Jets drop to 3-3 with uninspired performance against Steelers

Antonio Cromartie
Antonio Cromartie, who was banged up in practice this week, was beaten by receivers all day.
Credit: Getty Images

All the talk of a statement game went out the window for the Jets, who were physically manhandled by the winless Steelers, 19-6.

On offense, the Jets struggled to find any rhythm and looked particularly horrid in the second half, where they didn’t generate any points and had two turnovers.

Nick Folk had two field goals in the first quarter and right before halftime, while Steelers kicker Shaun Suisham had three field goals in the second quarter to give the visitors a 9-6 lead heading into halftime.

Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger settled down and frustrated the Jets secondary after being hit hard early in the game. In particular, cornerback Antonio Cromartie struggled against Steelers wide receiver Emmanuel Sanders, who had a 55-yard touchdown catch early in the third quarter to give the Steelers a 16-6 lead.

After a week of talking about the Jets’ surprising start to the season, the Steelers were the ones who played like a postseason-caliber team, their 1-4 record notwithstanding. Now 3-3, the Jets are suddenly looking like a team without an identity.

What went wrong …

1. Ho-hum Geno

Coming off what was a statement game on Monday night against the Falcons when he was 16-for-20 for 199 yards with three touchdowns, Smith was positively underwhelming as he went 18-for-33 for 192 yards and two interceptions. The game had the potential all along to be a nightmare for Smith as Steelers long-time defensive coordinator Dick LeBeau entered the game 15-2 lifetime against rookie quarterbacks. He looked dumbfounded against the Steelers’ coverage packages and compounded the matter when he held onto the ball too long, resulting in being sacked three times. Then there was his third quarter interception, where he threw into triple coverage. Not a good game for a player who looked like the franchise the week before.

2. No Winslow

The Jets announced on Friday tight end Kellen Winslow was suspended by the league for four games for violation of the league’s policy on performance-enhancing drugs. The loss of Winslow is huge for the Jets, given his chemistry with Smith. He entered Week 6 as the Jets’ leading receiver with 17 catches and he is also still tied for the team lead with two touchdowns. After a breakout game against the Falcons, tight end Jeff Cumberland stepped into a starting role but he had difficulty finding space against the Steelers linebackers. Cumberland did relatively well with four receptions for 59 yards but without Winslow, they lacked a play maker at the position.

3. Ground to a halt

There are no excuses for the Jets not to be running the ball better than this. The offensive line is blocking relatively well and they entered the game with three healthy running backs (though Bilal Powell did leave in the fourth quarter with an injury). But the Jets abandoned the run for good chunks of the game, which was surprising since their rookie quarterback struggled to find a rhythm. The running back tandem combined for just 75 rushing yards. That number won’t carry a rookie quarterback during his lulls.

Follow Jets beat writer Kristian Dyer on Twitter @KristianRDyer.


News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
National

Florida man charged with murdering son to play…

A Florida man annoyed that his 16-month-old crying son was preventing him from playing video games suffocated the toddler, police said on Friday.

International

Powerful 7.2 magnitude earthquake rattles Mexico

A powerful earthquake struck Mexico Friday, shaking buildings and sending people running into the street, although there were no reports of major damage.

News

OMG! Exercise can make skin (and butt) look…

A moderate exercise regime can turn back time and actually reverse the skin's aging process, according to new research. The study showed that a minimum…

Local

Oval oasis: Summer of fun kicks off this…

A bold partnership between the Fairmount Park Conservancy and the city's Parks and Recreation Department is kicking off this weekend with family activities re-activating this unused public space.

Entertainment

Whoopi Goldberg makes her debut as marijuana columnist

"It helps my head stop hurting, and with glaucoma your eyes ache, and she takes the ache out. It's wonderful," she said.

The Word

Kate Middleton made fun of Prince William's bald…

Kate Middleton and Prince William are in Sydney, Australia, right now, and it sounds like that brash Aussie sense of humor might be rubbing off.

The Word

Is Tom Cruise dating Laura Prepon?

"Mission: Impossible" star Cruise is said to be dating Laura Prepon, star of "Orange is the New Black."

Television

'Scandal' recap: Season 3, Episode 18, 'The Price…

Sally is Jesus, Olivia caused global warming, and Mellie's still drunk. Let's recap the Scandal finale. A church full of Washington insiders is about to…

MLB

Jimmy Rollins is key to Phillies success

When John Kruk was asked about what the Phillies need to contend for a playoff berth, the ESPN analyst said Jimmy Rollins needs to play like a MVP again.

MLB

Ben Revere lifts Phillies to avoid sweep

Ben Revere came through with a two-out RBI single against Atlanta’s tough lefthander Alex Wood.

NBA

Season wrap: 76ers make the grade

The 76ers opened the 2013-14 season with a victory over the Miami Heat. The Sixers closed the season with a win at Miami.

NBA

Fantasy basketball: Finding next year's NBA studs

Before we put the 2013-14 fantasy basketball season to bed, it’s worth thinking about next year’s breakouts while they’re fresh in our mind.

Parenting

How to parent without gender stereotypes in a…

Christia Spears Brown, Phd. author of "Parenting beyond Pink & Blue" gives advice on raising kids free of gender stereotypes.

Tech

VIDEO: 'Vein-scanning' may become the future of paying

Designed to make transactions quicker and easier, the technology works by scanning the unique vein patterns in each person's palm.

Tech

#FollowFriday: 10 of the smartest Twitter accounts

Spending lots of time on Twitter? You might as well learn something. Here are some of the smartest accounts to follow.

Style

Light-up nail art syncs with phone

This Japanese technology syncs light-up nail art with your phone.