The Morning After: Jets vs. Ravens

posted by: Site Admin | Jets Preseason | 0 comments

The Morning After: Jets vs. Ravens

Another preseason game is in the bag, but the Jets' quarterback situation seems to be as inconclusive as it was before preseason even began. Both QB Mark Sanchez and QB Kellen Clemens struggled last night, both threw interceptions returned for touchdowns. Sanchez went 3 of 8 for 43 yards, 1 TD, 1 INT. Clemens was 5 of 10 for 60 yards, 1 TD, 1 INT.

Sanchez did rebound at the end of his outing when he threw a touchdown pass to RB Leon Washington, but is that enough to claim the starting job?

Sanchez is obviously far from being ready to be a solid starter in this league. He is, however, on about the same level as Kellen Clemens, maybe even a bit better. Will it benefit or hurt him if he starts in his rookie year? There are quite a few examples of players who were in similar situations. It sure worked out well for the likes of Peyton Manning (3-13 in his rookie season) and Troy Aikman (0-11 as a starter in his rookie season), who gained valuable experience and went on to win Super Bowls. Then, we can recall the example of David Carr who was sacked 76 times in his rookie season, while his team finished 4-12. The first few seasons with the Texans obviously affected Carr's confidence and he never became the player many hoped he would be. The Jets of 2009 definitely have a better offensive line and supporting cast than the expansion Texans, but throwing Sanchez' to the wolves in his rookie season is still a risk. He could benefit from spending the season on the bench, but who can he really learn from? Tom Brady had Drew Bledsoe to show him the ropes, Chad Pennington had Vinny Testaverde... Who does Sanchez have? Kellen Clemens!?!?!?

RB Leon Washington was the best player on the team tonight (what else is new?). Leon had a 52-yard kickoff return in the first quarter, and then added 48 rushing and 35 receiving yards.

WR David Clowney, a.k.a. Mr. August, once again had an impressive preseason game. He had 3 passes thrown to him, caught 2 of them for 33 yards, including a 28-yard touchdown pass from Kellen Clemens. This time he also followed with a boneheaded post touchdown celebration that resulted in a 15-yard penalty.

S Kerry Rhodes impressed as well. He had 2 solo tackles and defended a pass. We might see a rebound season from Rhodes, who really did not play as a Pro Bowl caliber player last year.

CB Drew Coleman had an up and down game. He started really strong, recording a tackle for loss and a pass defense, but then got burned on a 43-yard pass play. He still, however, should get the nod in nickel over CB Dwight Lowery who was just awful. I am not sure what's going on with Lowery but after starting a few games last season and looking pretty solid, he's been steadily declining ever since.

Another player who's painful to watch is LB Vernon Gholston. I was watching him closely last night and once again Gholston failed to show anything that would give even some hope that he would be able to turn the corner and become a productive player. Undrafted rookie LB Jamaal Westerman, on the other hand, looked solid again and should lock a roster spot.

WR Brad Smith and WR Britt Davis both were horrendous. Both players had chances to make game-changing big plays and failed. Smith, who started alongside Cotchery, finished with zero catches despite having 3 passes thrown to him. Britt Davis caught 2 of 6 for 19 yards.

Last night's highlights:

Tags: mark sanchez, leon washington, kellen clemens, kerry rhodes, brad smith, dwight lowery, vernon gholston


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