Welcome to Bent's Game Analysis, which is based on watching and re-watching TV footage. As such, it is not always possible to accurately determine everything that was going on. However, every effort has been made to ensure that the information below is as complete and correct as possible.

We're breaking down yesterday's win over the Falcons. Part one is here. In part two, we're focusing on the defense and special teams.

Join me after the jump as I attempt to cover every angle.

I'd imagine most people were pleased with the defensive performance this week, but the Jets actually gave up 40 more yards than they did in the loss to the Titans last week. They also surrendered 26 first downs and allowed Matt Ryan to complete 80% of his passes, but most disappointingly of all, they seemed to lose the ability to tackle after half time, with 14 of their 16 missed tackles occurring after the interval. Fatigue played a noticeable role, perhaps contributing to those missed tackles in the second half.

The Falcons entered the game struggling in the red zone, but ended up scoring four touchdowns on five trips with the only failure coming when the clock ran out on them even though they had first and goal at the one. Maybe the red zone defense is something that the Jets need to shore up somewhat too.

However, for all their struggles stopping some of the Falcons' high-powered weapons, the Jets won matchups up front and made life difficult for the Falcons while also, at last, forcing a game-changing turnover and underlining their playmaking potential by almost forcing several others. While they gave up 363 yards, that was actually 35.5 yards below the Falcons' average entering the game.

Interior Line

In the trenches the Jets had their way with the Falcons for the most part. Unlike most of the previous games so far this season, several different Jets saw themselves double teamed, but that strategy didn't pay off for Atlanta as everyone else dominated when single-blocked.

Sheldon Richardson had a particularly interesting game, as he actually got off to a really bad start. He was driven off the line by a couple of double teams early on and then blocked out of a play where the Falcons converted in a short yardage situation. However, he was outstanding in the second quarter, exploding up the middle for a sack, blowing up a run with a tackle in the backfield and making the tackle on the Jets' goal line stand to end the half. In the second half, he went from strength to strength, swatting a pass, bullrushing Justin Blalock into Matt Ryan's lap and shedding a block to stuff another run. He did miss a couple of tackles though, although one was negated by a penalty.

Damon Harrison had to deal with a few double teams in this one, which of course frees up those around him to make plays. I marvel at his efforts to keep fighting to get off the block, which usually ended with him leveraging his way back into the path of the runner and limiting the yardage surrendered. There were two plays where he was driven off the line by a double team, but when single-blocked he made a positive impact as ever, including one play where he burst into the backfield to trip the runner for a loss. Harrison also got some good push as a pass rusher, getting in Ryan's face twice.

Behind Harrison, Kenrick Ellis continues to be extremely productive despite not playing much. In just 10 snaps, he blew up a run in the backfield, got crucial penetration on the Jets' stop at the goal line, stood up his man on another short yardage play and, perhaps most impressively of all, collapsed the pocket by bullrushing against a double team on third and one. Harrison is currently behind just Ndamakong Suh, Jurrell Casey and Gerald McCoy in PFF's NT/DT rankings, but Ellis is number two on a per play basis, behind just Jonathan Hankins of the Giants. If you combine Ellis and Harrison's grades, that beats Suh, Casey and McCoy's grade despite the fact they've combined to play at least 44 fewer snaps than each of them. In other words, the Jets can claim that they are getting the best nose tackle play in the NFL right now, especially against the run.

However, it was the star of their defense, and one of the main reasons the nose tackles are grading out so well, that without question shone brightest of all last night. Muhammad Wilkerson drew a holding penalty and had a strip sack, two pressures, two tackles in the backfield and two other tackles on plays that went for a short gain. If he could have just got a finger on that shovel pass to Jason Snelling, it would have been pretty much a perfect performance and on a big national stage, too. I can't get my head round how Jon Gruden kept saying he is going to be a star like he'll become even better than he is right now. Is that even possible?

Last but not least, Leger Douzable got the Jets their first turnover since opening day when he recovered a Ryan fumble forced by Wilkerson. Douzable also had one pressure, but did jump offside on another play.

Edge Rushers

It was a disappointingly quiet performance by Quinton Coples in terms of impact plays, leading some to question how far along he is in his recovery from his ankle injury back in August. However, there were flashes from Coples, who definitely played his part in terms of drawing plenty of attention from blockers. Early in the game, he beat the right tackle handily with an inside move and the back had to come across and pick him up. That was important, because it established the threat and that led the Falcons to dedicate extra bodies towards stopping him at various times. Coples did get close to pressuring Ryan three times, only for Ryan to make a quick throw, and then on the one time he broke free and hit him, there was a penalty on the backend coverage. In the second half, he did look like he started to tire, playing 60 snaps overall.

