Many questions surrounded the New York Jets heading into the 2012 regular season. After four regular season games have been played, more questions have arisen after the Jets were obliterated by the San Francisco 49ers on Sunday. The New York offense has struggled, so is it time for the team to start considering starting Tim Tebow under center? Will the team make any moves in order to try to bolster the weapons around the quarterback? How much latitude does Rex Ryan have this season, especially if the Jets fail to finish .500 or above?
Mark Sanchez has been under scrutiny since he arrived in the Big Apple. Yes, he won playoff games on the road early on in his career, but at this point, he should be further along in his development.In the first quarter of this season, Sanchez has completed just 49% of his passes and was at 44% against the Niners on Sunday. He finished the afternoon with a 39.9 passer rating. His passes were all over the place on Sunday as he looked horrible. Is it time for the Tim Tebow talk to commence? You knew this discussion was coming as soon as Tebow was signed by the Jets and especially if the Jets struggled early on.
Yes, the Jets are 2-2 currently, but they have beaten a Buffalo Bills team which has struggled mightily on defense so far this season. The Bills were the first team ever to allow another team to score 45 straight points in the second half of a football game in 45 years on Sunday against the New England Patriots. New York also squeaked out a 3-point overtime road win over the Miami Dolphins, a team starting a rookie quarterback and perhaps the only team in the NFL with a worse wide receiver corps than the Jets.
But, is it time for the Jets to start Tim Tebow? Not now. I wouldn’t start Tebow this coming week with the Jets hosting the Houston Texans. If Sanchez lays an egg on Sunday, then start Tebow in week six while hosting the Indianapolis Colts. Rex Ryan has told the media today that Sanchez is the team’s quarterback moving forward. Another embarrassing performance next Sunday and the cry to start Tebow will only increase.
In Sanchez’s defense, the Jets have not surrounded him with any serious offensive weapons. RB Shonn Greene continues to underachieve, posting a paltry 2.8 yard per carry average. Other than WR Santonio Holmes, no other receiver has more than 11 receptions after four games. With Rex Ryan stating this afternoon that Holmes will be out for “weeks”, will the team reach out to a veteran receiver such as Plaxico Burress, Terrell Owens or Chad Johnson? Rookie WR Stephen Hill has been considered a project, but he has been nursing a hamstring injury and was inactive for Sunday’s game. This is a very young, inexperienced receiving corps for the Jets and a veteran addition would be wise at this point.
Heading into this season, head coach Rex Ryan called the 2012 version of the New York Jets, the best Jets team he’s ever coached. This team looks like a trainwreck right now. They have been defeated by a combined score of 61-10 in their two losses. The team struggled mightily in the preseason, scoring just one offensive touchdown in their four games. Did the coaching staff think they would magically flip the switch and get the offense rolling once the regular season started? The 48 points scored in week one against the Bills now appears to be an illusion.
How much longer can Rex Ryan continue his boisterous diatribe without producing a quality product on the field? I think Ryan finds himself on one of the hottest coaching seats in the league this year. The Jets are failing to deliver on his promises after reaching the AFC Championship Game in two consecutive seasons. This does not appear to be a playoff team at this current point. If the Jets fail to miss the playoffs this year, of fail to even reach the .500 level, there could be big changes coming for this organization. Could general manager Mike Tannenbaum be fired? Rex Ryan? Or perhaps both?
There doesn’t appear to be any short-term answer for the Jets. New York could split the next four games and be 4-4 heading into their bye week in week nine. The bad news for the Jets is though, that by the time they take their bye week, five of their home games will have already been played.
Even worse for Jets fans, asked this morning about whether owner Woody Johnson would want a winning season for the Jets or Mitt Romney winning the Presidential election, Johnson chose Romney. Early signs point to a long season and some major changes this coming offseason.