Week 7: New York Jets @ New England Patriots
Mark Sanchez: 28/41, 328 yards, 1 TD, 1 INT, 1 fumble
A difficult performance to evaluate. There was much to like about Sanchez’ performance: he made several big plays and by and large, he was quite accurate. The safety was not his fault. What was his fault: waiting too long to pull the trigger on a potential touchdown to Stephen Hill, which resulted in an interception. There was, of course, the sack/fumble to lose the game in overtime, an event that has become all the more predictable with this guy.
Running Backs: B-
Greene: 16/54/1, 6 receptions for 34 yards
Shonn Greene was efficient in limited touches and contributed quite a few catches before suffering an unknown injury. He’s 7/7 on 3rd & 1 conversions on the year. He did return to the game. McKnight toughed out his injury to provide a spark, at times.
Offensive Line: C+
The offensive line did a good job in the running game, but they did get blown up at the line of scrimmage once, causing a safety. The pass blocking left a lot to be desired.
Wide Receivers/Tight Ends: B+
A very mixed bag here. Stephen Hill’s drop late in the game cost the team – big time. Dustin Keller did have a big game though, and so did Jeremy Kerley.
Defensive Line: B+
They obviously don’t have the closing speed to reach the quarterback, but the pressure was pretty good. They limited what has become a very effective New England ground game.
Along with the line, they did a great job against the run, but they still have to improve their pass rush.
Brady was accurate on the day, as usual, but the Jets really limited the amount of opportunities. Cromartie, once again, had an excellent game.
Special Teams: C-
Any time you give up a kick return for a touchdown, it’s a bad game. One bright spot: Nick Folk was 3/3 on the day including a low percentage field goal, and he remains perfect for the season
Sparano mixed up his calls effectively, but working out of the shotgun on 3rd and 1 from the New England 2 yard line was a huge mistake, especially when they had been running with great power up until that point. That took 7 points off the Jets scoreboard. Then again, if not for Sanchez’ poor timing on a deep ball to Stephen Hill, there would have been another touchdown on the board to negate that mistake. If this was just about the offensive playcalling, the grade might be lower – but it isn’t. The Jets only surrendered 26 points in regulation – and the defense was only responsible for 17 of those points. Any time you limit the Patriots to 17 points, you know you’ve made a few good calls.