Against the run, Coples came up big at the goal line, shooting a gap into the backfield to blow up the run on the last play of the half. He did come too far upfield on Jacquizz Rodgers' first touchdown run, although to some extent it's his assignment to get upfield and force the run back inside and there were bodies there, they just failed to make the play with Jaiquawn Jarrett getting initially blocked and then missing an arm tackle when he got off the block at the last moment and Darrin Walls overpursuing to the inside and losing contain.

One interesting factor this week was his role. Throughout preseason and, to an extent since he's made his return, Coples has been on the outside on rushing downs and inside on passing downs. However, when the Jets went to a four man front on passing downs, that was when Coples was usually rested with Richardson and Wilkerson (and sometimes Douzable) used inside. Coples played just six reps inside overall, which would usually be where he generates some of his pass rushing production.

Those who misunderstand his role within this defense will point to the fact that he was just standing on seven plays as a sign that the "transition" to "linebacker" is not being implemented, but he was the primary weakside rusher more than half of the time, just opting to put his hand in the dirt on most of those reps. He dropped into coverage just four times and there was a mix-up on one as he re-routed Tony Gonzalez at the snap and then dropped off underneath, but the fullback ran out uncovered to the flat for an easy first down. That may have been Antonio Cromartie's responsibility though, because he dropped off with the wide receiver who was already covered and then came up late to make the stop.

Antwan Barnes had an interesting performance, which sadly ended prematurely when he suffered a knee injury. Newday's Kimberley Martin reports that she heard it was "just a tweak" although Rex Ryan said he didn't have an update yet, but it "didn't look good". If he's expected to be out for any length of time (and perhaps even if he isn't), I would anticipate that the Jets will bring back Ricky Sapp who was waived last week in a numbers move that was always likely to be temporary. Barnes was only credited with one pressure and no tackles, but actually got close three other times. His best highlight was definitely this though...

With Barnes hurt, the Jets turned to Garrett McIntyre who had three pressures in the fourth quarter, one on the outside, one on a stunt up the middle and one as he flushed the quarterback from the pocket.

Linebackers

David Harris and Demario Davis certainly filled up the stat sheet, with Harris' 14 tackles representing his best output since Thanksgiving Day in 2009 and Davis adding eight tackles of his own. However, neither graded out too well, in large part due to the success the Falcons had passing the ball over the middle. Harris and Davis gave up a combined 13 catches on 14 targets and had three penalties between them (and although #56 was called on two of these, it actually looked like all three should be on Harris). Harris also had three missed tackles, including one that led to a first down on a third and three play and, moreso than in recent weeks, was blocked out of a few plays including on both of Rodgers' touchdown runs. Davis was more disciplined as he didn't miss any tackles, but he was blocked out of one play that went for decent yardage by a pulling guard.

While they found themselves on the end of a lot of negative plays, there's no question that they each had a tough assignment, often having to deal with Tony Gonzalez (who has 22 catches for almost 250 yards in the last two weeks), but also having to pick up crossing routes from the Falcons' speedy receivers in zone coverage. With Matt Ryan in a nice rhythm and finding the gaps in the zone defense, they were always going to be on the wrong end of some plays. At the same time, there were plenty of positives with Harris making seven of his tackles close to the line of scrimmage, including one big hit in the flat for a loss. Davis shot a gap to make a tackle in the backfield, stuffed one other run and took out the lead blocker on a couple of plays that were stopped.

Cornerbacks

There's a lot of interest in Darrin Walls' performance this week. He didn't play too badly in coverage but he did make a mistake on Rodgers first touchdown run and also had a missed tackle on a cutback run that went for a solid gain.

Overall, he was targeted nine times and gave up six catches for 42 yards. While he did give up a 12 yard catch on third and three, four of these plays saw him close quickly to restrict the gain to between seven and nine yards. That actually benefited the Jets, who seemed to fare well in second and short situations all day long, often because the Falcons were tempted to run it and then unsuccessful in doing so, leading to a third down situation. The other catch he gave up saw him make a terrific play, closing to cut down Harry Douglas for a loss. He actually gave up two other catches, but both were negated by penalties, one on the Jets and one as his man pushed off.

