Dalton had a clean pocket all day as he picked apart the Jets, throwing 5 TDs
The Jets' trend of alternating wins and losses continued on Sunday, delivering their worst performance of the season against a Bengals team which, frankly, was better than them in every aspect of the game. Here are my four takeaways from the 49-9 loss in Cincinnati.
1. Missing D
For the Jets to have a chance to win, especially on the road, their defense must show up every game day and that did not happen yesterday. The Bengals scored on their first drive and never looked back, converting what seemed like every 3rd down that stood between them and the endzone and turning each drive into 6 points. Geno Smith and the Jets' offense was down multiple scores before they converted their first 1st down. It's no position to put a rookie QB in (again, especially on the road) and led to Geno's worst performance of the season.
2. So what happened?
So what happened to one of the highest ranked overall defenses in the league? Well, it's kind of a chicken and egg scenario: the Jets have succeeded in pressuring the QB all season by sending just their front-4, a luxury afforded to them by the immense talent on their d-line. Yesterday, that didn't happen. They had virtually no pressure on Dalton, who picked apart the Jets' secondary as if it wasn't even there. One could argue that the secondary, which has been nowhere near as effective as the Jets' line this season, didn't give the line any time to get to Dalton. The truth lies somewhere in the middle -- nobody got it done yesterday.
3. Bad Geno
Yesterday we saw Bad Geno, who alternates places with Good Geno on a weekly basis. Down big on the scoreboard early, on the road, pressing for points and lacking any weapons with big play ability, Geno forced the ball into his receivers one too many times and was scorched for 2 pick 6's. He was also under pressure all day as the Jets' o-line succumbed to the Bengals' prolific pass rushers. Geno was pulled from the game in the 4th quarter for Matt Simms, which was as much of a move to save Geno's confidence as it was to get a glimpse of Simms in real NFL action.
4. Jeremy Cleary
You know things are going badly for the Jets when the CBS announcer is calling your #1 receiver by the wrong name. Well into the 3rd quarter, the announcer, who shall remain nameless because I don't feel he's worth a Google search at the moment, was still calling Jeremy Kerley Jeremy Cleary, over and over again, despite the stellar season Kerley put together last year (with Mark Sanchez at the helm, nonetheless) and more recently, against the Patriots last week. Sure, the Jets need more weapons on offense, but you've got to meet them half way here.