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Sam Darnold and Jets offense did their job

Sam Darnold #14 of the New York Jets

Sam Darnold #14 of the New York Jets looks for a teammate during a game against the Green Bay Packers at MetLife Stadium on Sunday, Dec. 23, 2018 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. Credit: Jim McIsaac

OFFENSE: Sam Darnold threw for a career-high 341 yards and three touchdowns without an interception. It was just his second three-TD game. The Jets scored four offensive touchdowns, matching their season high. They had no trouble moving the ball against the Packers for most of the game, and Darnold would like to have a few throws back. He had a Deontay Burnett open for a touchdown that could have won the game in regulation, but Darnold overthrew him. The Jets also couldn’t come up with long sustained drives in the fourth quarter when they absolutely needed them. But the offense wasn’t the reason the Jets lost this game.


DEFENSE: The Jets blamed the officials, and there were some questionable calls. But the Packers rung up 540 yards of offense, had 35 first downs and they scored 24 points over the last 15:22 of the game. Up 15 heading to the fourth against a team that hasn’t won on the road, you have to find a way to shut the door. The Jets couldn’t, and they committed costly penalties at crucial times - again. The lack of discipline and composure was evident early in the game when Leonard Williams was whistled for unnecessary roughness and ejected for throwing a punch at Bryan Bulaga. There were numerous pass interference penalties that killed the Jets also. And you can’t blame the officials for the busted coverage that led to a 49-yard TD pass from Aaron Rodgers to Jake Kumerow for Green Bay’s first score.


SPECIAL TEAMS: It didn’t start well. Pro Bowler Jason Myers missed a field goal on the opening drive. Brant Boyer’s unit also committed a couple of bad penalties, an unnecessary roughness on Trenton Cannon and illegal block on Anthony Wint that negated a long Andre Roberts’ return. But Roberts, the AFC Pro Bowl return specialist, broke free for a 99-yard kickoff return for a TD. He had a 51-yard return late in regulation when the Jets had a chance to go in for the game-winning touchdown. They settled for a Myers’ tying field goal. Wint forced a fumble that the Jets recovered. Myers’ made a tackle that could have prevented a kickoff return touchdown for Green Bay. Rontez Miles converted a fake punt into a first down.


COACHING: Todd Bowles was as angry as he’s been as the Jets coach after the game, believing the referees stole the game from his team. He’s always good at sticking up for his players. But they needed to make a few more plays, especially on defense. The offense was clicking. But the play-calling on the drive in regulation when the Jets could have put the game away wasn’t good. The Jets were aggressive and then became too conservative. They also showed a lack of discipline – again. The Jets had 172 yards of penalties.


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