It could have been a much better day for Walls, who stepped in front of a rare errant pass by Ryan and could have returned it the distance but dropped the potential pick. He had another two passes go off his hands, but these were tougher - one over the shoulder as Ryan was hit as he threw and one which was more of a well timed pass breakup on a throw to the end zone. Based on everything I've seen from him so far, Walls does not have very good hands. He also dropped an easy interception against the Chargers last season and dropped an easy pick six with the ball right in his hands when with the Falcons a couple of years ago.

Antonio Cromartie had quite the battle with Julio Jones in this one, but also had to play plenty of zone coverage, which he appeared to struggle with at times. Cromartie stayed with Jones on a deep ball, as Jones wanted a pass interference call because Cromartie had a hand on his shoulder as he tried to stay with him. Later on, Jones got a step on Cromartie deep, but Cromartie was able to recover well enough to disrupt the catch and the ball fell incomplete in the end zone. Then on a throw to the outside, Jones was ruled to have pushed off, but on the next play Jones beat him deep for a 46-yard one-handed catch, despite Cromartie's interference this time. He had a couple of missed tackles and was too far off on a couple of other catches, but he showed great hustle to make a touchdown saving tackle after Jones recovered Roddy White's fumble. Cromartie's best coverage play of the day saw him break up a pass in the end zone, but that was negated by a flag on Harris.

Off the bench, Kyle Wilson drew the Gonzalez assignment a few times, giving up a first down on 4th and one. He also got lucky on an earlier play near the goal line where Gonzalez ran the exact same route, but this time the pass was offline because Jarrett hit Ryan as he threw it. Each time, Wilson was right with Gonzalez, but couldn't prevent the fourth down catch and likely wouldn't have been able to do much about the potential touchdown pass either. Wilson also got lucky when a pass near the goal line was off Douglas' fingertips. Overall, he gave up four catches on six targets, but limited the damage to 22 yards with good tackling (although he did have one missed tackle). He was badly blocked out of the play at the second level on Rodgers' long touchdown run though.

Ellis Lankster was in for a few plays and gave up a catch to Gonzalez on a play where he covered him about as well as you could. On another play, Gonzalez got away with a push off and made another catch. Lankster's physical play does make him a viable option to cover tight ends in certain packages, but I'd still like to see him get more conventional reps than he is.

Safeties

One interesting wrinkle from this game was that Josh Bush got some significant playing time for the first time in his career. He was in for 25 snaps, having only previously played 20 snaps in his career. He made an immediate impact, jarring the ball loose downfield for what should have been the Jets' first turnover since week one, only for Dawan Landry to misfield it, tripping Davis over in the process. He gave up one first down and had a missed tackle, but did make a crucial touchdown saving tackle on a wide receiver screen at the goal line.

Rex Ryan said that Jarrett started this game for matchup reasons, but that Antonio Allen should return to the starting lineup this week. Jarrett bears no resemblence to the player who started for Philadelphia two years ago, making rookie mistakes all over the place and hardly any positive contributions. Here he had a forced fumble of his own, assisted on two tackles near the line and hit Ryan to disrupt his throw on a blitz up the middle in the red zone. In the second half, he did give up a couple of first downs because he was too far off in zone coverage and he failed to stop Rodgers on his first touchdown as mentioned above, but Jarrett is certainly making his presence felt out there with some big hitting and no major mistakes so far.

Allen still did play 16 snaps and had three tackles. His best moment on defense saw him make an open field tackle inside the five.

Finally, Landry had a bad missed tackle downfield on Rodgers' long touchdown run and was beaten for a touchdown in coverage. He did have one other missed tackle and gave up one other short catch on 2nd and 20. There were some positives though, as he was productive in the pass rush, pressuring Ryan four times off the same blindside blitz. He also helped Bush make the stop at the goal line. It would have been a better day for him if he secured that fumble recovery though.

Special Teams

This was definitely the best game so far on special teams, with Nick Folk's game winning field goal, long returns by Clyde Gates and Jeremy Kerley, each of which led to a touchdown and Allen's blocked punt on the first series which helped to set the tone. Aside from his perfect field goal kicking so far, Nick Folk added another five touchbacks to give him 17 on the year. In 2012, he had 12.

