Keeping with tradition, the Jets self-scouted during the bye week.
“It’s a good thing,” said Rex Ryan, who had his team do the same during last year's Week 9 bye. “Sometimes you can’t see the forest through the trees and this just gives you how an opponent will look at you. Opponents break films down differently, but you still get the meat and potatoes of what every opponent sees. …It just some things we think will be helpful: our offense, some tendencies that they have and the same thing with our defense.”
The bad news is: the process unveiled several weakness on both sides of the ball. The coach said he doesn’t think the Jets are close to reaching their potential.
“I think the group that’s there is probably the one we had the most questions about – and that’s special teams," Ryan said. "I think what we’re doing with our punting and our kicking and our returns is as good as there is. That’s probably the strength of our team right now – over the defense, over the offense. So we’re in pretty good shape there.
"I think offensively, just being more consistent, making the plays that are there. I think we’re doing a good job in pass protection, we’re running the ball, but I still think we can run it better. And I also think our passing game can really improve. I think that’s where you will see us make some strides. …We want to be better at converting third downs on offense and we have to get much better at stopping opponents on third down. We’ve talked about it all year but it’s time to take a bigger step.”
The Jets will have to make those adjustments quick with Green Bay coming to the New Meadowlands Stadium Sunday.
“One of the best offenses in football,” Ryan said. “But we’ll welcome that challenge. The people we have on defense, we don’t have any excuses. So just put the ball out there, whatever you want to do, we’ll see what happens.”
“They get a lot of sacks,” he added. “That Clay Matthews kid is at 8.5 and he’s missing games, so he’s a tremendous athlete and all that kind of stuff. …Sacks are a big part of the game but it doesn’t tell the whole picture. They do a great job of rushing the passer.
"[Packers defensive coordinator] Dom Capers does a great job as a coach. He has a great reputation for being one of the best defensive coaches in the game. We know they’re going to be well prepared, but so will we. It’s going to be a great matchup cause I think we can protect the quarterback as well as any team in the league.”
But when asked how much attention the Jets will need to pay to Matthews because “he never tires,” Ryan replied flippantly: “That’s OK. Our guys don’t either, so that’s good. It’s going to be a big challenge for Damien Woody cause he has to chase him all over the place. …Woody’s a great football player, so let’s see those two go at it.”