New York Jets corner back Darrelle Revis (24) runs off the field after a game against the Buffalo Bills at MetLife Stadium. (Brad Penner)
New York Jets corner back Darrelle Revis (24) runs off the field after a game against the Buffalo Bills at MetLife Stadium. (Brad Penner)

In this week's BGA, I analyze Week 17 performances by Ryan Fitzpatrick, Bilal Powell, Quincy Enunwa, Darrelle Revis and Muhammad Wilkerson among others...


Quarterbacks

Bent: Like a pebble in your shoe that you can't get rid of, Ryan Fitzpatrick returned to the starting line-up for his final appearance as a Jet. He ends his Jets career on a positive note, with 210 yards, two touchdown passes and a quarterback rating of 109.0.

In many ways, it was the quintessential good Fitzpatrick performance insofar as he put up numbers and had good success, but only achieved this through taking risks. On another day, three or four of his passes could have been intercepted. When your quarterback's success depends so greatly on the playmaking abilities or otherwise of the opposing secondary, that's not really a recipe for sustainable success.

Despite getting lucky a few times, Fitzpatrick's made some good throws, including two accurate passes in the red zone for touchdowns. He has his moments. Not many of them, but he does have them.

He missed a lot of throws though, including one where it looked like he easily could have run for a first down to keep the drive alive.

I must applaud the Jets for making a plan and actually sticking to it for once. They decided when they drafted him that Christian Hackenberg wouldn't play as a rookie and they didn't deviate from that. I don't even care if it's the right decision. It's the principle of the thing. If this organization could adopt a more single-minded approach towards some of their other intentions, that will be a net positive in the long run.

It's unclear whether Hackenberg would have seen an opportunity if he'd shown better progress on the practice field or if that was irrelevant and they were resolutely determined to stick to the existing timetable. Whether the approach will be successful remains to be seen and is something we will get into more during the offseason.

Running Backs 

Bent: Bilal Powell had another terrific performance, with 122 rushing yards and three catches including a short touchdown. The Jets really seemed to screw up their running back situation by overusing Matt Forté early in the year and then only giving Powell a bigger workload once Forté was injured so there was nobody established to platoon him with.   They make it so difficult sometimes.

It could have been a much bigger game for Powell, though. He gained 25 yards on the first play of the second half, giving him 98 on 12 carries at that time, along with three catches for 15 yards and a score. However, he carried just 10 times for 24 yards over the remainder of the second half. In the end, he was only 92 yards away from being the Jets' leading rusher, but he ends up with a team-high 1,110 yards from scrimmage.

Brandon Wilds saw some action off the bench again. Wilds got off to a rough start when he fumbled the hand-off on his first play but contributed 29 yards on six touches including a 12-yard gain on a dump-off and a five-yard run that saw him push the pile. He appeared to be responsible for the only sack surrendered by the Jets on the day, though, as he went to the wrong side in pass protection. Of course, that might be on the quarterback or center for setting the protection incorrectly, though.

Fellow rookie Brandon Burks made his NFL debut and was given two carries after the Jets began a fourth quarter drive on the Bills' three-yard line. After gaining a yard on his first carry, he was blown up in the backfield for a big loss and the Jets ended up having to settle for a field goal. Both Wilds and Burks will be long-shots to make the rotation next year, but it can't hurt to have some young bodies to compete for time.

Khiry Robinson is also under contract for next season, but after suffering a broken leg for the third time in just over a year, it seems unlikely he'll be a factor next year.

Receivers

Bent: Brandon Marshall was announced as inactive before the game, which provided the remaining crop of pass catchers with an interesting test. If they could still be able to produce without Marshall in the game, that would bode well for the future with Marshall potentially departing after the season.

Each of the young receivers had some good moments and contributed to one of Fitzpatrick's better games of the year. It wasn't a perfect display from a group that has contributed to the team leading the NFL in dropped passes this year, but they made some tough catches and extended a few drives by getting to the marker after the catch.

Quincy Enunwa led the way with 81 yards on five catches. These included a 51-yard gain on a long bomb which perhaps could have been a touchdown if not slightly underthrown. He also had two plays where he caught a short pass and turned it into a first down; once by hurdling the defender and the other by spinning away from a tackler and stumbling backwards to the line to gain. He must get out of the habit of holding the ball in one hand as he tries to break tackles though.

Enunwa finished up the year with a team-leading 857 yards and four touchdowns on 58 catches as he was clearly the most improved player on the roster. He ended up tied with Powell, just one catch behind Marshall for the team lead.

Robby Anderson bounced back quite well from being shut out last week, catching four passes for 43 yards. However, he also false started and should really have been flagged twice for pushing off. It's good to see the slender Anderson being more physical, but he needs to be careful that this doesn't become a habit. He proved on a nice back shoulder throw that he can create separation without doing that.

Both Anderson and Enunwa have shown that they could potentially be productive enough to be thousand yard receivers if Marshall and/or Eric Decker don't return in 2017. However, they both need to work on their consistency and focus as each had a really bad drop yesterday as well.

Charone Peake has made contributions here and there throughout the season. His two catches included a tough first down after which held on despite being flipped over onto his head. He also contributed a good downfield block. Peake is another player who could make strides next year.