Give McIntyre credit too, because he had a crucial tackle following the blocked punt. That would have been a big blow if the Falcons managed to convert the first down off the rebound. He did have one missed tackle in coverage though. Konrad Reuland and Isaiah Trufant made the key blocks on the two big returns, although Reuland later had a missed tackle too. Nick Bellore did a solid job in coverage, with two tackles and Lankster forced a fair catch.

If I have one minor quibble, it's that Ryan Quigley had an underwhelming game as a punter. He'll have to improve quickly if he wants to quieten his quitics. Er, critics.

Conclusions

An exhilarating win for the Jets should be tempered by the fact that although it's the third game they've won this year, they nearly blew it in all of them. However, given the fact that this team wasn't even supposed to be competitive, they're already exceeding most people's expectations and it's clear that there is still some room for growth and some signs of life in those areas.

Up next is a home game against the winless Steelers, which I'll obviously be here to preview on Sunday morning. Naturally the Steelers have their issues so far this season, but they're no pushover and the Jets have shown that they can be inconsistent and shoot themselves in the foot, so they can't afford to take this one lightly.

If you have anything you'd like me to take a closer look at or any other questions for me, leave them in the comments section of either BGA post, tweet them to @Bent_Double or email bentdouble@gmail.com and I'll respond in BGA Extra on Wednesday.

Tags: BGA, Bent Double

New York Jets wide receiver Jermaine Kearse catches a pass during the second half against the Kansas City Chiefs at MetLife Stadium. (Ed Mulholland/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Jets wide receiver Jermaine Kearse catches a pass during the second half against the Kansas City Chiefs at MetLife Stadium. (Ed Mulholland/USA TODAY Sports)

Richard Sherman has kept tabs on former teammate Jermaine Kearse and went out of his way to praise the receiver. Sherman scribed a piece for The Players' Tribune called "Underrated Wide Receivers 101", highlighting who he believes to be underrated receivers in the league. He led with Kearse. 

The Jets acquired Kearse from the Seahawks, along with a second-round pick, for Sheldon Richardson just before the season started. Kearse has made 52 catches for 681 yards and 5 touchdowns this season-- all already career highs or on pace to set career highs. 

"It's safe to say that Jermaine is clutch," Sherman said. "And ridiculously underrated..."

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Vacc's 3 keys to Jets win 00:01:36
SNY NFL Insider Ralph Vacchiano gives his three keys to a Jets victory over the New Orleans Saints on Sunday.

SNY NFL Insider Ralph Vacchiano gives his three keys to a Jets victory over the New Orleans Saints on Sunday.

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Aug 19, 2017; Detroit, MI, USA; New York Jets quarterback Josh McCown (15) quarterback Bryce Petty (9) and quarterback Christian Hackenberg (5) during the second quarter against the Detroit Lions at Ford Field. Mandatory Credit: Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports (Tim Fuller)
Aug 19, 2017; Detroit, MI, USA; New York Jets quarterback Josh McCown (15) quarterback Bryce Petty (9) and quarterback Christian Hackenberg (5) during the second quarter against the Detroit Lions at Ford Field. Mandatory Credit: Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports (Tim Fuller)

THE GAME: The Jets (5-9) at the New Orleans Saints (9-4) at the Superdome in New Orleans on Sunday, Dec. 17 at 1 p.m. ET.

THE WEATHER: It's a dome, so I wouldn't worry about it.

WHAT IT MEANS: Well, technically the Jets are alive...

Tags: Bryce Petty
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Wilkerson not playing at Saints 00:02:19
Jeane Coakley and Ralph Vacchiano report from Jets practice where the team announced that Muhammad Wilkerson will not play this Sunday.
Tags: Muhammad Wilkerson

Jonas Schwartz and Willie Colon are frustrated after another loss in a game they were supposed to win. The guys discuss Josh McCown's broken left hand, and how it impacts the team going forward. Later, Jets linebacker Demario Davis joins the show to talk about his leadership as team captain, McCown's impact, and the rise of the team's young linebackers - Darron Lee and Jordan Jenkins.

Click below to listen

Tags: Darron Lee, Demario Davis, Jordan Jenkins
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New York Jets defensive end Muhammad Wilkerson (96) celebrates after intercepting the ball, during the first half of an NFL football game against the Miami Dolphins, Sunday, Oct. 22, 2017, in Miami Gardens, Fla. (AP Photo/Lynne Sladky) (Lynne Sladky/AP)
New York Jets defensive end Muhammad Wilkerson (96) celebrates after intercepting the ball, during the first half of an NFL football game against the Miami Dolphins, Sunday, Oct. 22, 2017, in Miami Gardens, Fla. (AP Photo/Lynne Sladky) (Lynne Sladky/AP)

Jets DE Muhammad Wilkerson is out for Sunday's game against the game after he was benched for showing up late to the team facility Friday. 

