The Jets Start Out Preseason With Much Of The Same Old Same Old Losing To Detroit
It took only 4 plays for Mark Sanchez to remind Jet fans why he has become the target of their ire.
On that 4th play, a screen pass by Sanchez was thrown right to Detroit Lions rookie defensive lineman Ziggy Ansah, the 5th overall pick in the 1st round, and returned for a touchdown from 14 yards out. Jets quickly in a hole. A repeated mantra we Jet fans have heard and seen too many times. Sanchez's 52 turnovers the last 2 years are proof of that.
However Sanchez bounced back and played well overall, hitting 10-13 passes on the night, including a nice touchdown pass to tight end Jeff Cumberland, who rumbled 26 yards for a score. Sanchez wasn't sacked and played the entire 1st quarter as he fights for his starting job against rookie Geno Smith.
That the Jets eventually lost 26-17 means little really as the outcomes don't count. Remember just a few years ago it was these Lions that went 4-0 in the preseason and finished the regular season 0-16, the only team to ever go 0-16 in 1 regular season.
Back to Geno. He came in and did a decent job for his 1st NFL game, but as is the Jets way Smith pulled up lame, appearing to sprain his ankle while taking off and running to avoid a pass rush. The Jets say the ankle won't stop Smith from playing in the next preseason game, which takes place this coming Saturday, at home, vs the Jacksonville Jaguars.
Smith's stats weren't bad for his 1st NFL game action. 6 of 7 through the air for 47 yards. The jets didn't score with Smith at the helm.
Smith played the entire 2nd quarter after Sanchez played the entire 1st. Smith started the 3rd quarter but on the 1st series jammed his ankle into the turf.
Greg McElroy finished out the game and played well, even bringing the Jets back from a big deficit.
A 20-7 deficit at the half dissolved after 3 quarters as McElroy threw a TD pass to Zack Rogers from 11 yards out. The teams exchanged field goals before the 3rd quarter ended, making the score 23-17 after 3.
Detroit kicked another field goal in the 4th for the winning margin.
Other notes from this opener. The Jets were bad on 3rd down conversions, going 3-11. However on defense they got the Lions off the field on 3rd down, stopping the high flying Lions on 12 of 16 3rd down attempts. The Jets also had 3 sacks, a critical area for the team to improve on.
1 other area the head coach Rex Ryan bemoaned-Penalties. The jets committed 11 infractions, an area they MUST clean up since their talent level is thin. They must play more disciplined football and they have 3 more meaningless game to clean some of that sloppy stuff off.