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200 Miles From the Citi


November 23, 2009 7:39 AM

PATRIOTS 31, JETS 14

I'm willing to give Mark Sanchez a lot of free passes this year.

He's a rookie quarterback.  It's not supposed to be a smooth ride for a rookie quarterback in the NFL.

3-0 is unusual.  1-6 is more common.

That said, Sanchez's recent performances have been frustrating to watch.


Welker_Week_11.JPGI'm not saying that the Jets should have beaten the Patriots on Sunday in Foxboro...but Sanchez took away any chance they had.

I can't imagine what Sanchez was seeing when he threw his four interceptions - they were all poorly thrown, and not in the vicinity of his receivers.

And then his late fumble cost the Jets a chance at a feel-good late score (and a back-door cover).

But if he learns from these mistakes, and learns how to throw the ball away when he has nothing, I'm willing to write this year off.  (I would have thought this lesson was learned after the Buffalo game, but I'll give him the fact that this game featured much different circumstances than that one.)

The defense, however, gets no such free pass.  It's unacceptable that Wes Welker killed them the way he did.

Sure, once or twice I can understand if he catches a short ball and turns it into a big gain - but 15 times?  For 192 yards?  Get somebody on him.

Like I said, the Jets winning this game was a long shot...this Patriots team was tremendously different from the one the Jets beat in Week 2.  Tom Brady is fully healthy.  His timing is right.  Neither was the case 2 months ago.

And the atmosphere was also incredibly different - a loud, friendly home crowd in Week 2 was a stark contrast to a crowd out for revenge for Week 2 as well as an embarrassed opponent coming off last week's loss to the Colts.

What bothers me, though, is that after the Jets got to within 10, they shot themselves in the foot and took away any chance they had of getting back in the game and possibly pulling out a win.

Next year when that happens I'll be spitting mad.

This year, I'll just pray that everyone learns from this year and it doesn't happen next year.

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