The Jets are 2-2 to start the season, but the standings don’t even begin to tell the whole story.
The Jets are a struggling team right now, and fans are nervous that they will falter once again with Mark Sanchez at the helm. Gang Green is coming off of an abysmal 34-0 loss at home to the San Francisco 49ers. The Jets won the previous week in a shaky game against the Miami Dolphins; one that many thought they would win handily. Sanchez has been inconsistent thus far, completing only 49 percent of his passes and turning the ball over six times — only throwing for five touchdowns.
The running game is also struggling, which has complicated Sanchez’s problems. Shonn Greene is only getting 2.8 yards per carry, which is certainly not enough for an offense that relies on the running game to open up the rest of their playbook, including the crucial play-action pass.
As many saw coming, Sanchez’s struggles have led to calls for Tim Tebow to take over as the new quarterback. It has been unclear what Tebow’s role would be on the team ever since he was signed. Thus far, he has played a minimal role on special teams and has run the ball a few times out of the wildcat formation. Many fans want to see what the ex-Gator can do if given the chance to be a playmaker like he was with the Denver Broncos last year.
Such unrest will only complicate Sanchez’s seemingly fragile psyche and damage his composure under pressure in game action. Rex Ryan has repeatedly said, “Sanchez is our guy.” However, that excuse is wearing thin for many Jets fans.
In addition to the underperformance and a brewing quarterback controversy, the Jets’ locker room has been an injury ward early on this season. Both the offensive and defensive sides of the ball have been decimated by injuries. Cornerback Darrelle Revis tore his anterior cruciate ligament last week against Miami and is out for the season. In a similar non-contact injury, the Jets number one receiver Santonio Holmes injured his foot against the 49ers this week. According to the Jets, he is expected to miss multiple games. Just how many games he will miss is yet to be determined because he is awaiting the results of an MRI. Also, standout rookie wide receiver Stephen Hill is experiencing trouble with his hamstring, which forced him out this past week. The lack of his two deep pass threats will be another factor in Sanchez’s struggles.
There’s an old phrase in sports that “winning cures everything.” This is especially true for the Jets. If Gang Green can find a way to beat the surging Houston Texans next week, they will put many of these fears to rest — for now. A win will also bring about much-needed confidence for Sanchez and faith from the fan base. He did lead the Jets to two straight American Football Conference Championship Games. That counts for something, right?
A version of this article appeared in the Tuesday, Oct. 2 print edition. Christopher Marcotrigiano is a contributing columnist. Email him at email@example.com.
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