The other rookie, Jalin Marshall, made his return to the line-up and caught his second touchdown of the season. He also had a nice low grab for a first down. I'd eventually like to see the Jets experiment with Marshall in a more multi-faceted role, including some snaps in the backfield. Consider Percy Harvin as the blueprint.

Finally, Devin Smith saw more action this week, but wasn't targeted. He ends up the year with just one catch. He'll get a fresh start next offseason, but - like Dee Milliner before him - it doesn't seem like the status of being a high draft pick has compelled the team to place any kind of priority on developing him into a contributor.

NFL Network insider Ian Rapoport reported yesterday that the Jets' next offensive coordinator will be someone who values the tight end position, but that seems unfair on Chan Gailey who got good production out of Scott Chandler in the past and probably only neglected the position with the Jets because of a lack of talent. Maybe it's the front office who need to value that position.

Eric Tomlinson has been a nice pick-up though, albeit not one who contributes as a pass catcher. He has been impressive in the running game since his midseason arrival. While he hasn't been flawless, he's generally had more positive contributions that negatives and that's while the team has actively tried to run behind him more than they ever did with the likes of Kellen Davis or Jeff Cumberland. That has been a boost to a running game which you would have expected to go downhill due to all the losses on the offensive line. 

By contrast, Brandon Bostick continues to be let down by his inconsistency as a blocker. On one short yardage play in particular, everyone else controlled their blocks at the point of attack but he was driven back into the backfield, bottling up the runner. He made a nifty one-handed grab for a short gain, but that was just his eighth catch of the year, which isn't enough to make up for his inconsistent blocking.  

Offensive Line 

Bent: Other than Fitzpatrick, James Carpenter was the only other opening day starter still standing so, when you consider that Fitzpatrick has been benched a few times, Carpenter was basically out there with the second-string. He therefore deserves extra praise because he had an excellent performance with flawless pass protection and a series of impact blocks in the running game. 

The Jets had a number of runs that "popped" including the first play from scrimmage which went for 23 as three separate combo blocks were executed to perfection. There were also a perfectly-timed trio of pad-popping blocks, one after the other, on another good run. That's the kind of chemistry and cohesion that had eluded the running game for most of the year, but the second unit evidently has benefited from playing and practicing together more than the starters were able to.

Carpenter only had a couple of negatives, although one was similar to the Bostick play mentioned above as he was driven into the backfield on an otherwise well-blocked short yardage play. The Jets' short yardage running was their biggest weakness on the day, as they struggled in the red zone and failed on two 4th-and-short runs. Brandon Shell had a bad missed block on one of those, which also saw Ben Ijalana stood up at the line.

Shell held his own again and looks likely to get a long look at a possible starting role for next year. He was half-beaten three times in pass protection but avoided giving up any clean pressure by being strong enough to push outside rushes upfield at the last moment on each occasion. In the running game, he had some bad missed blocks, but he did have some good driving blocks and the team certainly had plenty of success running over the right side.

Dakota Dozier was a big part of that success in the first half but he regressed into a scruffy-looking second half display. Early on, he made some excellent blocks on the move, but he struggled to hold up at the point of attack and against bull rushes in the second half. He was also called for a holding penalty, which -as the announcers noted - seemed unnecessary.

Ijalana actually settled down over the last month and had a pretty consistent performance down the stretch. He didn't make as many contributions in the running game, but only got beaten a few times in pass protection, giving up one quarterback hit.

Wesley Johnson also held his own once again at center. He allowed some pressure, including a couple of hits up the middle and twice let his man shed his block to stuff a run, but otherwise made some good contributions in the running game and looks certain to be starting somewhere next year based on his performance this year. It remains to be seen if that will be with the Jets.

Finally, Brent Qvale and Craig Watts saw action as extra linemen. Qvale has somewhat established himself as a versatile reserve type, but Watts hasn't had much of a chance to impress yet.

Defensive Line

Bent: Notable from this week's game was the performance of Muhammad Wilkerson, who had easily his most disruptive game of the year. Constantly double-teamed throughout, Wilkerson was holding his ground and even getting penetration in a return to the kind of disruptiveness he'd provided on a consistent basis over the previous four seasons. 

Wilkerson had a sack, a tackle for loss, a goal-line stuff and plenty of penetration into the backfield in the running game and when pass rushing.    While this still falls short of what he's capable of, as he was still handled at the point of attack a few times, it was really good to see him posing a big problem for the opposition again. And for anyone questioning his effort, it was encouraging to see him hustling to lay a block on Cardale Jones on the fourth quarter interception. I knew there was more to him than money.

The loudest performance of the day came from Sheldon Richardson, who took advantage of Wilkerson being double-teamed to blow up three runs in the backfield, including one which forced a fumble that he was able to recover. He also dropped into coverage to break up a pass. Richardson penetrated the pocket a few times, but his only quarterback hit was negated by offsetting penalties.

That Richardson's most productive performance of the year should come on a day where Wilkerson was back to something near his best is no coincidence. Wilkerson's struggles this year have had a knock-on effect on everyone else. It also underlines what a huge difference it would make if Wilkerson is back to his best next year. Obviously Richardson being a beneficiary of that will depend if he's back but we'll be getting into the various keep-or-dump dilemmas over the next few weeks.