Wilkerson will not travel with the team to New Orleans as it was a 'coaching decision,' according to head coach Todd Bowles. Wilkerson supposedly showed up to the facility "very late," a source told SNY's Ralph Vacchiano. This is the third straight year the 28-year-old has been benched for being late. 

This season, Wilkerson has been underperforming with only 3.5 sacks and 46 combined tackles. 

Tags: Brian Winters, Matt Forte, Muhammad Wilkerson
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Wilkerson will not play Sunday 00:03:02
The Daily News Live crew discusses Jets defensive end Muhammad Wilkerson not traveling to play in New Orleans this Sunday due to tardiness.

FLORHAM PARK, N.J. - Muhammad Wilkerson has no future with the Jets. He knows it and they know it. He'll be released long before his 2018 salary is guaranteed on March 16.

And really, there's no reason to wait that long anymore.

Wilkerson was punished by Jets coach Todd Bowles on Friday, after he showed up late -- very late -- to the team facility, according to a team source. Bowles immediately told the 28-year-old malcontent he wouldn't be traveling to New Orleans with the team for the game on Sunday. And according to one team source, his pseudo-suspension could last longer than that.

Tags: Muhammad Wilkerson, Ralph Vacchiano
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New York Jets defensive end Muhammad Wilkerson gestures after a play against the Buffalo Bills during the second half of an NFL football game, Thursday, Nov. 2, 2017, in East Rutherford, N.J. (AP Photo/Bill Kostroun) (Bill Kostroun/AP)
New York Jets defensive end Muhammad Wilkerson gestures after a play against the Buffalo Bills during the second half of an NFL football game, Thursday, Nov. 2, 2017, in East Rutherford, N.J. (AP Photo/Bill Kostroun) (Bill Kostroun/AP)

Jets DE Muhammad Wilkerson will not travel with the team to New Orleans to face the Saints on Sunday, head coach Todd Bowles said on Friday, saying it was a 'coaching decision' -- not injury-related.

Wilkerson was very late to the Jets' facility today, which is why he was benched, a source told SNY's Ralph Vacchiano, who says it wouldn't be a surprise if this isn't just a one-game punishment, either.

Earlier this month, a day after he benched Wilkerson for most of the first quarter because he showed up late to a team meeting, Bowles said he still considers the 28-year-old defensive end a team leader.

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Aug 26, 2017; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets quarterback Bryce Petty (9) calls a play at the line during the third quarter of a preseason game against the New York Giants at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Aug 26, 2017; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets quarterback Bryce Petty (9) calls a play at the line during the third quarter of a preseason game against the New York Giants at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

The Jets (5-8) face the Saints (9-4) on Sunday in New Orleans. Here's what's going on today…

Need to know

The Jets practice today at Florham Park and Todd Bowles should be providing an injury update later. SNY's Ralph Vacchiano will be attending practice this week. Follow @RVacchianoSNY on Twitter to keep up with all the latest Jets news and rumors…

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John Morton on quitting vs. DEN 00:00:31
Jets offensive coordinator John Morton admits to calling it quits in Sunday's loss to the Denver Broncos.

Jets OC John Morton said his team waved the white flag last Sunday against the Broncos, with his team trailing, 23-0, in the fourth quarter.

"Listen, the game was out of hand and I didn't want to let some bad stuff happen," Morton said. "At that time, I don't like to say, 'No mas,' but it was time to get out of there. They kicked our butts, they kicked our butts. Sometimes that happens in the National Football League."

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | ArchiveI know there are some people bothered by this, but I don't get it at all. Jets offensive coordinator John Morton gave an honest and reasonable answer to a question about why he wasn't being more aggressive with his play calling in the fourth quarter...

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Kerley blames ghost for PED's 00:05:09
On Loud Mouths, the guys fill in the blanks on hot topics including Manny Machado, Ian Kinsler, Jeremy Kerley's ghost and Star Wars.

Jets wide receiver Jeremy Kerley said he still wasn't sure how a banned substance in his system led to a four-game suspension and suggested it was because of a ghost.

"I don't know, a lot of ghosts around here," Kerley said, according to Newsday's Calvin Watkins. "Ghost put it in. You know the ghost of Christmas past."

