2008 New York Jets Epitaph
Lets bury the New York Jets. One month ago 8-3 coming off two very impressive road wins in New England and the undefeated Titans to go into sole possession of first place in the AFC East and talk of the first all New York Super Bowl, had all the pundits out and cheering the Brett Favre sensation, risen from the frozen tundra in Green Bay, to lead Gang Green to the promised land.
Not so fast my lads, this the New York Jets were talking about. The same team that was 10-1 and lost the last five games, the same team that was field goal away from a Super Bowl appearance a few years back and for the last 40 years has been a team of broken promises and broken dreams.
We all knew what happened until today. They lost three out of the next four and should have lost all four except for a "mini miracle" in the Meadowlands, but still going into today had an outside chance of making the playoffs. Even with that, for those who know the game a win against Miami would be a plus-six wins from last year and something that a team can really build upon. But no, these were the same old Jets. Knowing at the start of the game the Pats had already won that they would have to watch the scoreboard for some help in Baltimore and when the Jaguars went up 7-3 against the Ravens at the end of the first quarter the stands were alive and so were the Jets.
Even going into the third quarter down 14 - 9 and despite the mistakes that would eventually seal their doom, the Jets took the lead 17 - 14 at the 10 minute mark of the third quarter. I started to think that the Jets would win and the Ravens would as well, and I would look back on this season as one of the better comebacks from a bad year to a good one in their history. I was then convinced that I could write a positive sounding article and although I knew I would take some heat on that point. I was still going to say the Jets had a great year and if Favre's shoulder could be dealt with then I believed he should be brought back for 2009.
So just to spoil my day and about at least a few million of us out there, the wheels came flying off. Miami scored the last 10 unanswered points and knock us as well as the Pats out of the playoffs and created an even better story for Chad (I redeemed myself) Pennington as he took a Miami team who won one game last year and allowed them, not the Jets to the playoff right in his old back yard. How fitting.
If you look at the final stats they were pretty even except for one glaring and telling stat that spells out the finish to the Jets season. Four turnovers, yes four including three interceptions from the legacy quarterback who looked as bad as any third string quarterback I have ever seen in the last five games. Besides leading the league in INT's, (not the first time in his career ), Favre showed why a 40-year-old is not an exceptional quarterbacks in the NFL over a grueling 16-game season. Goodbye, Brett, it's time to go. Goodbye, Eric, it's time to go. Goodbye, both offense and defensive coordinators, it's time to go.
Final thoughts. A five-game turnaround in one year is a good season. What Miami and Atlanta accomplished is a great season. What the Philadelphia Eagles accomplished is a good season. Same thoughts for Minnesota, Arizona, The Giants, Ravens, Steelers Colts, Titans, Chargers, and Carolina. You all made the Big Dance and deserve to be there. For The Jets, it's on to 2009, hopefully with more changes on and off the playing field and on the sidelines.
Despite this again, I remain a loyal fan, not a bandwagon jumper who loves us at 8-3 then hates us at 9-7. You all know what they say is true in the NFL, "ANY GIVEN SUNDAY".
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