By contrast, Leonard Williams having deservedly been named team MVP earlier in the week, saw his season end with a comparative whimper. Obviously he played his part in holding the Bills to 2.4 yards per carry, but he ended up with just two tackles and one pressure. The exciting thing here is that he's only just started to scratch the surface in terms of his capabilities.

Deon Simon is another young player on the rise and he made some good contributions yesterday, including a goal line stuff and a sack. He was also in on a couple of other run stops and made a good open field tackle on a quarterback scramble after having dropped into coverage. The team didn't seem to lose much with Simon in for the injured Steve McLendon over the last month or so.

Finally, Anthony Johnson was credited with three tackles but overpursued on one play, leading to a big run. He didn't do much to distinguish himself in rotational work after Jarvis Jenkins was released.

Linebackers 

Bent: Rookie Jordan Jenkins finished the year on a high as he made some good plays against the run and generated some good pressure. His performance was highlighted by his sack, forced fumble and fumble recovery.

Recent addition Corey Lemonier also laid a big hit on that play, causing the fumble, although Jenkins got official credit. He was also a handful on a few other pass rushes. It sums up how disappointing the Jets outside linebacker play has been that a guy could come in cold having not been able to keep his job on the Browns and provide an immediate upgrade.

Freddie Bishop made some good plays against the run, including two tackles in the backfield, but he was badly caught on the inside on one outside run and didn't generate any pressure as a pass rusher. Bishop has played over 150 snaps over the last four weeks but had just three pressures and no quarterback hits.

Darron Lee had five tackles and a quarterback hit, but he was blocked out of a couple of plays and there were two short yardage plays where he met the runner in the hole but couldn't prevent the first down. This is probably the first time that his lack of size was a major factor in his performance, although once again that perhaps had more to do with him getting there a split second too late to square up to and stop the runner in his tracks.

The one major breakdown Lee had saw him drop into coverage and allow a receiver to drop in behind him all alone. EJ Manuel missed the throw, which should have been an easy touchdown. 

Was it his fault though? He initially dropped with the defender and then passed him off assuming someone was behind him. Buster Skrine had run with his receiver on a post route despite the fact the safety was right there. On the other side of the field, everyone appeared to be in zone coverage. It's always hard to tell - and perhaps even if it was Skrine's fault, Lee should have realized and adjusted accordingly.

David Harris once again led the team in tackles, including one in the backfield. He gave up a first down on a short pass and was caught inside on one run though.

Finally, Bruce Carter hasn't played much this season, but he got a chance at some playing time yesterday and responded well. He had a run stuff, a pass break-up and a pressure.

Defensive Backs

Bent: Darrelle Revis had a memorable day in what could have been his last game as a Jet. Having been selected as a team captain, Revis almost wrapped up his day with a touchdown after intercepting his first pass in over a year and returning it all the way back to the three-yard line.

Revis gave up a couple of first downs, including a long one that saw him pushed to the ground by the receiver running deep. He was also temporarily knocked out of the game on a play where he missed a tackle - not exactly a glowing recommendation for his potential conversion to safety. 

Naming him a captain was unexpected and a bit weird in light of his recent comments. Was this a nod to Revis' past, an act of "class" designed to give Revis exactly what he asked for before unceremoniously dumping him? Of course Revis believes the Jets should still pay him a top level salary based on past performance, even while conceding he's not the man he once was. I don't know where he gets his delusions.

Ultimately, this will be one of the biggest decisions of the offseason and I'm not convinced they've made up their minds yet. It's hard to imagine a satisfactory conclusion to the Revis/Jets saga. The Jets just never should have sent him away. That's where they lost him.

Calvin Pryor was responsible for the Revis interception, stepping in front of a defender to deflect the ball into the air. Pryor had an active performance as he was also in on a couple of stops near the line of scrimmage, but his roughing the passer penalty gave the Bills a second bite on fourth down.

Rontez Miles had a quieter day, although he made a touchdown saving tackle on the big pass play in the fourth quarter. He was also in good position on an incompletion. 

Darryl Roberts made an unexpected return to the main rotation this week and he broke up a couple of passes, although he was somewhat fortunate on one of those because he didn't know too much about it having initially been beaten. Roberts was beaten twice for first downs and one other time on a pass that was dropped.

Skrine also broke up a couple of passes and was in good position on a couple of other plays. He was beaten for one first down. As noted earlier, Skrine may have been responsible for a coverage breakdown that almost led to a touchdown. Over the course of the season I've noticed that he's been potentially at fault in several such plays, although he's arguably been one of the most consistent defensive backs in coverage. Moreso than anyone else, I wonder how a change of secondary coach would affect him.

After some recent encouraging signs, rookie cornerback Juston Burris did not play on defense and neither did Dexter McDougle, who ended up playing just six snaps all year. Doug Middleton and Marcus Williams played just three snaps between them with Williams giving up a first down in coverage.

Special teams

Bent: The low-key highlight of the game on special teams was a meaningless fourth quarter punt which actually ended up being a decent return for the Bills. On the play, Peake overpursued and Carter and Bostick lost contain. However, what you perhaps didn't notice was Harris busting his rear end to be the next man down and forcing the return man to redirect at the point of the catch. 