Tags: Jeremy Kerley
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Alabama Crimson Tide offensive lineman Korren Kirven (Jason Getz/USA TODAY Sports)
Alabama Crimson Tide offensive lineman Korren Kirven (Jason Getz/USA TODAY Sports)

The Jets signed offensive tackle Korren Kirven to the practice squad and released tight end Zach Conque, the team announced Friday.

Kirven, an undrafted rookie out of Alabama, had signed with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers after the 2017 draft.

Conque was with the Jets' practice squad for three weeks after the Houston Texans waived/injured him in August.

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GEICO SportsNite: Jets' plan 00:02:06
On GEICO SportsNite, Ralph Vacchiano discusses how the Jets are preparing to face Drew Brees and the formidable New Orleans Saints.

After Josh McCown's season-ending injury, Bryce Petty has been pushed to center stage for the Jets and will be starting this Sunday in New Orleans. The Saints won't take the Jets' backup lightly, citing a lack of film on the former Baylor quarterback.

Publically, multiple members of the Saints' secondary have been respectful of Petty's ability.

"For me having been in this league for a while, it's actually scarier going against a guy you don't have a lot of film on..."

Tags: Bryce Petty
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4 Keys to beating the Saints 00:04:30
On Jets Game Plan, the crew discusses the keys to stopping Drew Brees and the red-hot New Orleans Saints this week.

On Jets Game Plan, the crew discusses the keys to stopping Drew Brees and the red-hot New Orleans Saints this week.


Aug 31, 2017; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets quarterback Christian Hackenberg (5) (Ed Mulholland)
Aug 31, 2017; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets quarterback Christian Hackenberg (5) (Ed Mulholland)

FLORHAM PARK, N.J. - Bryce Petty will make his fifth career start for the Jets on Sunday in New Orleans because Josh McCown has a broken left hand and because, as Todd Bowles said, "Bryce is the next man up."

That's a nice, tidy coach-speak way of avoiding the obvious truth about that decision: Starting Petty makes very little sense at this point for the 5-8 Jets. They need to see Christian Hackenberg play...

Tags: Bryce Petty, Christian Hackenberg, Ralph Vacchiano
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Aug 19, 2017; Detroit, MI, USA; New York Jets quarterback Josh McCown (15) quarterback Bryce Petty (9) and quarterback Christian Hackenberg (5) during the second quarter against the Detroit Lions at Ford Field. Mandatory Credit: Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports (Tim Fuller)
Aug 19, 2017; Detroit, MI, USA; New York Jets quarterback Josh McCown (15) quarterback Bryce Petty (9) and quarterback Christian Hackenberg (5) during the second quarter against the Detroit Lions at Ford Field. Mandatory Credit: Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports (Tim Fuller)

FLORHAM PARK, N.J. - Josh McCown may be out for the season and unsigned for 2018, but he's not done helping the Jets young players just yet.

The 38-year-old quarterback was back on the practice field on Thursday, just two days after undergoing surgery on his broken left hand, and he will travel with the Jets to New Orleans this weekend for their game against the Saints on Sunday afternoon. There, according to Jets coach Todd Bowles, McCown will serve as a "player-coach" as quarterback Bryce Petty makes his first start of the year...

Tags: Bryce Petty, Josh McCown
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Nov 2, 2017; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets running back Matt Forte (22) celebrates his touchdown against the Buffalo Bills during the second half at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports (Vincent Carchietta)
Nov 2, 2017; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets running back Matt Forte (22) celebrates his touchdown against the Buffalo Bills during the second half at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports (Vincent Carchietta)

Matt Forte (knee) missed practice again Thursday. The good news, though, is he was the only player who missed Wednesday's practice to sit out Thursday's as well.

All of CB Morris Claiborne (foot), RB Elijah McGuire (ankle), S Rontez Miles (hamstring), CB Rashard Robinson (not injury related) and G Brian Winters (abdomen, ankle) were limited participants Thursday after being unable to go on Wednesday. 

LB Bruce Carter (groin) and LS Thomas Hennessy (concussion) were also limited participants. 

The Jets travel to New Orleans to play the Saints this Sunday in Bryce Petty's  first start of the season.

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GEICO SportsNite: Petty to start 00:01:59
With Josh McCown sidelined due to a broken hand, Bryce Petty is motivated to prove his worth in the final three games of the season.

