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One Step Forward

By Tyson Rauch
When talking about the 2006 New York Jets there were many question marks and unknowns surrounding the team.  Who would be the quarterback? Could Jonathan Vilma fit into the new defense? Was Brian Schottenheimer the correct choice for offensive coordinator?  Could Eric Mangini get through to his players? 
Well after game one, a win against the Tennesse Titans some of these questions are starting to be answered.  The maligned Chad Pennington took clear control of the New York Jets offense, displaying his confidence with audibles prior to the snap and the maneuvering of players around the line of scrimmage.  In addition Chad showed his trademark accuracy with a velocity behind his throws that has not been seen in years.  But most importantly Pennington proved to his “new” Jets team that he can lead them to victory.   The Jets were on the verge of a meltdown but the composure of Pennington to lead them efficiently down the field and get them in the end zone reaffirms to both his teammates and coaches that he is the man to lead this team. 
Another encouraging sign for the Jets was the way the game was managed and called by Coach Mangini and his staff.  The play calling was creative and aggressive and kept the Tennesee Titans off guard.   A great moment was when the Jets were driving inside the 5 yard line and prepared to quick snap the ball catching the Titans off guard and forcing them to take a time out.  When was the last time a Jets team forced someone to do that? The offense does not seem content to settle for field goals and the defense not scared to send an all out blitz.   Jonathan Vilma was sent on blitzes from all over the field, safeties and corners interchanged positions and the linebackers were constantly applying pressure.  For the first time in years the Jets will be a team that opposing coaches will have to game plan for and will have sleepless nights doing so. 
The game was not perfect by any means with the struggles of Mike Nugent and his two  missed field goals and an extra point.  There were also some struggles stopping the run on defense and establishing the run on offense but it is clear progress is being made.  But as a long time Jets fan it was a satisfying feeling to see a team that was playing together, was focused and physical.  The upcoming game against the Patriots will be the next step in the process of building this team but the first step for this team was a positive one. 
Quick Hits:  
·         It was great to see Pennington and Coles get back to their ways and show off the chemistry they have together.  LC is a wide receiver that is often under appreciated but a healthy Chad can open people’s eyes once again to the gamer that this player is.  
·         Is it me or is Kerry Rhodes a Pro Bowl player in the making? 
·         Nice start for Cotcherry, smooth hands, elusive and a lot of energy.  And why did he not get playing time last year?
·         Isn’t it funny listening to all of the reporters kiss up to Pennington and his Jets? A lot of crow being served..hopefully it continues.  

This Article Was Written By Admin



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