A tenth-year veteran probably shouldn't even be playing special teams at this stage of his career, but Harris wasn't going through the motions, even on such a meaningless play in such a meaningless game. What a fantastic example to set to his young teammates. If this proves to be Harris' last game as a Jet then I'll remember him as someone who gave his all to the last. However, on a team that desperately craves leadership, that's the kind of moment that should make everyone think twice about even considering cutting him loose.

Nick Folk had a solid finish to his year (and potentially his Jets career?) by nailing three field goals. One of his kick-offs was a squib kick that led to a long return due to overpursuit from Johnson and Marcus Williams, but he made up for it with his 70-yard onside kick that was recovered for a hilarious touchdown by Middleton. 

One day after Alabama scored their 15th non-offensive touchdown of the season, Middleton's score represented the first non-offensive touchdown for a Jets players since Antonio Allen's blocked punt return in December 2013. After a season where the Jets have often gifted their opponents big plays with dumb mistakes, it seemed oddly fitting that this should be the last touchdown they scored all season. Could you imagine that happening in an actual meaningful game?

Also, in kick coverage, McDougle had a couple of tackles. Unfortunately one of them was on Jalin Marshall, who had a couple of nice runbacks as he returned to that role with Nick Marshall out. Ronald Martin and Josh Martin also both made good plays to slow up the return man for McDougle and Lee to make the stop. Bryson Keeton added a special teams tackle in his first NFL game.

Finally, rookie punter Lac Edwards had a couple of good punts in this game, but also put one into the end zone for a touchback from near midfield. He's been a big disappointment all year. You would expect to have the position sorted for the foreseeable future after spending a draft pick, but he'll struggle to beat out any competition next year unless he makes significant improvements.

 

Final thoughts

Bent: The Jets completely outplayed the Bills in yesterday's game and the 30-10 score didn't even flatter them because they should have scored more having been in the red zone several times. I'd like to be able to suggest that maybe the Jets aren't such a bad team after all. However, the Bills had nothing to play for as well as the upheaval caused by the coaching change and the downgrade produced by putting Manuel in for Tyrod Taylor cannot be ignored.

It's true that when the pressure is lifted, players can perform well at the end of the season, with the most obvious recent example being Geno Smith and his "perfect game" a few years ago. The Jets displayed defensive playmaking ability to create three turnovers, got some really fortunate bounces and had a couple of individual performances which defied recent history. After a performance like this, you're left wondering where that was all season. 

After a 10-6 campaign last year, optimism was high that the Jets could go from strength to strength in 2016 despite what looked like a more difficult schedule, but I knew the Jets were going to struggle this season. Somehow, I've always known.

Let's not beat around the bush. 2016 was a terrible year, filled with far too many devastating losses to take. Whether the loss that affected you worst was an artistic pioneer, an intergalactic treasure or something more personal and closer to home, we all suffered in 2016 and we only got through it by supporting one another.

There's good news, though. Mercifully, it's all over now. Let's put 2016 in the rear-view mirror. We can finally start to look ahead, fight back and rebuild. This might be a low point, but the only way is up from here. 

Draft picks, cap-clearing moves, coaching changes and opportunities for young players to step up and make a name for themselves are on the way. At last, we can start to have the one thing that eluded us throughout the year:

Hope…

Tags: BGA

Aug 19, 2017; Glendale, AZ, USA; Chicago Bears quarterback Mark Sanchez (6) warms up prior to the game against the Arizona Cardinals at University of Phoenix Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports (Joe Camporeale)
Aug 19, 2017; Glendale, AZ, USA; Chicago Bears quarterback Mark Sanchez (6) warms up prior to the game against the Arizona Cardinals at University of Phoenix Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports (Joe Camporeale)

Mark Sanchez is back in the NFL. 

The former Jets quarterback was signed by the Washington Redskins on Monday to serve as Colt McCoy's backup, per Field Yates of ESPN. 

The Redskins were in need of another quarterback after Alex Smith suffered a season-ending injury, breaking his tibia and fibia, which required immediate surgery, during Sunday's 23-21 loss to the Texans. 

Tags: Washington Redskins
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Oct 28, 2018; Chicago, IL, USA; New York Jets quarterback Sam Darnold (14) jogs off the field after the second half against the Chicago Bears at Soldier Field. Mandatory Credit: Patrick Gorski-USA TODAY Sports (Patrick Gorski)
Oct 28, 2018; Chicago, IL, USA; New York Jets quarterback Sam Darnold (14) jogs off the field after the second half against the Chicago Bears at Soldier Field. Mandatory Credit: Patrick Gorski-USA TODAY Sports (Patrick Gorski)

Sam Darnold still is not cleared to practice. 

The Jets returned from their bye week on Monday but their rookie quarterback remained sidelined with a strained right foot. 

Darnold did not play in the Jets' Week 10 loss to the Bills but was seen after the game without his walking boot. 

