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Proud of the Jets

January 25, 2010

For a franchise that hasn’t been to a Superbowl in over 40 years, it is not easy to just say “we’ll get ’em next year.”   Yes, nobody expected Gang Green to be in this position, but these opportunities do not come every season (just ask Dan Marino.) 

Nonetheless, except for a Superbowl victory, I cannot be happier with the Jets and what they accomplished this season.  

I will not go through the game, as most of you watched it yourself.  I will, however, point out five key things that I thought led to the Colts victory:

1. Injuries on defense- The Jets had without question the NFL’s top defense.  What they didn’t have is depth.  Both Bart Scott and David Harris were nursing ankle injuries, and I don’t remember seeing Scott on the field at all yesterday.  Furthermore, both Ellis and Leonhard were playing with a cast on one of their hands, and the results were missed tackles.  The secondary was also beat up with injuries to Strickland and Lowery.  Depth is definitely something that must be addressed in the off-season, and is a reason why the Jets are not a Superbowl team just yet. 

2. Injury to Shonn Greene- Yes, Mark Sanchez was brilliant yesterday and showed he is tough as nails.  But there is no denying the heart and soul of the Jet offense over the past 4-5 weeks has been Shonn Greene.  Thomas Jones has been nursing a leg injury for the past month, and when Greene went down the entire offense sputtered. 

3. Settling for field goals- After Calvin Pace stripped Addai and the Jets got the ball on the Colts 30 yard line, Shotty was way too conservative in just playing for a field goal.  You beat Peyton Manning with touchdowns, not field goals. 

4. Jay Feeley’s missed field goals- The first miss hurt, but the back-breaker was the 52 yard miss early in the third quarter.  I did not like the call going for three there, for the simple fact that the reward of three points was not worth the risk of putting the Colts on the 42 yard line with a miss.  

5. Peyton Manning- This guy is unbelievable.  Clearly he was the best player on the field yesterday and he made the Colts the better team.

Moving forward, Gang Green should be a top NFL team for the next 8-10 years.  They have a franchise quarterback in Sanchez, and with Rex Ryan you know the defense will always be good.  Mike Tannenbaum will make the necessary moves to improve this team, as the defense desperately needs a 3-4 pass rusher and another cornerback opposite on Revis. 

Nobody has been harder on Braylon Edwards than me, but I would bring him back.  Yes, he drops the ball on occasion, but the value he adds in blocking and opening up the field for the run game is irreplaceable.  Moreover, you  saw yesterday that he still has big-play capability. 

I bow out of the 2009 NFL season with a congratulations to the Colts, and Peyton Manning who shut up any doubters on whether he is a big game quarterback. 

In a season that felt like “Same Old Jets” at many times, Rex Ryan, Sanchez and these Jets proved they are anything but. The magic carpet ride came to an end thanks to a superior Colts team, but nobody can take anything away from what the Jets accomplished. 

And as a life-long Jet fan who has experienced nothing but disappointment, congrats to the Jets for making me proud to wear the green and white once again.

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