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The Jets were more competitive this week, but still fell 27-13 to the AFC East-leading New England Patriots. Let's review three of the best and worst performances from Sunday's game.
TE Chris Herndon
The rookie Herndon's season-high entering this week's game was four receptions, but he eclipsed that on Sunday as he caught seven passes for 57 yards. Herndon now leads all rookie tight ends in receptions.
While some of these passes were simple dump-offs underneath, those plays still have value, especially considering the Jets don't have much of a running game. Herndon also accounted for three first downs, showing an ability to make yardage after the catch.
Perhaps even more encouragingly, he's showing signs of becoming a better all-round player as he made a couple of good run blocks and avoided any obvious blocking mistakes having previously been inconsistent in that role.
QB Josh McCown
It was far from his best game as a Jet, but McCown passed for 276 yards and a touchdown in a steady performance that at least served the purpose of getting some of the Jets' offensive weapons involved and keeping New York in the game.
McCown, who was sporting a brace on his right hand due to a thumb laceration after the game, showed some veteran grit on two gutsy first-down scrambles and accounted for the Jets' only touchdown on a nice throw to Jermaine Kearse.
S Jamal Adams
Although the defense surrendered almost 500 yards, Adams was everywhere in what have might been be the finest performance of his career so far. Adams was officially credited with 10 tackles and three passes defensed with five of those tackles coming within four yards of the line of scrimmage. Adams was unsuccessfully targeted four times in coverage, including on consecutive plays where he found himself on an island against Rob Gronkowski.
It's unfortunate the Jets spent so long trying to find someone who can cover Gronkowski, yet now that they have someone who apparently can, Gronkowski's career is winding down and the Jets instead struggle in areas where they used to be strong on defense.
OL Brian Winters
Considering the fact that the Jets were forced to shuffle the deck on the offensive line, they didn't fare too badly. However, the veteran Winters had a disappointing performance.
The Jets ran the ball just six times in each half, not making much of an effort to establish a running game. This put the pass protection under added pressure and the Patriots tested the Jets by blitzing linebackers and running a lot of stunts.
On the first drive alone, Winters had one play where his man got off his block to stuff a run, was called for a holding penalty to negate an Elijah McGuire first down and got driven back into McCown's lap once. Overall, he was ineffective in the running game and gave up a couple more pressures, including a fourth quarter sack.
OLB Jordan Jenkins
Jenkins had one of his roughest games of the year on Sunday, as he was ineffective against the run and had some issues in coverage. It was Jenkins that was the closest defender to Julian Edelman on the blown coverage on the go-ahead touchdown. Two plays earlier, Gronkowski had blocked Jenkins to the ground on the edge, setting up a huge lane for James White's 27-yard run.
In the first half, Jenkins, who ended up with three tackles, had been kicked out on another big run and gave up a first down in coverage.
Jenkins failed to come close to generating any pressure other than one quarterback hit, which came on a play in which he was unblocked. He also jumped offside on the drive where the Patriots scored the clinching touchdown in the fourth quarter.
CB Morris Claiborne
On a day when most of the Jets' issues against the pass were to do with their execution in zone coverages, Claiborne had some negative plays in man coverage. Early in the game, Edelman beat him easily on a crossing route and then turned it upfield for a 36-yard gain. Edelman later beat Claiborne for another first down.
Claiborne was also late getting over on Tom Brady's touchdown pass to Gronkowski, missed a tackle and got blocked out of a couple of running plays. The veteran has been solid this year and is a candidate to earn a contract extension, but he needs to play more consistently than he did this week.