Tags: Sam Darnold
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Oct 28, 2018; Chicago, IL, USA; New York Jets outside linebacker Brandon Copeland (51) takes a knee moments before the game against the Chicago Bears at Soldier Field. Mandatory Credit: Quinn Harris-USA TODAY Sports (Quinn Harris)
Oct 28, 2018; Chicago, IL, USA; New York Jets outside linebacker Brandon Copeland (51) takes a knee moments before the game against the Chicago Bears at Soldier Field. Mandatory Credit: Quinn Harris-USA TODAY Sports (Quinn Harris)

Jets linebacker Brandon Copeland is going back to school, just not as a student. 

The 27-year-old plans to teach a financial literacy course at his alma mater, the University of Pennsylvania, during the spring semester, according to the New York Post.

The class Copeland will teach is called "Inequity and Empowerment: Urban Financial Literacy" and he will teach it alongside Brian Peterson, who has a doctorate in education. 

Tags: Brandon Copeland
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Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive

The Jets will head into the offseason with more salary cap space than almost every other team in the NFL. They've vowed to be aggressive. They have an obvious need for offensive play-makers.

And they have absolutely no excuse to do whatever it takes to make sure they land free agent running back Le'Veon Bell.

Tags: Bilal Powell, Quincy Enunwa, Robby Anderson
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Oct 14, 2018; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets former quarterback Joe Namath Before the National Football League game between the New York Jets and the Indianapolis Colts at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports (Vincent Carchietta)
Oct 14, 2018; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets former quarterback Joe Namath Before the National Football League game between the New York Jets and the Indianapolis Colts at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports (Vincent Carchietta)

It was set to be a good Week 11 matchup between two top teams in the American Football League. But, on this date 50 years ago, a game between the Jets and Raiders would change professional football forever. 

On Nov. 17, 1968, the Jets took a late 32-29 lead over the Raiders with 1:05 left to go in the fourth quarter. The game was being aired on NBC, and after cutting to a commercial following the score, the game never came back on. 

Instead, the movie "Heidi" ran at its 7 o'clock start time despite the game not being over. And, of course, the game ended in dramatic fashion with the Raiders scoring two touchdowns in the final nine seconds to win 43-32.

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Is there a playoff team in NY? 00:00:47
SNY takes on the question... Could you make an NFL playoff team by combining players from the Jets and Giants in 2018?

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive

This is a terrible time for New York football, with the Giants and Jets sitting on what feels like rock bottom. They are a combined 5-14 this season, and the playoffs are already out of reach. And they are a combined 13-38 (.254) since the beginning of 2018.

But while there may not be hope at the moment for either team, there is still some talent on their two rosters. If they could only somehow combine the two, they might even have the makings of a playoff team.

 

Tags: Dalvin Tomlinson, Darron Lee, Eli Manning, Evan Engram, Jamal Adams, Jordan Jenkins, Landon Collins, Marcus Maye, Nate Solder, Odell Beckham Jr., Olivier Vernon, Saquon Barkley, Sterling Shepard, Steve McLendon, Ralph Vacchiano
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2018 Report Cards for the Jets 00:03:48
Halfway through the season, Bart Scott and Ray Lucas give their midseason grades for the Jets. Some grades are better than others.

As the Jets enter their bye week, Ray Lucas and Bart Scott break down their midseason report cards for New York this season. And they aren't pretty...

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Nov 11, 2018; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets head coach Todd Bowles leaves the field after a game against the Buffalo Bills at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Nov 11, 2018; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets head coach Todd Bowles leaves the field after a game against the Buffalo Bills at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

On the latest episode of The Jet Stream podcast, Jonas Schwartz and Willie Colon face the reality that Jonas' fear of a loss to the Bills came true in the worst possible way. The guys look at the potentially very short future of the tenure of Todd Bowles, wonder if Mike Maccagnan deserves the blame as well, and hand out some hardware - that's right - the bye week means a mid-season award show on The Jet Stream!

Subscribe to the show here: https://on.sny.tv/2Od2Qzt

 

CLICK BELOW TO LISTEN

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Le'Veon Bell (Charles LeClaire/USA TODAY Sports)
Le'Veon Bell (Charles LeClaire/USA TODAY Sports)

An online sportsbook already pegs the Jets as favorites to land Steelers running back Le'Veon Bell in free agency. And several other NFL sources reportedly believe he's headed to the Meadowlands, too.

One Steelers source told Bleacher Report's Mike Freeman, "I think it's a foregone conclusion" that Bell dons green and white next season, and several other people around the league believe the same.

Of the 10 NFL personnel sources Freeman spoke to, six believe Bell will be a Jet next season after he sit out the 2018 season with Pittsburgh.

Tags: Bilal Powell, Elijah McGuire, Pittsburgh Steelers
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Sam Darnold sits down with SNY 00:01:07
Sam Darnold sits down with Jeane Coakley to chat rookie life in New York, on Jets Nation: Midseason Report, Thursday at 6:30p on SNY.

Sam Darnold sits down with SNY's Jeane Coakley to chat rookie life in New York, including watching NBA games courtside with Josh McCown.

"I would not have been able to play professional basketball," the Jets quarterback said. "Those guys are freak athletes that can also shoot the ball and can handle it, so it's pretty incredible to watch them play up close."

See the full interview on "Jets Nation: Midseason Report," Thursday at 6:30 p.m. on SNY.

