Tag Archives: NJ Jets

HAVE THE JETS DONE TOO MUCH?

                                                                                       Kallas Remarks by Steve Kallas

After a great run in the playoffs, you knew the Jets weren’t going to stand pat (no pun intended). They clearly made a decision to improve their team by taking players regardless of character. They look more and more like the Ravens of yesteryear.

But have the Jets done too much? Yes, they brought in a quality guy like LaDainian Tomlinson (hopefully nobody in New York will refer to him as LT – there’s only one of those and he played for the Giants), but a back who is past his prime. But they also brought in questionable guys like Santonio Holmes and Antonio Cromartie. And no matter what you think of him, Jet-hater Jason Taylor is on the down side. Yes, they seemed to have a pretty good draft with top cornerback prospect Kyle Wilson from Boise State and (maybe) offensive lineman Vladimir Ducasse from UMass and (maybe) running back Joe McKnight from USC.

BUT LOOK WHO THEY HAVE LOST!

It’s hard to believe that the Jets would virtually gut their running back tandem of Thomas Jones AND Leon Washington, bringing back neither. Yes, Shonn Greene played great for Gang Green. But are he and Tomlinson the answer? And can McKnight or anyone replace the returning threat and all-purpose yardage machine that is Washington? All of this remains to be seen.

Worse, from this angle, is the unceremonious dumping of the perennial Pro Bowl guard, Alan Faneca. A number of Jets seem particularly unhappy about this, none more so than his running buddy, center Nick Mangold. According to the New York Post, Mangold was actually eating dinner with Faneca at a steakhouse in Summit, New Jersey when Faneca got the call from Rex Ryan, telling him that he was cut.

Not only did Mangold tell the Post that the decision was “very disappointing and difficult to deal with,” he showed how tough it’s going to be for any new guy (Ducasse?) to step in by saying “I’m going into my fifth year and I still don’t know exactly everything about the [Jets’] system.”

Translation: It’s going to be very hard to replace this guy and still be the line of a year ago.

SO, WHERE DOES THIS LEAVE THE JETS?

It leaves them battling again with the always-dangerous Patriots and the improving Dolphins. While it’s not the NFC East, it is one of the toughest divisions in football. With the questionable chemistry, the character, all of these new guys, it says here that it’s going to be very hard to beat the Patriots for the division or to go as far as they went last year.

© Copyright 2010 by Steve Kallas.  All rights reserved.

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SANCHEZ JETS’ QB BY DEFAULT; TIME FOR REX RYAN TO BE QUIET AND WIN SOME GAMES

                                Kallas Remarks by Steve Kallas

Nobody was really surprised when Jet coach Rex Ryan named rookie quarterback Mark Sanchez the starter for now and the future.  Kellen Clemens was, of course, disappointed, but he was in no position to complain.  The only way he could have been named the starter was to play out of his mind and have Sanchez fall on his face.  While Sanchez almost (but not quite) fell on his face, Clemens never rose above mediocrity.  So, it’s Sanchez’s job. 

WHAT IF? 

It might have been a more interesting (closer?) decision if Ray Lewis could have caught a Sanchez pass that hit him in the hands.  Sanchez had already thrown an interception for a touchdown and, while dropping back to pass on his next possession, never looked Lewis off and literally threw a pass right to him.  But Lewis dropped the ball (it looked like he would have easily returned it for a touchdown).

Everyone (announcers, coaches, players) seemed really excited that Sanchez “came back from adversity” to hit Leon Washington for a touchdown later in the first half.  While not to take anything away from Sanchez (he did show a lot of poise and the Ravens started the game with more of a regular-season edge), the reality is that, when he threw that TD pass, Ray Lewis was on the sidelines, Ed Reed was on the sidelines and Terrell Suggs hadn’t played at all.

 WHAT ABOUT KELLEN CLEMENS?

 Well, Kellen Clemens really has nothing to complain about.  Everybody knew he had to win the job hands down.  And it certainly was there for the taking given the play of Mark Sanchez.  But Clemens came in and immediately threw his own bad interception that was returned for a touchdown. 

Rex Ryan called his decision a “gut” decision to give the job to Sanchez and Clemens, frankly, never did much to make it a close call.  Some have noted Clemens 12 interceptions in scrimmages to Sanchez’s five, but it’s a little scary that intra-squad scrimmage statistics are being kept and, arguably, were a major factor in the decision (because they both played so poorly against the Ravens). 

WHY DOES REX RYAN FEEL SO COMPELLED TO TALK ABOUT THE PATRIOTS?

 It’s almost bizarre that, since the day of his first press conference (where he, essentially, promised a Super Bowl in the next couple of seasons), Rex Ryan feels that it’s necessary to take shots at Bill Belichick and the Patriots.  He said things like he’s not going to kiss Bill Belichick’s rings, that “I’m just letting him know I’m not intimidated by him” and “you don’t win and beat a Bill Belichick-coached team by tiptoeing up there.”

