Week 6: A Tale Of Two Defenses
Run defense awful but pass defense great in win over Jets.
by Steve Saslow
Here are our position by position grades:
Trent Edwards was doing ok going 5 for 5 for 43 yards before leaving with an injury early in the 2nd quarter. Ryan Fitzpatrick took over like many hoped he would and promptly went three and out. He would do a lot of that has he struggled but did find Lee Evans for a 37 yard touchdown pass and had enough poise to put the Bills in position for the winning kick. His QB rating was a very Edwards like 51.4 as he was just 10 of 25 passing for 116 yards. He had one interception but another pick was negated by a penalty and he had several near picks. Grade D: Fitzpatrick got the win but he's not the answer.
Marshawn Lynch and Fred Jackson split time in the backfield again. Lynch had 19 carries for 61 yards and Jackson had 15 carries for 52 yards but neither did too much running the ball although Jackson ran with a bit more authority. Corey McIntyre saw the field in this game and caught an 18 yard pass. He was used as a blocker as well for the first time all year. Grade C+: Still waiting for a breakthrough performance by the dynamic duo.
Terrell Owens drew two holding penalties against all-world CB Darrel Revis in the first half. He did drop two passes that would have given the Bills first downs and was shutdown for the most part by Revis. He had just three catches for 13 yards and added nine yards on a reverse. Lee Evans finally was an option in the second half as Fitzpatrick found him four times total for 68 yards including a pretty 37 yard catch and run for the team's only touchdown. He also pulled in a deep ball in overtime but it was overturned since the ball was moving as he went out of bounds. Josh Reed and Derek Fine each had a catch. Shawn Nelson had a false start penalty and two catches including a 25 yard gain. Grade C-: Still not much from this unit besides Evans big play.
The makeshift unit only gave up one sack but their was constant pressure on the quarterbacks but Fitzpatrick seemed to do a decent job of getting out of trouble. Jonathan Scott did not play and was replaced by Jamon Meredith who seemed to hold his own. Geoff Hangartner took on former teammate Kris Jenkins and was called for a holding penalty. Jenkins was dominant before getting hurt. Eric Wood got called for a holding penalty. Grade B-: They have done worse.
Aaron Schobel had a big tackle on a third and 4 play. He had eight tackles. Chris Kelsay was in on 12 tackles. Marcus Stroud had pressure on a first quarter play forcing a punt and so did Kyle Williams. Stroud also was called for an offside penalty. Ryan Denney had no tackles. Aaron Maybin was also called for an offsides penalty as he lined up about a yard past the line. Spencer Johnson had three tackles. Grade F: Allowed big holes in the running game and put little pressure on the rookie QB.
Paul Posluszny returned to the lineup and struggled mightily as the linebackers were constantly out of position and allowed long runs starting with him in the middle. He did redeem himself with an interception in overtime and had nine tackles. Ashlee Palmer dropped an interception that would have went for six. He had six tackles. Keith Ellison had 12 tackles. Chris Draft came in for one play and has a sack. Grade F: A lot of tackles downfield after long runs as the Jets ran for over 300 yards.
Donte Whitner's return to the lineup was short lived as he left with an ankle injury after getting two tackles. Terrence McGee showed heart and hustle running down Thomas Jones twice on long runs. The 2nd one was too late and a horse collar but it was a great effort. He would leave the game with an injury as well. Drayton Florence did a nice job in coverage. Jairus Byrd had two interceptions and George Wilson had one. Reggie Corner had a bad interception since it came on 4th down and cost the Bills 13 yards in field position. Grade A+: Four picks and only 96 yards passing. Not bad for a unit that was missing all four opening day starters after Whitner and McGee left.
Brian Moorman was an unsung hero with four punts dropped inside the 20 on a very windy day at the Meadowlands. He averaged 41.8 yards with a 41.6 yard net. Rian Lindell hit three of four field goals missing from 46 into the wind but hitting from 33, 25, and the game winner from 47. Roscoe Parrish did not play so Fred Jackson returned kicks and punts. He had a good 20 yard punt called back by a 12 men on the field penalty. His long kickoff return on the opening kickoff of the 2nd half was brought back by a block in the back penalty on Ashlee Palmer. Jackson did have one punt return for 27 yards and averaged 22 yards on three kickoff returns. Josh Reed unintentionally touched a punt late in the first half allowing the Jets to recover. Grade D: Moorman, Lindell, and Jackson helped overcome stupid mental mistakes.
Dick Jauron's team remains very undisciplined as penalties continued to kill them. Fortunately the Jets were more undisciplined and had more big penalties. Alex Van Pelt put the team back in the huddle and re-introduced the fullback to the offense. They also went to a gap blocking scheme on the offensive line that seemed to help them a little bit. Edwards got hurt on a three step drop on a third and 2 play. It makes no sense to take three step drops behind a make shift offensive line. The timid play in the red zone is one of the reasons they struggle scoring. They played not to lose at the end of regulation and the result was a long field goal attempt into the wind that was no good. Perry Fewell's pass defense played inspired through many injuries. He still has no answers for a run defense that is like a sieve. Bobby April's units continue to make mental mistakes. The 12 men on the field on the punt gave the Jets a field goal. Grade D: The win was more because of how poorly the Jets played than anything the Bills did.
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