Jets vs. Jaguars: What we learned

 

It was a preseason game and by its very nature, was never going to be very interesting.

The Jets’ 37-13 win over Jaguars on Saturday night did little to shake out the depth chart, meaning there are plenty of question marks ahead of the team’s third preseason game against the Giants next Saturday.

In particular, the Jets are left wondering what to make of their quarterback competition. They got a mixed bag from Mark Sanchez, who started strong then fizzled as the first half wore on. With Geno Smith watching from the sidelines on the Will Not Play list, it was Sanchez who orchestrated a masterful opening drive as he went 3-for-3 for 48 yards including a 23-yard touchdown to tight end Jeff Cumberland. But he went on to throw a red-zone interception on the Jets’ third offensive series and squandered a chance at points late in the first half.

With six seconds left in the first half and just six yards from the end zone, Sanchez rolled out and ate up the remainder of the clock rather than throw the ball out of bounds and bring on the field-goal unit. It was a puzzling choice for a veteran quarterback who should know better.

“That won’t happen again, shouldn’t have happened,” Sanchez said. “I know better than that.”

Not surprisingly, head coach Rex Ryan took the heat for the gaffe at the end of the first half.

“I’ll take the responsibility for that one,” Ryan said. “I knew it’d be tight.”

Sanchez’s play in the second half against the Jaguars second-team defense was an improvement, going 5-for-8 for 87 yards in the quarter. In the end, he didn’t do enough to lose the job, but he didn’t coronate himself the starter either.

What we learned …

1. Gates opens a door

With Joe McKnight sidelined with an injury, Clyde Gates stepped into the kickoff return role and looked more than capable. On his first two kickoffs, Gates had returns of 44 yards and 37 yards, producing a

highlight-reel spin move in the process. However, Gates, who did well in the preseason opener at Detroit with three receptions for 39 yards, failed to register a catch on Saturday night. He was targeted twice against the Jaguars but failed to haul one in.

2. Defense looks horrible

What was supposed to be the team’s strength was instead a liability as the Jaguars’ up-tempo offense ran roughshod over the Jets defense. Linebacker David Harris looked washed up, struggling in coverage and drawing a penalty for a hit out of bounds. Quinton Coples suffered a leg injury and didn’t play much of the second quarter, but when he was on the field was consistently lost in space.

“Our defensive intensity in the first half was not up to New York Jets standards certainly,” Ryan said. “You can tell when the intensity is there, you’re going to tackle, you’re going to run to the ball, you’re going to do all those things that epitomize New York Jets defense. Quite honestly, we struggled with that.”

The second unit did much better as linebackers Garrett McIntyre and Ricky Sapp, who had a sack, both put in solid shifts. Cornerback Darrin Walls also pieced together some good work. Ryan praised the second-team unit as “certainly being ready to play.”

“They did a tremendous job,” Ryan said. “The defensive intensity was outstanding by the second group.”

3. Ground gains

Running back Chris Ivory, finally healthy from a lingering hamstring injury at the start of training camp, made his debut but had only 13 rushing yards on six carries. He did show good burst when the holes opened up and the potential to be a part of the running back rotation. Bilal Powell earned praise from his head coach with seven carries for 68 yards and also did a good job of blocking in the backfield. And it is hard not to like the effort by Kahlil Bell, who carried 11 times for 29 yards and two touchdowns. With Mike Goodson still not in camp and McKnight having a tough time with injuries, the Jets needed positive gains from their backfield and they got just that.

Follow Jets beat writer Kristian Dyer on Twitter @KristianRDyer.



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

Gunther from 'Friends' talks Central Perk

We spoke with Gunther (James Michael Tyler) at the preview for new pop-up Central Perk, based on the cafe in "Friends."

Local

Central Perk opens in SoHo

Central Perk, of "Friends" fame, is giving out free coffee in SoHo through Oct. 18.

National

Beer sponsor Anheuser-Busch reproaches NFL over domestic abuse

Anheuser-Busch chastised the NFL for its handling of domestic violence cases, making it the first major advertiser to put pressure on the league.

Local

Sen. Krueger dishes on prospect of legal marijuana…

New Yorkers may see the legalization of recreational marijuana use as early as 2015 if State Senator Liz Krueger (D) gets her way. The Marijuana Regulation and Taxation Act will…

Music

FREEMAN makes Freeman a free man from Ween

For nearly 30 years, Aaron Freeman was known endearingly to his listeners as Gene Ween. But with "FREEMAN," he makes it clear that he's gone somewhere else.

Television

'Outlander' recap: Season 1, Episode 6: 'The Garrison…

Whipping, punching, kicking and a marriage contract. "Outlander" is not for the faint of heart this week with "The Garrison Commander."

The Word

The Word: Hey girl, it's a girl for…

It's a girl for Ryan Gosling and Eva Mendes, who reportedly welcomed a daughter last Friday, according to Us Weekly. The super-private couple managed to…

Television

TV watch list, Tuesday, Sept. 16: 'New Girl,'…

Check out the season premiere of "New Girl," as Jess competes with Jessica Biel for a guy's attentions.

MLB

5 top contenders for NL Rookie of the…

The outing rekindled award talk for deGrom, who appears to hold the top spot for NL Rookie of the Year honors. Metro breaks down a few other contenders.

College

College football Top 25 poll (AP rankings)

College football Top 25 poll (AP rankings)

NFL

Tom Coughlin says Giants 'beat themselves' against Cardinals

Head coach Tom Coughlin, who had a day to cool off and reflect, still sounded like he had a gnawing feeling in his gut.

NFL

Marty Mornhinweg accepts blame for Jets timeout fiasco

Jets fans looking for a scapegoat for Sunday’s timeout fiasco found a willing party on Monday: Marty Mornhinweg.

Style

Rachel Zoe: New York Fashion Week Spring 15

Rachel Zoe goes 'Glam bohemia' for Spring.

Food

Where to find SweeTango apples

Introduced in 2009, SweeTango — a hybrid of Honeycrisp and Zestar — is a sweet apple with plenty of crunch.

Style

London Fashion Week recap

London Fashion week gets in on the action with politics, heritage and summertime living.

Food

Padma Lakshmi's recipe for green mango curry

Padma Lakshmi shares her recipe for green mango curry in UNICEF's new book, "UNICHEF."