Dolphins vs. Jets: Clock Ticking for New York's Season but Tebow Time Not Coming

Erik Frenz@ErikFrenzSenior Writer IOctober 28, 2012

FOXBORO, MA - OCTOBER 21:  Tim Tebow #15 of the New York Jets leaves the field after a 29-26 loss to the New England Patriots at Gillette Stadium on October 21, 2012 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images)
Jim Rogash/Getty Images

The New York Jets, down 30-9 with under two minutes to go in the fourth quarter, sent embattled quarterback Mark Sanchez out onto the field.

And with that, they responded to their quarterback controversy—or lack thereof—and their awful offense as a whole in much the same way Lieutenant Frank Drebin responds to explosions and disaster.

Even if a change at quarterback were the fix-all for the Jets struggles, it wouldn't matter: The Jets have already made it clear that they will not make that change.

Rex says Sanchez will be starting quarterback moving forward. No QB change coming at bye

— Manish Mehta(@MMehtaNYDN) October 28, 2012

It's safe to say that a change at quarterback would not be the fix-all for the Jets.

Weren't they getting better despite losing? They went 1-3 in the previous four games leading into Sunday's matchup against the Miami Dolphins, but they had come so far since a 34-0 drubbing at home at the hands of the San Francisco 49ers.

After taking several steps forward, they shot themselves in the foot at every turn in all three phases of the game.

A red-zone interception, a blocked punt, a blocked field goal and several big plays in the passing game were just the biggest lowlights of the day, but there were plenty of them all around.

Despite barely making it over the 50-percent mark for completions on the day, Mark Sanchez reverted to the form of his four-game sub-50-percent streak. His final stat line for the day, 28-for-54, does not fully indicate just how ugly it was, nor does it indicate that it seemed to get uglier as the game went on.

A third-quarter interception of Sanchez in the red zone by Dolphins safety Chris Clemons brought forth some of those dreaded chants for the backup.

The struggles weren't all on Sanchez, with the offensive line missing several assignments on blitzes and giving up three sacks in the first half alone and four times on the day. The running game didn't move the ball well in the first 30 minutes of regulation either.

They didn't get much help from the special teams unit, which had a punt blocked and recovered for a touchdown with a field goal blocked before halftime, the first of which was the result of a bad block by none other than Tebow himself.

The box score may say that the Jets outgained the Dolphins and had more first downs and more time of possession, but that doesn't tell the story of an offense that stalled out several times early and put the pressure on the defense to get stops every time.

The offense finally put things together in the second half, but as has been the case for the Jets this season and last season, the inconsistency was their undoing.

As it has been for much of the season, the offense is the group that will be under the most scrutiny, and deservedly so. When the punter boots it six times, as Jets punter Robert Malone did on Sunday, there are problems. When the offense gains 4.6 yards per play, with more yards per run (5 YPA) than yards per pass (4.4 YPA), there are problems. 

When the quarterback throws the ball 54 times, there are problems, but falling behind by 20 points in the first half is a problem in and of itself. The former may have been influenced by the latter.

Once again, these problems must also be redirected to the architect, general manager Mike Tannenbaum. The players are the ones who are struggling to make plays, but the players are in this position because they've been chosen for it, and have agreed to it.

The question now is, will anything fix these ails?

Probably not, and the same would go for Tebow, even if the coaching staff was willing to make the change.

The Jets are not statistically out of the playoffs yet, but unless they magically find a level of consistency they have not yet seen this season, they might as well be. In that sense, perhaps it couldn't hurt to give Tebow a chance, but if that happens, the expectations for him, and the rest of the Jets offense, should be zero.

Erik Frenz is the AFC East lead blogger for Bleacher Report. Be sure to follow Erik on Twitter and "like" the AFC East blog on Facebook to keep up with all the updates. Unless specified otherwise, all quotes are obtained firsthand.


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