Tags: Sam Darnold
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Le'Veon Bell refused to report to the Steelers by 4 p.m. on Tuesday and is officially ineligible to play the 2018 season.

This could be good news for the Jets. 

The 26-year-old running back will become an unrestricted free agent this offseason and the Jets will likely be in the market to upgrade their backfield. 

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Dec 10, 2017; Denver, CO, USA; New York Jets strong safety Jamal Adams (33) before the game against the Denver Broncos at Sports Authority Field at Mile High. Mandatory Credit: Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports (Isaiah J. Downing)
Dec 10, 2017; Denver, CO, USA; New York Jets strong safety Jamal Adams (33) before the game against the Denver Broncos at Sports Authority Field at Mile High. Mandatory Credit: Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports (Isaiah J. Downing)

Jamal Adams told Bleacher Report during the offseason that the 2017 Jets lacked energy in the locker room and seemed as if "everybody wanted to do the bare minimum."

Now halfway into the 2018 season, the safety says it's same old, same old.

"Honestly, I can sit here and sugarcoat everything, but things have not changed," Adams said Tuesday on WFAN's "Carlin, Maggie and Bart" show. "Obviously we're still losing and I'm not saying that we have guys like that in the locker room. But at the same time it's not changing, it hasn't changed and we've been losing. At the end of the day we're going to get it fixed, and the sun will shine."

Tags: Jamal Adams
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September 16, 2018; Santa Clara, CA, USA; Detroit Lions linebacker Marquis Flowers (59) before the game against the San Francisco 49ers at Levi's Stadium. The 49ers defeated the Lions 30-27. Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports (Kyle Terada)
September 16, 2018; Santa Clara, CA, USA; Detroit Lions linebacker Marquis Flowers (59) before the game against the San Francisco 49ers at Levi's Stadium. The 49ers defeated the Lions 30-27. Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports (Kyle Terada)

The Jets are bringing in former Lions OLB Marquis Flowers for a workout on Tuesday, according to Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News.

New York could use all the help it can get on defense -- with Sunday's 41-10 loss to the Bills serving as the latest bit of evidence.

Flowers, who was taken by the Bengals in the sixth round in the 2014 NFL Draft, has played in five games with the Lions this season, including their season-opening loss to the Jets on Sept. 10. He tallied one solo tackle and one assist for Detroit before the team cut him on Oct. 10.

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Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive: Todd Bowles is on the hot seat with the Jets. Mike Maccagnan is not.

That may not seem fair, considering they came to New York together in 2015 and have had equal hands in this Jets mess ever since, but that's the way it appears to be, according to several sources familiar with the Jets' thinking. Bowles seems to be on the fast track to being fired after the season while Maccagnan's job doesn't appear to be in danger at all.

And the reason is simple: Maccagnan's job is to build for the long term, and his long-stated plan has been to compete for a playoff berth in 2019. All his moves -- including moving up in the draft to land the Jets their franchise quarterback -- have been with that goal in mind. And part of that plan was to capitalize on the $100 million-plus in salary cap space he created for them to use next offseason.

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May 4, 2018; Florham Park, NJ, USA; New York Jets head coach Todd Bowles answers questions from media during rookie mini camp at Atlantic Health Training Center. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports (Noah K. Murray)
May 4, 2018; Florham Park, NJ, USA; New York Jets head coach Todd Bowles answers questions from media during rookie mini camp at Atlantic Health Training Center. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports (Noah K. Murray)

A day after the Jets were crushed by the Bills, head coach Todd Bowles was as even keeled as usual during his roughly eight-minute conversation with reporters on Monday.

Bowles, whose job status is tenuous, said he has not yet spoken with Jets owner Christopher Johnson about his future.

Johnson declined comment on Bowles after Sunday's game.

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Rex Ryan on 'Get Up' (via @raymanjr, ESPN)
Rex Ryan on 'Get Up' (via @raymanjr, ESPN)

Rex Ryan is not pulling any punches when it comes to his former team. 

A day after the Jets' 41-10 loss at home to the Matt Barkley-led Bills, the former Gang Green head coach appeared on ESPN's 'Get Up' and called it "one of the most humiliating defeats' in team history. And that is coming from the man who coached the Buttfumble game. 

Click below to watch...

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Nov 11, 2018; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets head coach Todd Bowles leaves the field after a game against the Buffalo Bills at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Nov 11, 2018; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets head coach Todd Bowles leaves the field after a game against the Buffalo Bills at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

The Jets were humiliated by the Bills on Sunday, with calls coming after for the team to fire head coach Todd Bowles. 

Click below to see how the back pages in New York reacted...

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New York Jets head coach Todd Bowles coaches against the Buffalo Bills during the fourth quarter at MetLife Stadium. (Brad Penner/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Jets head coach Todd Bowles coaches against the Buffalo Bills during the fourth quarter at MetLife Stadium. (Brad Penner/USA TODAY Sports)

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- A year ago, Jets owner Christopher Johnson made it clear he won't judge Todd Bowles on wins and losses alone. He said his evaluation would be about "progression" and whether or not he saw it would "be obvious to all."

