“Do I expect us to run more than pass? Not really,” Ryan said after Thursday’s practice. “I’d like to be close to balanced. I think that’s where we’ve been the first couple of games. So I think that’s pretty good.”Just as a comparison, Mark Sanchez attempted 53 passes in his first two games as a rookie back in 2009 and he only attempted 30 or more passes five times in his whole first season.
The Jets, who will host the Buffalo Bills on Sunday in a meeting of A.F.C. East teams with 1-1 records, have attempted 74 passes and 61 rushes. Smith dropped back 42 times in a 13-10 loss at the New England Patriots on Sept. 12 in a game that raised questions about how committed Marty Mornhinweg, the new offensive coordinator, would be to the run. The Jets backed off the ground game despite rushing 32 times for 129 yards; Smith threw three interceptions in the fourth quarter.
Mornhinweg is well known for his pass-first approach — “This is the most I’ve ever run,” he said — and Ryan appears to welcome that.
“The old football mentality about, Would I prefer to run the ball than throw it? Yeah, of course,” Ryan said. “But that being said, the way the game is played now, I also like to attack down the field.”
We know that Ryan felt very strongly about getting an attacking downfield offense this past offseason as a way to emulate what he does with the Jets on the defensive side of the ball. We do like Marty Morhinweg's scheme, but the topic of balance and running the ball more will continue to come up until Geno Smith can become a more consistent and productive player who can also protect the football.
We understand that the NFL is not even the league that it was just five years ago and that the Jets need to put the ball in Geno's hands if they want to make this more of an attacking offense, but doing so runs more risk in the hands of a rookie quarterback.