While all Jet fans agree with that sentiment, it’s been, for the most part, decades of talk and very little action.  Why upset Belichick (assuming he even cares what Ryan says, a big assumption)?  Belichick makes his living by eating up young quarterbacks.  And while the Patriots clearly don’t have the greatest defense (although they do have the greatest offense), you know it’s the scheme that Belichick puts in place to confuse these quarterbacks almost as much as the personnel.  Somehow, you have to think there’s going to be a little extra put into the game plan against the Jets.  That’s not a good thing for Rex Ryan, Mark Sanchez or any Jet player. 

I don’t recall seeing a Bill Belichick-quote that said Rex Ryan is going to be intimidated by anyone.  So, if you’re Rex Ryan, why even bring it up? 

DOES MARK SANCHEZ = JOE FLACCO? 

Actually, the better question is does the Jets defense and the other offensive players (besides the QB) equal the Ravens defense and the other offensive players (besides the QB).  The answer here is no.  

When Kris Jenkins and Darrelle Revis actually play, the Jets have a chance to be a very good defense.  But they’re not the Ravens.  Offensively, well, even if it’s a wash (and it probably isn’t), Sanchez is going to have to step up like Flacco did.  And while the Ravens didn’t ask Flacco to “do too much,” he’s a physical specimen with an excellent arm who did plenty to help the Ravens win. 

That’s a lot to ask of the Jets and Mark Sanchez this season.  

© Copyright 2009 by Steve Kallas.  All rights reserved.

BRETT FAVRE – END (?) OF AN ERROR

                               Kallas Remarks by Steve Kallas

    

Is it the end of the road for Brett Favre?  Well, if you’re a Jets fan, you’ve been brutally disappointed the last four weeks.  Cruising along at 8-3 after wins over the (at the time) undefeated Titans and the still-very-good Patriots, everything was wonderful in Jet land.  But a funny thing happened on the way to an AFC East Division Title and the playoffs.  Favre went very bad, very quickly and the Jets are on the verge of a huge collapse (and, given their easy schedule, arguably one of the greatest collapses ever).

    

A home loss (34-17) to OK Denver (now in the midst of a huge collapse of their own), a road loss to improving, at least, San Francisco, a miracle home gift win against Buffalo and then the disaster in Seattle has put them on the brink of Nowheresville.  And it doesn’t look like they will make the playoffs.  They’ll need a minor miracle to beat the Dolphins AND have either the Patriots or the Ravens lose to make the playoffs.

 

SO, WHAT HAPPENED TO BRETT FAVRE?

     

Well, he’s been good, not great, until the last four games.  Many thought that the Jets simply ran a Chad Pennington offense with a guy who has a much better arm.  But Favre throws a great short ball and, unlike last year, the Jets actually have a very good running game with Thomas Jones and with (inexplicably) a hardly-used Leon Washington.

    

Then, in the last four games, Favre fell off a cliff, never getting a QB rating over 62 and throwing 1 (one) TD to six interceptions.  When you consider the competition, these numbers become even more woeful.

 

IS BRETT HURT?

      

That seems to be the latest coming out of Brett-land.  But, if true, this guy has all but killed the Jet chances of making the playoffs by, what, being a hero?  If his shoulder is really hurt (although he hit Laveranues Coles in the numbers on that long fourth-down pass (incomplete) late in the game against Seattle), then he hurt his team showing us how tough he is.  If true, he put himself (and his streak?) ahead of the team.  If not true, he’s really regressed this year.  Would the Jets have had a better chance with another QB in the last four games?  Well, you can make a case that the answer to that is yes.

     

IS BRETT COMING BACK NEXT YEAR?

      

It doesn’t really matter, does it?  This was the year, with Brady’s injury, that the Jets could have made some real noise.  Their owner went out and spent a ton of money (and, to his credit, that was before Brady got hurt) and, after 11 games, the Jets were really in the mix.  But, as for next year, with Brady (and Maroney and Thomas and, maybe, Harrison back), it’s hard to believe that the Jets, with or without Favre (and probably with a tougher schedule), will make any noise in the AFC East.  The Dolphins haven’t passed them talent-wise but, by next season, they may very well be a better team with a better QB (some would argue that they already are better in both departments).

      

WILL BRETT ANNOUNCE HIS RETIREMENT AFTER THE GAME?

      

Does it matter?  You can’t believe anything he says on this issue.  It gets sickening every year to watch the back and forth for weeks (months?).  Will he or won’t he?  He’s decided.  He hasn’t decided.  He’s changed his mind.  News at 11.  The Jets might have been better off moving forward with Chad Pennington and (maybe) developing (or, at least, drafting) another QB.  Is Kellen Clemens the answer?  I don’t know and neither do you.  His growth has been stunted (stopped?) for still another season (and for yet another if Brett comes back to New York next season).

      

WHAT ABOUT THE COACH?

       

 Well, he’s tried to do things the Belichick way and, while commendable, there’s only one Bill Belichick.  Once the bring-Favre-to-New-York decision was made, his hands were, to some degree, tied.  But he’s mysteriously made Leon Washington disappear in the offense and certainly has had some trouble with play-calling and half-time adjustments (some would be harsher and say what half-time adjustments?).

      

But this is a very young coach in a very tough division who has had a winning record in two of his three years as a HC in the NFL.  It says here that he deserves another year.  But, quite frankly, next year might be worse than this year.  If that’s possible.  We’ll see.    

    

© Copyright 2008 by Steve Kallas.  All rights reserved.