After talking about making New Meadowlands Stadium one of the NFL's toughest venues for the opposition, the Jets were the ones who turned in a frighteningly horrific performance.
Not the Packers.
"Mama said there’d always be days like this," running back LaDainian Tomlinson said. "We don’t like to have those days, but sometimes it’s going to happen. This is definitely embarrassing, not to put any points on the scoreboard. The credit goes to them. They were well-prepared. They did their job in getting us off the field, and we couldn’t score."
You can't score a single, solitary point? In your own stadium?
All the way around, yesterday's 9-0 eye-rubber was about as numbing as it gets for a team that loves to talk about playing in The Big Game in Big 'D' come February. Save for the defense, which played extremely well and kept Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers and that offense in check by surrendering three field goals, the Jets laid an egg.
And truthfully, things began unraveling in the first quarter when punter Steve Weatherford's brain froze and he tried that gutsy fake on fourth-and-18 in the shadows of the Jets' own goal line. But he didn't make it (initially he was ruled to have made the first down, but Packers coach Mike McCarthy challenged and won) and Green Bay ended up with the ball in Jets' territory and kicked a field goal to cap off a five-play, 34-yard drive and take a 3-0 lead.
"At the time, I knew it was third-and-9 when I went out there," Weatherford said, obviously unaware that it was actually fourth-and-18. "I didn’t see exactly how many yards we lost on the sack. Once I get out of the pocket, I feel like if it’s 12, 15 yards, I think I can make it. Like I said, I came up about a half-yard short."
Weatherford has the go-ahead to run fakes if he sees certain formations and he said he took off because the Packers gave him the same look they did earlier and he knew what to expect.
Ok, but did the coaches tell him to play it safe since it was fourth-and-18?
"No, it’s nothing like that at all. I watch film all week for formations that I feel would be good for that particular play," he said. "They had given me that look on the first punt of the game, they gave it to me again on the third. I thought it would be a good opportunity for us to get a big swing in the game. I came up a little bit short."
So what did special teams coordinator Mike Westhoff say to him afterward?
"He was disappointed we didn’t get it, obviously, but he’s never going to fault you for trying," Weatherford said. "He’s a legendary special teams coach and he’s taken risks in his career, too. Nine times out of ten for him they work out, but every once in a while, you’re going to come up short."
And that last statement perfectly sums up the Jets' lethargic performance yesterday. But they're supremely confident they'll bounce back from what they think is only a hiccup.
To me, though, it seemed more like a deep, nasty burp that would've made Booger from "Revenge of the Nerds" extremely proud. The stench was disgusting.
"With the kind of players we have and the coaching, this is definitely just a bump in the road," quarterback Mark Sanchez said. "It something we’ll be able to battle back from. It’s too bad because we got a great turnout from our fans. We came back fresh and ready to go. Rex gave us a long bye week. We got a chance to get home and see our families and we come back and have a poor performance on offense.
"There’s no excuse for it, but we know we can get better and the mistakes out there were physical today, not mental. Guys were running the right routes. I was throwing the ball to the right guy. I just need to be more accurate. We can correct physical mistakes and that’s a good thing."