The New York Jets are Practically Running Backwards

Melissa FalicaContributor IOctober 2, 2008

There is really nothing impressive about the running game of the New York Jets. It has been practically nonexistent since the 12-year veteran and beloved Jets' star, Curtis Martin retired back in 2007.

The problems with the running game have been visible for the past season or two, but have become especially apparent with the start of the 2008 season.

In the four games this season, the Jets running backs have not even accumulated 400 yards total and are ranked 28th in the league with an average of about 87 yards per game.

This lack of production in the running game cannot solely be blamed on Thomas Jones or Leon Washington, nor can the blame be completely put on the offensive line. Both parties are to blame.

It seems that the majority of the times the offensive line has absolutely no problem whatsoever protecting Brett Favre against the pass rush, yet they lack the ability to perform well with Jones or Washington behind them. With the offensive line's poor blocking, there is no way that both Jones and Washington can possibly get anywhere.

As soon as they touch the ball, there’s a defensive lineman on them already, making it impossible for them to get anywhere.

On the other hand, both Jones and Washington are equally responsible for the slow start.  

Since coming from the Bears, Thomas Jones’ performance has been extremely disappointing. One can say that he is starting to show his age.

On the field, he has been looking increasingly slower and he has not been all that productive in his Jets' career in general.

On the other hand, there is Leon Washington who is an extremely fragile running back. Yes he is quick and agile, but towards the end of last season it was quite evident that the game was taking a physical toll on his body.  

When will the coaches find a way to mend these problems? Who knows?

But there is one thing that I do know: as long as the Jets keep blowing money and valuable picks on below par players, and ignoring the talent that is clearly available in later rounds, the running game will remain at the level it is today.