Jets' grades: Above average effort all around

Jets running back Bilal Powell runs while being

Jets running back Bilal Powell runs while being pursued by Jacksonville Jaguars outside linebacker Julian Stanford during the second half. (Dec. 9, 2012) (Credit: AP)

OFFENSE B Mark Sanchez protected the football and his running game did the rest. Shonn Greene tied his career high with his sixth rushing touchdown of the season and Bilal Powell set career highs for attempts (19) and rushing yards (78) and ran for a TD early in the fourth quarter. The Jets totaled 166 rushing yards, marking the fourth consecutive game they've rushed for more than 115 yards. Unfortunately, the offense didn't crack the Jaguars' beleaguered defense until the second half.

 

DEFENSE A-True, the Jaguars dropped a lot of passes. But give Rex Ryan's group credit. The unit has given up only one touchdown in two games -- a 32-yard fourth-quarter score by Jaguars running back Montell Owens -- and limited Jacksonville to two third-down conversions in 16 attempts after shutting out the Cardinals (0-for-15) on third downs last week. Thanks to Garrett McIntyre's hard hit on quarterback Chad Henne, Bart Scott intercepted his first pass since 2006, and Muhammad Wilkerson (10 tackles), David Harris (10 tackles) and Quinton Coples each had a sack. Ellis Lankster closed it out by intercepting Henne.

 

SPECIAL TEAMS B It was a decent day for coordinator Mike Westhoff. Nick Folk, who missed two field goals last week against Arizona, made his only field-goal attempt (a 44-yarder) and the coverage team didn't have any significant breakdowns. Jaguars' Richard Murphy came within a whisker of blocking a Jets punt in the third quarter, but Robert Malone got it off in time.

 

COACHING B- Regardless of who you thought should've been the starter, Ryan's decision to deactivate Greg McElroy and activate a less-than-healthy Tim Tebow was puzzling. Luckily for the coach, Sanchez never got hurt. Also troubling was the Jets' game management at the end of the first half. They went conservative with 1:49 on the clock, calling three run plays up the middle that yielded 5 yards. The drive left the Jaguars with 12 seconds, resulting in Jags kicker Josh Scobee missing a field goal from 55 yards. But give offensive coordinator Tony Sparano credit for trusting Sanchez to air out a third-down pass to Jeff Cumberland with 2:56 remaining, resulting in a 37-yard gain to midfield.

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