It certainly was obvious on Sunday afternoon when the Buffalo Bills humiliated Bowles' Jets 41-10. New York looked unprepared, disinterested and incredibly incompetent.

And if Johnson wasn't considering firing Bowles before that, he certainly has to be now.

Tags: Jamal Adams, Morris Claiborne, Sam Darnold, Ralph Vacchiano
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Firing Bowles best for Jets? 00:01:26
On Jets Post-Game Live, Bart Scott and Willie Colon discuss if firing Todd Bowles would be beneficial for the Jets or create more problems.

Jets owner Christopher Johnson declined comment on the job status of head coach Todd Bowles after Sunday's humiliation at the hands of the Bills.

And shortly after, Bowles spoke about the 41-10 loss that sealed the Jets' fate this season and may have sealed his fate as someone who's on the way out the door. 

"We stunk it up as coaches. We stunk it up as players," Bowles said. "Everybody played bad. Everybody coached bad."

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SNY's Week 10 Jets Report Card 00:02:04
Ray Lucas, Willie Colon, and Bart Scott hand out their report cards after the Jets lost to the Bills on Sunday, 41-10.

The Jets crew hands out grades after New York's humiliating 41-10 loss to the Buffalo Bills on Sunday.

Tags: Buffalo Bills
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New York Jets head coach Todd Bowles looks on before his game against the Indianapolis Colts at MetLife Stadium. (Vincent Carchietta/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Jets head coach Todd Bowles looks on before his game against the Indianapolis Colts at MetLife Stadium. (Vincent Carchietta/USA TODAY Sports)

Jets safety Jamal Adams and cornerback Buster Skrine were among the players who defended head coach Todd Bowles after Sunday's 41-10 loss to the Buffalo Bills.

"T-Bowles is not the problem," Adams told reporters. "I'm gonna ride with T-Bowles until the end. It doesn't matter. I don't care what the fans say. It's T-Bowles. I'm gonna support my coach."

Sunday's loss, an embarrassment in which the Jets were outgained 451-199, committed two turnovers and trailed 31-3 at halftime, was New York's fourth straight loss and dropped the Jets to 3-7 heading into their bye week. 

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New York Jets quarterback Josh McCown reacts during the fourth quarter against the Buffalo Bills at MetLife Stadium. (Brad Penner/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Jets quarterback Josh McCown reacts during the fourth quarter against the Buffalo Bills at MetLife Stadium. (Brad Penner/USA TODAY Sports)

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The Jets head to the bye week with a 3-7 record after a humiliating 41-10 loss to the Bills. Let's review three of the best and worst performances from Sunday's game.

Losers

QB Josh McCown

In his first start since last December, McCown was disappointingly erratic. He went just 17-for-34 with two interceptions, as he had five passes batted down at the line of scrimmage. Most of his 134 yards came in garbage time, as he averaged just four yards per attempt. Moreover, the majority of those yards came after the catch as the Jets ran an uninspiring horizontal passing offense.

Tags: Buffalo Bills, Buster Skrine, Elijah McGuire, Jamal Adams, Jordan Jenkins, Josh McCown, Sam Darnold
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Jets unhappy after Bills loss 00:00:55
Todd Bowles, Jamal Adams and other Jets players voice their disappointment after their blowout loss to the Buffalo Bill

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. - A week ago the Jets threw away their playoff hopes with a loss in Miami, but at least they showed some fight in that game.

This week, against the horrible Buffalo Bills, the Jets didn't show up at all.

In what has to be one of the worst losses in a franchise history filled with terrible losses, the Jets absolutely embarrassed themselves in their 41-10 loss to the Bills on Sunday. They were down 31-0 in the first half to a team that had totaled 20 points in its last three games. They were outgained 186 yards to 1 - one! - in the first quarter and 313-68 by halftime.

Tags: Elijah McGuire, Jordan Leggett, Josh McCown, Sam Darnold, Ralph Vacchiano
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May 4, 2018; Florham Park, NJ, USA; New York Jets head coach Todd Bowles answers questions from media during rookie mini camp at Atlantic Health Training Center. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports (Noah K. Murray)
May 4, 2018; Florham Park, NJ, USA; New York Jets head coach Todd Bowles answers questions from media during rookie mini camp at Atlantic Health Training Center. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports (Noah K. Murray)

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive

If these truly are the final games of the Todd Bowles era, the Jets have an enormous, franchise-defining decision to make. If they expect to be a contender in 2019, if they expect Sam Darnold to be their long-awaited franchise savior, the next coach they hire absolutely can't miss.

So whom could they hire to replace Bowles? Here's a look at 12 candidates that figure to be on their list:

Tags: Sam Darnold, Ralph Vacchiano
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Aug 24, 2018; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets quarterbacks Sam Darnold (14) and Josh McCown (15) watch second half of play against the New York Giants at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports (Noah K. Murray)
Aug 24, 2018; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets quarterbacks Sam Darnold (14) and Josh McCown (15) watch second half of play against the New York Giants at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports (Noah K. Murray)

Jets QB Sam Darnold (foot strain) will be inactive against the Bills on Sunday afternoon.

Darnold's status had been in doubt all week, and it was revealed Thursday that Josh McCown would get the start. However, head coach Todd Bowles had not ruled Darnold out as the potential backup.

