East Rutherford, NJ – The Jets won’t be in the playoffs, but they’ve certainly distanced themselves from the very bottom of ESPN’s power rankings. After today’s 24-13 win over the Cleveland Browns (4-11) at home give the Jets a chance to finish .500. The Jets finish their 2013 with a 6-2 record at home.
If the Jets finish at that point, the decision to fire Rex sitting on the shoulders of Woody Johnson and John Idzik will start to feel heavier. This is the third consecutive year the Jets haven’t made the playoffs coming off of two consecutive AFC Championship appearances. He mentioned potentially being on the chopping block during one of last night’s meetings. It was motivational. The player’s coach asked the players to help him out.
Today was a good day for the struggling rookies. The Geno Smith we hadn’t seen since Week 5. He threw for 214 yards and completed 20 of his 36 pass attempts. You’ve seen glimmers of growth over the past three games, but today it culminated. It was the first game in the last six games Smith didn’t throw an interception. He was accounted for all three Jets touchdowns. Smith did this all under the pressure of a solid defense, who’s recently made other quarterbacks, like Brady, Brees, and Kaepernick look rough. The offense picked up in the second quarter. They converted 12 of 18 third downs, which was the highest conversion rate of the season.
Dee Milliner did it everyone! He got his first career interception! Milliner slowed down the leagues hottest receiver, Josh Gordon, who was targeted 16 times and only caught 6. Gordon dropped 3 passes, two of which were in the end zone. Interestingly, Cromartie wasn’t assigned to him. The rookie safety defended five passes and led the team with nine tackles. For safeties, confidence is key and based on his game, it looks like his could be elevating.
David Nelson, who was with the Browns this past preseason, got his first touchdown as a Jet today…and decided to make that two. It was the first time in his career and scored two touchdowns in a game. He had four catches for 33 yards.
The Jets offense gained 422 total yards on the day, marking their second game of the season in which they have broken the 400-yard plateau. Their last 400+ game was against Buffalo on September 22.
The offensive line was phenomenal. They helped pave the way for an awesome run day. Chris Ivory, always easily to spot from the press box because of his long dreads, had 109 yards, 5.5 yards per carry. Bilal Powell had some explosive long runs. He went for 54 yards and 7.7 yards per carry. The run game was able to perform well against the Browns who have a top 10 run defense. The o-line kept a clean pocket for Geno and prevented him from getting sacked. It’s not as if the Browns struggle at sacking the QB. They had 39 total sacks going into this game.
The defense was true to form. They only allowed 283 total yards, and 13 points. They turned 2 potential Browns touchdowns into field goals. They had 3 sacks and 2 picks. There was only one hiccup. 43 of the 109 running yards came from 3 carries from non-running backs. One long run came from Josh Gordon, the other game from Jason Campbell.
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