Check below for grades and analysis for each of New York's positional units in the huge upset win.
New Orleans: 20
New York: 26
|New York Jets' Game Grades|
|Positional Unit||First-Half Grade||Final Grade|
|vs. Saints Week 9|
Final Analysis for the New York Jets
Pass Offense: Geno Smith wasn't asked to do much, but he still performed well considering the offensive weapons with which he was limited. Without Jeremy Kerley, Jeff Cumberland, and Santonio Holmes, Smith threw for just 115 yards on 19 attempts. However, Smith didn't commit a single turnover, and he made some nifty plays to avoid the New Orleans pass rush.
Run Offense: New York's running game was absolutely superb on Sunday, racking up 198 yards on a 5.5 yards per carry clip. Chris Ivory led the onslaught, as his ferocious running was too much for the Saints defensive front to handle. He finished the outing with 18 carries for 139 yards and a touchdown. Geno Smith also contributed a key rushing touchdown to give the Jets the lead before halftime—a lead they would never cough up.
Pass Defense: Drew Brees threw for 382 yards, and Jimmy Graham went over 100 yards and caught two touchdowns, but the Jets pass defense was nothing short of spectacular in this one, especially in the late stages. Brees was never comfortable in the pocket, as the Jets defensive line continually overpowered the Saints and exploded into the backfield. The secondary also came up with two big interceptions which made the difference. A huge bounce-back performance by the pass defense.
Run Defense: The Saints aren't known for their running game, so it was no surprise that it struggled to find any running room against a dominant Jets defensive front. The Saints had just 41 rushing yards on 13 carries, and they only managed one run of over 10 yards. The front seven also did a tremendous job late, as they shut down New Orleans on a big 4th-and-1 in the fourth quarter.
Special Teams: Nick Folk continued to be automatic, hitting all four of his field goals to move to a perfect 23-for-23 on the season. Josh Cribbs also contributed in the return game, and Ryan Quigley did a decent job pinning New Orleans back within its own 20.
Coaching: Rex Ryan and company took a team coming off a 40-point beatdown and coached them to a victory against a superior football squad. Ryan used his explosive defensive line to harass Drew Brees throughout the game and limit his effectiveness, and Marty Mornhinweg exposed a vulnerable Saints front on the ground.
First-Half Analysis for the New York Jets
Pass Offense: The pass offense took a backseat to the running game in the first half, and rightly so. While the run offense dominated, the passing game didn't do much. Jeremy Kerley left the game in the first quarter, leaving Geno Smith with few weapons. Smith did lead an impressive final drive to give the Jets the lead, though, and he also managed to avoid turning the ball over.
Run Offense: New York's running game dominated a strong New Orleans front in the first half, largely through an inspired effort by Chris Ivory. Ivory, going against his former team, ran with an attitude, racking up 93 yards and a touchdown on 10 carries. Bilal Powell and Josh Cribbs also contributed, and Geno Smith ran for a touchdown late in the second half to give New York the lead. If the Jets can continue to run the ball with success, they could be a dangerous team.
Pass Defense: Drew Brees is on pace for 460 yards and four touchdowns, and the Saints registered two plays of over 50 yards in the first half. However, Gang Green's pass defense did enough to hold an explosive Saints offense to just 14 points. The team managed two big interceptions that led to Jets points, and the pass rush pressured Brees in the pocket, forcing him to make rash decisions. If the defense can continue to make plays, the Jets have a real shot of pulling off the upset.
Run Defense: The Saints don't have much of a running game, and New York has one of the best run defenses in the league, so it's no surprise that New Orleans struggled to move the ball on the ground in the first half. The Saints managed just 16 rushing yards on five carries through the first 30 minutes, with a long run of just seven yards. Don't expect the New Orleans running game to improve in the second half, either, with Darren Sproles out of the game with a concussion.
Special Teams: Nick Folk continued his astonishing season, knocking through his two field-goal attempts to make him 21-for-21 on the year. Josh Cribbs was also solid in the return game, averaging 34.5 yards on two kick returns.
Coaching: Rex Ryan and Marty Mornhinweg called a near-perfect game in the first half. Ryan managed to get pressure on Brees without sacrificing much coverage, and Mornhinweg mixed things up through the wildcat and reverses. The Jets are inferior to the Saints in talent, but you wouldn't know it through the first half because of the job Ryan and Mornhiweg have done.