Special to the AmNews
There was a time, win or lose, when the New York Jets and their head coach, Rex Ryan, only had to compete against the Giants, their MetLife roommate, for trending back page headlines. But with demands for impeachment of the NFL commissioner and transparency in the NFL front office, and the off-field issues currently plaguing several high-profile players, it’s really hard for the Jets to compete against the domestic violence, corporal punishment, new drug testing policies, indictments, due process, convictions, appeals and deactivations involving NFL players without a simple win. After all, even our president has taken questions regarding these matters.
Before we begin to formulate opinions, pass judgement and MRI the Jets the way the public has done with Ray Rice, Roger Goodell, Greg Hardy, Ray McDonald and Adrian Petersen, let’s wait until Monday’s home game against the Chicago Bears.
There’s no doubt that losses create distance between a team and the playoffs, but to their credit, the Jets were formidable Green Bay Packer opponents for the first half of Sunday’s game. They challenged Aaron Rodgers’ resume as the “Legend of Lambeau Field.” Like the Seattle Seahawks the week before, the Jets were able to get to Rodgers. Big on take-aways, they got one early. They got sevens. Green Bay got threes. For the first two quarters, they did lead.
It’s apparent that the Jets have the ability to win. There’s nothing questionable about their intentions, unlike media outlets who refused to show recent injuries of basketball players Kevin Ware (Louisville Cardinals) and Paul George (Indiana Pacers) because of the graphic nature of the footage, yet the Rice elevator footage is replayed at every opportunity. Footage of Sunday’s Jets game shows their defense giving up 31 points to their 24. Were they overmatched? Did they lack communication? Were the refs at fault?
Cornerback Dee Milliner, who’s been injured since preseason, had an unspectacular return. Star receiver Eric Decker was lamed in the second half, when he was desperately needed. Maybe that was the real reason for their defeat. Monday night’s outcome should determine how we judge, so grade them on Chicago.