The Jets (5-8) face the Saints (9-4) on Sunday in New Orleans. Here's what's going on today…

Need to know

The Jets practice today at Florham Park and Todd Bowles should be providing an injury update later. SNY's Ralph Vacchiano will be attending practice this week. Follow @RVacchianoSNY on Twitter to keep up with all the latest Jets news and rumors…

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Dec 3, 2017; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets running back Matt Forte (22) runs the ball against Kansas City Chiefs corner back Darrelle Revis (24) during the first quarter at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Dec 3, 2017; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets running back Matt Forte (22) runs the ball against Kansas City Chiefs corner back Darrelle Revis (24) during the first quarter at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

As he has done for the last month, RB Matt Forte (knee) was on the sidelines during the Jets' practice on Wednesday. 

LB Mo Claiborne (foot), RB Eli McGuire (ankle), DB Rontez Miles (hamstring), OL Brian Winters (abdomen/ankle) and DB Rashard Robinson (excused) joined Forte as inactives.

LB Bruce Carter (groin) and LS Tom Hennessy (concussion) were limited.

Tags: Brian Winters, Elijah McGuire, Matt Forte, Morris Claiborne, Rontez Miles
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 (Brad Penner)
(Brad Penner)

Jets LB Demario Davis has been a cornerstone of the team's defense this season, but it wasn't always that way. 

When returning to the Jets this offseason after a season with the Browns, fans and media crushed Davis, saying he wasn't worth bringing back after serving four previous season in Green & White. Davis didn't prove them wrong in the first two weeks of the season either as he struggled mightily on the field. 

Davis spoke with SNY's Jonas Schwartz and Willie Colon on "The Jet Stream Podcast" to talk about how he dealt with the pressure, and turned around his season...

Tags: Demario Davis
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Dec 31, 2016; Orlando, FL, USA; Louisville Cardinals quarterback Lamar Jackson (8) is sacked for a safety by LSU Tigers defensive end Arden Key (49) during the first half at Camping World Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports (Kim Klement)
Dec 31, 2016; Orlando, FL, USA; Louisville Cardinals quarterback Lamar Jackson (8) is sacked for a safety by LSU Tigers defensive end Arden Key (49) during the first half at Camping World Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports (Kim Klement)

The Jets will select LSU DE Arden Key with the tenth overall pick in the 2018 NFL Draft, predicts ESPN's Todd McShay.

Despite the Jets' need for a steady arm at the quarterback position, McShay points out their edge rushers need some improvement as well. This is why McShay can't see the Jets passing up on who he thinks is the most natural defensive end coming out of college this season...

CLICK BELOW TO SEE MCSHAY'S ANALYSIS ON KEY

Tags: Leonard Williams, Muhammad Wilkerson
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New York Jets quarterback Bryce Petty (9) drops back to pass against the New York Giants during the third quarter of a preseason game at MetLife Stadium. (Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports)
New York Jets quarterback Bryce Petty (9) drops back to pass against the New York Giants during the third quarter of a preseason game at MetLife Stadium. (Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports)

The Jets (5-8) face the Saints (9-4) on Sunday in New Orleans. Here's what's going on today…

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 (Marc DesRosiers)
(Marc DesRosiers)

The Jets worked out two CFL players on Tuesday: WR DaVaris Daniels and CB Garry Peters, reports NY Daily News' Manish Mehta. 

The 6-foot-1, 207 pound Daniels has played his past two seasons with the Calgary Stampeders, who made it to the Grey Cup last season. In 13 games last season, the Notre Dame product caught 47 receptions for 743 yards and four touchdowns. 

Peters has played for the Edmonton Eskimos the past two seasons, where he most recently won the Grey Cup. The 5-foot-11, 190 pound cornerback notched 35 tackles and three special teams tackles this past season. 

As the custom with CFL players converting to the NFL, the Jets may be looking at Daniels and Peters for potential futures deals after the season. CFL players generally are not allowed to sign with NFL teams until their contracts expire in February. 

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 (Isaiah J. Downing)
(Isaiah J. Downing)

Bent, theJetsBlog.com Follow on Twitter

The Jets overcame a shaky start to break out of their slump with their finest offensive performance of the season so far against the Chiefs. A late touchdown by Josh McCown gave the Jets the lead and the defense held on to preserve a 38-31 shootout win.

