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Patriots vs. Jets: Full Roster Report Card Grades for New York

Ryan AlfieriCorrespondent IIIOctober 21, 2013

Patriots vs. Jets: Full Roster Report Card Grades for New York

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    The up-and-down season for the Jets continues, as the Jets are able to follow up their disappointing loss to the Steelers with a dramatic win over the 5-1 Patriots.

    While they may have been aided by a controversial penalty at the end of overtime, the Jets earned their win with some clutch performances from their quarterback, running back and defense—which finally got itself a defensive touchdown. 

    Here are the roster grades following the win.

Quarterback

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    Geno Smith: B+

    Geno Smith loses a lot of points for his costly pick-six, but outside of that one throw, he had as good of a game as you could ask for. 

    Smith's numbers are underwhelming (71.9 rating), but his stats aren't indicative of his performance. Smith was victimized by a handful of drops and terrific defensive plays on throws that were accurate. 

    Perhaps the most impressive plays Smith made were on two scrambles. One converted a 3rd-and-14 to set up an ensuing touchdown scramble in which Geno faked out three Patriots defenders. 

    Despite the early mistake, Geno has proven once again that he has the mental makeup of a proven veteran with yet another comeback victory. 

Running Backs

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    Jeff Zelevansky/Getty Images

    Chris Ivory: A-

    This was Chris Ivory's breakout party. After spending the first six weeks either nursing a bum hamstring or sitting on the bench, Ivory was finally given the full workload he has been clamoring for. 

    Ivory showed great burst from the start, and offensive coordinator Marty Mornhinweg rewarded him with 34 carries to produce 104 yards. The Jets rode Ivory for virtually the entire final drive in overtime.

    Ivory, however, does get a minus for his dropped pass—which is at least one area in which Bilal Powell has a clear edge on him.

     

    Bilal Powell: D

    Ivory's breakout performance came at the expense of Bilal Powell's playing time, who finished with just three carries for six yards. As well as Ivory was playing, the fact that Powell was completely phased out of the running game was a bit shocking. 

    Powell, however, does deserve credit for being much better in protection than he was last week.

Wide Receivers

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    Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports

    Jeremy Kerley: A

    Kerley was the most dangerous Jet receiver on the day, catching eight passes for 97 yards, including a touchdown.

    The stats, however, don't do justice as to how clutch Kerley's receptions were. The Smith-Kerley connection produced a handful of long third-down conversions that kept scoring drives alive and Tom Brady off the field.

     

    Stephen Hill: C

    Hill had just one catch for 17 yards. He will get some blame for drawing a pass interference call on a would-be touchdown pass, but it probably saved the Jets from their second interception.

     

    David Nelson: B+

    The midseason addition has provided a ton of value this week. Nelson finished with four catches for 80 yards, several of which were highly contested balls. 

    The Jets can certainly feel much better about their receiver depth with Nelson in the mix.

     

    Josh Cribbs: B+

    For being on the roster for less than a week, the Jets have to be pleased with what they saw from Cribbs. He was effective on three Wildcat runs (4.7 average) and showed some burst on a 21-yard punt return.

Tight End

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    Jeff Cumberland: C

    It was a bit of a mixed bag for Cumberland. While he made a few plays, grabbing three passes for 41 yards, he will be remembered more for his crucial drops than any catch he made. 

    Cumberland dropped a touchdown pass and a third-down pass that likely would have iced the game in regulation (both of which were perfectly thrown by Geno Smith). 

    Luckily for Cumberland, the Jets won the game—so he won't be haunted by his two drops.

Offensive Line

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    Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

    Pass Protection: B+

    The Jets did allow four sacks, but that stat is a bit misleading. Outside of a few individual hiccups, the Jets were much better in protection than last week.

    More often than not, Geno Smith had plenty of time to go through his progressions, allow his routes to develop and deliver an accurate pass. In particular, the running backs were much better after last week's debacle. 

     

    Run Blocking: B

    While the Jets were able to put up a lot of yards on the ground (177), they only averaged 3.4 yards per carry on a season-high 52 attempts. That average includes Geno Smith's six scrambles for 32 yards—which had nothing to do with run blocking.

    Plus, most of Chris Ivory's yards came after contact, as Ivory's physical style wore down the Patriots defense.

    Being able to put up such gaudy rushing totals is impressive against any NFL team, but the stats are a bit misleading.

Defensive Tackle

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    Damon Harrison: A

    Thanks to the Patriots' hurry-up offense, Harrison was the only defensive tackle to see the field on defense. Once again, Harrison was dominant in all facets, except this time he had his first sack of the season—a rarity for the two-gapping run-stuffer.

