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Everyone knows about the Jets’ defense. They’re big, they’re strong, they’re good, and they were embarrassed by Darren McFadden and the Oakland Raiders.
The Jets, who believe they have the most intimidating and best defense in the NFL, were given a dose of their own medicine when they went into Oakland on Sunday. The Raiders punished the Jets’ defense physically on their way to 234 yards on the ground, with 171 coming from McFadden.
There have been three games in this young NFL season and this Jets’ defense looks like a shell of the defenses we saw in 2009 and 2010. This may just be a temporary skid or loss of defensive identity, but if you look at the games so far, they’ve had two bad performances sandwiching a beat down of a journeyman quarterback.
Rex Ryan took blame for the defensive performance, saying that Raiders coach, Hue Jackson, out prepared him, but that was blatantly obvious.
On the first drive, the Raiders came out in a no huddle offense. The Jets’ defense looked like it had never heard of a no huddle, let alone seen one before. Oakland marched right down the field for a five play 76 yard opening drive for a touchdown.
“That’s unacceptable for our defense,” said cornerback Darrelle Revis, alluding to the no-show on the game’s opening drive. “That had us on our heels.”
The other thing that’s not a good sign for the Jets’ defensive line is how Oakland simply pushed them around. They exploited the weaknesses in the Jets’ defense around the perimeter as the Jets’ linebackers aren’t known as the quickest bunch and that, combined with poor tackling, led to a long day for the Jets.
They were also fooled on multiple plays. There was the McFadden 27 yard gain on a broken trick play. Then the next play on an end around missed tackles and poor positioning led to Moore’s 27 yard reverse for a touchdown.
“We didn’t play to our identity,” Revis said. “It’s a shocker for a lot of us.”
Well, the Jets better play to that identity next weekend as they face the Baltimore Ravens and Ray Rice who is another back who can make them look foolish. While this maybe just a temporary lapse, this Jets defensive line needs to turn things around quickly, otherwise a season that started with Super Bowl aspirations is going to end with “We’ll get em next year” aspirations.