However, the Jets' hand was tipped a bit on Saturday when SNY's Ralph Vacchiano confirmed that QB Davis Webb was going to be activated from the practice squad in advance of Sunday's game...

Tags: Robby Anderson, Sam Darnold, Danny Abriano
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Jets QB Josh McCown (Bill Streicher/USA TODAY Sports)
Jets QB Josh McCown (Bill Streicher/USA TODAY Sports)

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive

THE GAME 

The Jets (3-6) vs. Buffalo Bills (2-7) at the Meadowlands in East Rutherford, New Jersey, on Sunday, Nov. 11, at 1 p.m. ET.

THE WEATHER

It'll be a chilly day, with temperatures topping out in the mid-40s and moderate winds. It should be sunny, though.

WHAT IT MEANS

The Jets pretty much took any real meaning out of this game by losing to the Dolphins a week ago. A win only gets them back to 4-6 heading into their bye week, and they'd still need a miracle against a tough schedule after Thanksgiving to even sniff a shot at the playoffs. So all a win does is make them feel a little happier heading into their week off. But a loss? Whoa, would that turn things in a bad way against the Jets. This is an awful Bills team that even the Jets should crush, especially with veteran Josh McCown taking over at quarterback for a suddenly shaky Sam Darnold. If they lose this game, they could be headed to a season worse than last year, and there may be nothing that could save Todd Bowles' job.

Tags: Buffalo Bills, Josh McCown, Sam Darnold, Ralph Vacchiano
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Oct 28, 2018; Chicago, IL, USA; New York Jets quarterback Sam Darnold (14) jogs off the field after the second half against the Chicago Bears at Soldier Field. Mandatory Credit: Patrick Gorski-USA TODAY Sports (Patrick Gorski)
Oct 28, 2018; Chicago, IL, USA; New York Jets quarterback Sam Darnold (14) jogs off the field after the second half against the Chicago Bears at Soldier Field. Mandatory Credit: Patrick Gorski-USA TODAY Sports (Patrick Gorski)

On the latest episode of The Jet Stream podcast, Jonas Schwartz is joined by NFL Network Analyst Brian Baldinger and ESPN's Rich Cimini to discuss the injury to Sam Darnold, who watched practice in a walking boot on Tuesday. They break down the strained foot of the rookie quarterback, the progress of his on-field development, and the state of the Jets moving forward as the season starts to splinter for Todd Bowles.

Subscribe to the show here: https://on.sny.tv/2Od2Qzt

CLICK BELOW TO LISTEN

Tags: Sam Darnold
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Aug 17, 2018; Detroit, MI, USA; New York Giants quarterback Davis Webb (5) looks for an open man during the first quarter against the Detroit Lions at Ford Field. Mandatory Credit: Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports (Raj Mehta)
Aug 17, 2018; Detroit, MI, USA; New York Giants quarterback Davis Webb (5) looks for an open man during the first quarter against the Detroit Lions at Ford Field. Mandatory Credit: Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports (Raj Mehta)

Jets head coach Todd Bowles wouldn't completely rule out rookie QB Sam Darnold against the Bills. But their latest roster move says otherwise.

The Jets will activate QB Davis Webb from the practice squad to the 53-man roster, SNY's Ralph Vacchiano confirmed. And while the Jets haven't officially confirmed it yet, Webb is expected to be the team's backup. 

Darnold was listed as doubtful on the Jets' injury report after being diagnosed with a foot strain earlier this week. Bowles told the media on Thursday that veteran QB Josh McCown will get the start for the Jets, with Darnold not expected to be 100 percent.

Tags: Davis Webb, Josh McCown, Sam Darnold
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Bowles talks McCown 00:00:39
Todd Bowles talks about Josh McCown starting in place of Sam Darnold this Sunday vs the Bills

FLORHAM PARK, N.J. - The Jets had no intentions of sitting Sam Darnold, no matter how much he's struggled over the last few weeks. They were going to let him play through his growing pains, to find his own way out, no matter what it did to their season.

Maybe that's the right way to do it. No doubt most NFL quarterbacks would argue that it is.

But given how lost he's looked on the field for the last three weeks, it couldn't hurt for Darnold to watch a little from the sidelines. So maybe this strained foot he suffered will turn out to be a blessing in disguise.

Tags: Josh McCown, Sam Darnold, Ralph Vacchiano
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Nov 4, 2018; Orchard Park, NY, USA; Buffalo Bills quarterback Matt Barkley (5) on the field before a game against the Chicago Bears at New Era Field. Mandatory Credit: Timothy T. Ludwig-USA TODAY Sports (Timothy T. Ludwig)
Nov 4, 2018; Orchard Park, NY, USA; Buffalo Bills quarterback Matt Barkley (5) on the field before a game against the Chicago Bears at New Era Field. Mandatory Credit: Timothy T. Ludwig-USA TODAY Sports (Timothy T. Ludwig)

The Bills announced QB Matt Barkley will start against the Jets on Sunday.

The 28-year-old former USC product was signed by the Bills on Oct. 30 as insurance and has not played a down in the NFL since 2016.

Tags: Buffalo Bills, Josh Allen
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