    After nearly two months of dominance, the former undrafted free agent has emerged as one of the best stories of the NFL season.

Defensive Ends

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    Muhammad Wilkerson: A

    Simply put, Wilkerson was the best defender in the stadium. He was dominant penetrating in the run game and applied a ton of pressure on Brady, even if he only had one sack to show for it.

    His sacks may not show it, but Wilkerson affected more plays than anyone else on the Jets.

     

    Sheldon Richardson: B+

    Richardson got off to a slow start in the pass-rushing department, but he did start to get more pressure as the game went on. 

    Richardson continued to be stout in the run game as well, notching five tackles.

     

    Leger Douzable: D

    Douzable only got a few snaps in on defense, but all he did was draw an offsides penalty.

Linebackers

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    David Harris: C

    This was a relatively quiet game for Harris, who had just five tackles all game with one for a loss. Harris was not a liability in the run game by any stretch, but he did not make nearly as many splash plays as usual and deserves some blame for Rob Gronkowski's big day.

     

    Demario Davis: C+

    Davis deserves some credit for his nine tackles, but he was not as stout in coverage as the Jets hoped he would be. He was responsible for most of Rob Gronkowski's production, as the Patriots took advantage whenever he was not covered by Antonio Allen.

     

    Calvin Pace: C

    Pace had an average game on all fronts. He recorded just three tackles (although they were all behind the line of scrimmage) and was responsible for not setting the edge on one of Stevan Ridley's touchdown runs. He was also a non-factor as a pass-rusher, which is to be expected.

     

    Quinton Coples: C

    I give Coples credit for playing through his surgically repaired ankle, but it was more evident than ever that he is simply not healthy enough to be getting as much playing time as he has gotten in recent weeks. 

    Presumably because of his bad ankle, Coples is having a difficult time covering speed to power while rushing the passer, rendering him almost useless. While he was able to stumble into a strip-sack, he looked as if he was laboring just to get through each play.

    Rex Ryan would be wise to let Coples' ankle rest back to full health over the next few weeks.

Cornerbacks

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    Antonio Cromartie: B

    After getting burned multiple times last week, this was a quiet game for Cromartie—which is a good thing. He only allowed a few completions his way and avoided allowing any receivers to get behind him to make a big play. 

    However, he does lose some points for over-pursuing on the Patriots' first rushing touchdown.

     

    Dee Milliner: C-

    In his first game back from his hamstring injury, Milliner was victimized early and often in this game. He was burned routinely as the Patriots went after him until he proved that he could defend a pass. 

    Milliner simply was either indecisive or not explosive out of his breaks, as his hamstring injury may have still been bothering him.

    It took a while, but Milliner did finally settle into the game in the fourth quarter, as he was in coverage on at least two crucial incompletions. He also deserves at least a little bit of credit for not allowing any big plays, albeit at the cost of shorter completions.

     

    Kyle Wilson: B

    Wilson has quietly strung together a few solid performances in a row. He did not allow many completions his way in the slot and added three solo tackles in the run game.

Safeties

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    Antonio Allen: A

    Faced with the difficult job of defending Rob Gronkowski (mostly on his own), Allen was the biggest star in the Jets secondary all afternoon. 

    Despite the huge size difference, Allen did not back down one bit against Gronk. Most of Gronk's catches came against zone coverage or against linebackers. He even showed great courage coming back into the game after taking a big shot to his rib area.

    Allen also made the biggest play of the game, getting a pick-six that the Jets desperately needed against a quarterback that does not throw man of them.

     

    Dawan Landry: B

    Landry spent most of his time in deep zone coverage and deserves credit for not allowing the Patriots to get many big passing plays.

    As a result, he was not much of a factor in the run game (just two tackles) but he did defend a pass.

     

    Jaiquawn Jarrett: C

    Because of Allen's spectacular play, Jarrett only saw the field when Allen was out for a series after taking a big hit. He recorded one solo tackle.

     

Special Teams

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    Nick Folk: A

    While he got some help from a controversial call in overtime, Folk stays perfect on the season through seven weeks. He hit all three of his field goals (that counted), including yet another game-winning kick on a windy October day.

    The only knock on Folk in this game is that he allowed four kick returns.

     

    Ryan Quigley: D

    It was not a pretty outing for Quigley, who averaged just 40 yards on six punts. While he did redeem himself on the final punt of the game to make his average somewhat respectable, Quigley's job may be in jeopardy after a few shanks.

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