Written By: Kenny Mauss

After opening the season with wins against Houston, New England, and Tennessee (all 3 teams were extremely trendy picks to reach the postseason) expectations went through the roof for the rookie QB led New York Jets. Mark “Sanchize” was prematurely anointed the savior of New York, and the quarterback the Jets haven’t had since Joe Namath. The Jets finally came back to earth Week 4, and were stomped on in the Bayou by eventual Super Bowl Champion New Orleans. That loss was coupled with 5 other, with there only win in that 7 game span coming in Oakland against the lowly Raiders. At 4-6, the Jets fans were back to there usually pessimistic state, and little was expected from the for the rest of the way. In a season filled of streaks, the Jets followed suit and won the next 3 games, leaving them at 7-6 heading into Week 15, right into the middle of the extremely crowded AFC wild-card race. That’s where this Jets season became down right nutty…//

Needing a win against the Atlanta Falcons, whom were eliminated from playoff contention with a Dallas win over New Orleans the previous night seemingly had nothing to play for, but the Jets played like there season was over as well. Trailing 7-3 late in the 4th quarter, Matt Ryan was able to find Tony Gonzalez for a game winning 6-yard touchdown with only 1:38 remaining. The Jets were unable to mount the comeback, and fell to 7-7 leaving Rex Ryan and all of New York to sit and wonder if they had just given there season away by playing zone coverage on Tony Gonzalez allowing him to get open for the game winning score.

While Rex Ryan thought his team had been eliminated, what would happen over 3,000 miles away in Oakland saved the New York season. Oakland upset the Denver Broncos and it put the Jets in a win and your in situation for the playoffs. However, they needed to defeat the then undefeated Colts and AFC North Champion Cincinnati Bengals. Peyton Manning was pulled by Coach Caldwell midway thru the 3rd quarter, obliging to Rex Ryan’s Christmas wishes, and the Jets were able to upset the Colts and put them in position for a postseason berth with a win over Cincinnati, who like Indianapolis had nothing to play for. New York was able to run all over the Bengals in prime time Week 17, and clinched a date with the Bengals only 6 days later on the banks of the Ohio River at Paul Brown Stadium.

The Jets were able to defeat the Bengals for a 2nd straight time led by two rookies, Mark Sanchez and Iowa running back Shonn Greene. While many “experts” and fans alike thought it was possible for the Jets to defeat the Bengals, not many thought they would be able to defeat San Diego the following week. Led by the defense and a running game that produced an extremely effective 169 yards on 39 carries (good for a  4.3 ypc) the Jets were able to eat the clock much of the 2nd half and take advantage of a couple costly mistakes made by QB Philip Rivers on there way to a divisional round upset of the San Diego Chargers. While the season ended the next week in the AFC championship, to the Super Bowl runner-up Colts, this can be seen as a great season by the New York Jets. Led by a rookie head coach, rookie QB, and stellar defense the Jets were able to fight there way into the playoffs and prove they belonged by winning 2 games once they arrived. The Jets will be better in all aspects of the game next season and could be in prime position to take the reigns from New England as the power of the AFC East. The future is bright for the Jets, and expect the “Sanchize” led New York Jets to be competitive for many years to come.