame press conference. “I don’t think that goes away in one day. We wanted to be 3-1 and got it done.”
The 49ers played everything they had in the book. Or at least they gave the Jets a good idea of how one is supposed to set up an offensive strike. The 49ers running game was flawless, they went on to run for 245 yards including a 51-yard returned fumble for a touchdown by Carlos Rogers. As if that was not enough, Frank Gore, Kendall Hunter and backup quarterback Colin Kaepernick, relying on a wildcat-like option, all ran for scores. As a matter of fact, it was Kaepernick, who pulled off the sort of play that Rex Ryan though he would get from Tim Tebow in and out this season. The defense had an interception and three fumble recoveries, and special teams blocked Robert Malone’s punt to set up the final touchdown. It really seems that the 49ers are probably exactly what the Jets thought they were going to be this season.
Jim Harbaugh has proved once and again that he has made the 49ers his team. His decisions are a bit unique, but they work. He decided to have his team stay in eastern Ohio and practice at Youngstown State all week. A good call, I would go ahead and say considering how well they played in New Jersey. Now, let’s see if they can be as dominant as they were last year.
It wasn’t an illegal action, but it sure enough wasn’t classy. We’ve seen it over and over again, teams that face a win-or-lose situation call a timeout before a kicker makes a field goal attempt in order to freeze him, to get him out of his concentration. Well, this time the whole thing backfired for the Miami Dolphins and the New York Jets marched away from the Sun Life Stadium in Miami with a important win on the road. The Jets Kicker Nick Folk received a second chance that gave the Jets a wild win after his blocked field-goal attempt in overtime was pardoned because of a Dolphins timeout. When he squared again to take his second kick, he successfully kicked 33-yarder with 6:04 left, for the Jets to beat the Dolphins 23-20 on Sunday.
The New York Jets quarterback Mark Sanchez had a solid game. He managed to connect with Santonio Holmes for a 38-yard gain to set up the winnig kick. Two plays later, Folk’s field goal attempt was blocked by Randy Starks charging up the middle. The officials whistled the play dead just as the ball was snapped because Dolphins coach Joe Philbin had called timeout. I insist: it was really a very bad call by the coaching staff from Miami. “I thought it was the right call,” Philbin said. “I was planning all along to call timeout right before he kicked the ball. Typically we’re going to ice the kicker.” Risky business. It was ultimately costs him the game. At the end, not even the Dolphins could believe their luck ultimately. “You never see that happen,” Miami quarterback Ryan Tannehill said. “It’s a weird thing. It’s one of those things where you say the odds were not in your favor today. It just wasn’t meant to be.”
That’s not all, as a matter of fact the Dolphins had a chance to close the deal just a few minutes before that. Dan Carpenter was wide left on a 48-yard field-goal attempt that would have given them the victory. Carpenter also missed from 47 yards early in the fourth quarter. It was certainly not Carpenter’s best night, but the late call by Philbin just blew it off the charts. Still, the Jets kept on relying their offensive game on Mark Sanchez. He finished off the night with 21 of 45 passing for 306 yards, 1 touchdown pass and one interception.
Tim Tebow, on the other hand, took a little action. He called a fake punt and ran for 5 yards and a first down, but otherwise again contributed little to the Jets’ offense. He still has yet to throw a pass this year. And it’s a bit worrying when in a third down, your game plan includes sending a pass from Sanchez to Tebow. It’s hard to watch that sort of play in the field, particularly because the ball bounced off Tebow’s helmet, and even consider for a moment that Rex Ryan is taking this one seriously.
Mark Sanchez has some work to do still. I mean, at 2-1 for the season, things are not that bad, but quite frankly there’s plenty of space for improvement. He twice missed open receivers for potential scores, made several wild throws and had a handful of passes dropped. He did, however, show a bit of his character at the end. His 7-yard touchdown pass to Jeremy Kerley with 3:01 gave the Jets their first lead, 20-17.
So here is the thing, the New York Jets had been severely criticized during the off-season for their seemingly pathological need to make the sports news highlights. Be it from the still controversial signing of Tim Tebow while keeping Mark Sanchez around, to the excessive fighting during the first weeks of training camp or what was certainly a very low performing offense in the preseason. Still, despite the fact that it took the starting offensive lineup three warm-up games to finally score a touchdown, head coach Rex Ryan insisted that they were just fine. And that’s exactly how they looked like against the Buffalo Bills on Sunday. There was no signs of a low scoring offense in this game, rather, Mark Sanchez guided the Jets to a 48-28 win at the Met Life stadium.
There was plenty of Marc Sanchez in the field to even really need to rely even a bit on the young Tim Tebow. He wanted to come out and make a bi statement: this is still his team. And Sanchez lived up to that expectation. Sanchez guided the New York Jets offense to a 1-0 start with 19 of 27 passing for 266 yards including three touchdown passes, two to rookie Stephen Hill. Jeremy Kerley made a bit of an attention grabbing play all by himself with a touchdown catch and a punt return for a score, and Antonio Cromartie took one of New York’s three interceptions of Ryan Fitzpatrick to the end zone. So yes, this offensive was as productive as you could ever ask for.
Now, it was not all chocolate and roses for the Jets. There is still plenty of room for improvement and these guys know it well. The defensive end, on the one side, needs to really improve their game. The Jets allowed 195 yards rushing, including a career-high 169 by C.J. Spiller. Had Sanchez and his wide receivers not been as prolific as they were on this game, the story could had been a bit different against the Bills. Then again, Buffalo really never represented much of a challenge for this squad. On the one hand, their quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick finished off the night with 18 of 32 passing for 195 yards with 3 touchdowns but very costly 3 interceptions that simply kept them from having a chance to stay in the game.
This was also the very anticipated debut of two recently traded players. It was the first time we officially saw Tebow wearing the Jets colors in a game. He wasn’t really much of a factor. It’s unclear whether this is so because he didn’t need to, or because he couldn’t. All we can say is that he worked in the wildcat a little bit and also recovered a late onside kick by Buffalo. But he was received with a booing crowd when he failed to gain a yard when he took a direct snap in the second quarter. This was also the Bills defensive end Mario Williams debut. He was not really a factor at all and he finished with just one tackle. Stay tuned for more NFL coverage.