Let's review the defensive performance from Sunday's win:

Tags: Buster Skrine, Darron Lee, Demario Davis, Jamal Adams, Leonard Williams, Marcus Maye, Morris Claiborne, Muhammad Wilkerson, Rontez Miles, Steve McLendon
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Dec 10, 2017; Denver, CO, USA; New York Jets head coach Todd Bowles looks on in the second quarter 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 head coach Todd Bowles looks on in the second quarter against the Denver Broncos at Sports Authority Field at Mile High. Mandatory Credit: Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports (Isaiah J. Downing)

The Jets (5-8) face the Saints (9-4) on Sunday in New Orleans. Here's what's going on today…

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New York Jets quarterback Bryce Petty during the game against the Oakland Raiders during the second quarter at Oakland Coliseum. (Stan Szeto/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Jets quarterback Bryce Petty during the game against the Oakland Raiders during the second quarter at Oakland Coliseum. (Stan Szeto/USA TODAY Sports)

Jets coach Todd Bowles said QB Bryce Petty will be prepared to start this weekend when the team faces the Saints in New Orleans.

Petty was inserted into the starting role after QB Josh McCown was lost for the remainder of the season due to a hand injury.

Tags: Bryce Petty, Josh McCown
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Dec 3, 2017; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets quarterback Josh McCown (15) celebrates a two point conversion run by running back Elijah McGuire (25) (not shown) during the second half at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports  (Ed Mulholland)
Dec 3, 2017; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets quarterback Josh McCown (15) celebrates a two point conversion run by running back Elijah McGuire (25) (not shown) during the second half at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports (Ed Mulholland)

Jets QB Josh McCown was named a finalist for the Art Rooney Sportsmanship Award. 

The award recognizes players who demonstrate the best on-field sportsmanship qualities that include fair play, respect for the game and opponents, and integrity in competition, according to USA Today. 

The other finalists include Browns T Joe Thomas, Chargers TE Antonio Gates, Redskins TE Vernon Davis, Panthers LB Luke Kuechly, Lions DT Haloti Ngata, 49ers T Joe Staley, and Chiefs QB Alex Smith. Staley, Smith and Kuechly have all been finalists in previous years.

Tags: Josh McCown
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Who do the Jets turn to at QB? 00:02:20
The Daily News Live crew debates over who the Jets should start at quarterback with Josh McCown being ruled out for the rest of the season.

Jets QB Josh McCown is out for the rest of the season as he needs surgery on his broken left hand, according to head coach Todd Bowles. 

McCown suffered the injury in the third quarter of Sunday's 23-0 loss to the Broncos. He walked off the field in obvious pain, and underwent X-rays during the game. He received a second opinion on the hand, and it was suggested he should get surgery to repair it. 

"It just sucks," McCown said emotionally after the game. 

Tags: Jamal Adams, Josh McCown
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 (Ron Chenoy)
(Ron Chenoy)

Bent, theJetsBlog.com Follow on Twitter

Any lingering hopes of the Jets remaining in playoff contention were put to rest by a struggling Broncos team that was met with scant resistance in their 23-0 win. This continues a season-long pattern of futility on the road for this Jets team, which drops to 5-8 on the year and now seems destined to end up 5-11 for the season season in a row.

Let's start this week by breaking down the performances on the offensive side of the ball:

Tags: ArDarius Stewart, Austin Seferian-Jenkins, Brandon Shell, Brent Qvale, Brian Winters, Elijah McGuire, James Carpenter, Josh McCown, Matt Forte, Robby Anderson
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GEICO SportsNite: FNNY on Jets 00:03:08
The Football Night in New York crew break down the Jets ugly 23-0 loss to the Broncos in Denver on Sunday.

After Jets quarterback Josh McCown suffered a broken left hand in Sunday's 23-0 loss to the Denver Broncos, second-string quarterback Bryce Petty said he feels "ready" to step up for New York's Week 15 matchup against the New Orleans Saints.

"I am going to give my heart and soul and prepare for this week for New Orleans," Petty said, according to NJ.com's Connor Hughes. "Whatever happens in the future, happens, but all I can do is worry about things I can control. Whether Josh plays, or whether he doesn't, I am going to go in there prepared and ready to lead this team."

Given McCown's injury is on his non-throwing hand, it is unclear if he will play during the team's final three games of the season. Head coach Todd Bowles said McCown will undergo further tests this week to evaluate his status for the rest of the season.

Tags: Bryce Petty, Christian Hackenberg, Denver Broncos, Josh McCown, New Orleans Saints
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