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Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Jets Ground and Pound, Nowhere to Be Found

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Sunday night’s poor rushing performance against Dallas was not the least bit pleasing to New York’s head man Rex Ryan. 45 yards on 16 carries, Gang Green’s lowest run production during Ryan’s tenure as coach has the team searching for answers.

Some may credit Dallas defensive coordinator Rob Ryan’s commitment to stymieing the Jets run game, by stacking the line of scrimmage; while others attribute poor offensive line play as the culprit for a dismal rushing output. Whatever the case may be, New York wants to reclaim their ground and pound identity and for tailbacks Shonn Greene and LaDanian Tomlinson that task begins this Sunday when the Jets play host to Jacksonville. In Week one, the Jaguars rushing defense held the league’s most prolific back, Chris Johnson of the Tennessee Titans, to a mere 24 yards on 9 carries.

If the Jets are going to rebound from a disappointing ground game opening night, they will have to do it against a Jaguars defense that perennially ranks amongst the NFL’s top run defenses. Questions remain whether third year
rusher Shonn Greene is ready to become New York’s feature back, with LaDanian Tomlinson utilized as a third down back and a sure-handed receiving option for quarterback Mark Sanchez. While Greene has shown to be an electrifying and punishing ball carrier for the Jets the past two postseasons; his durability and stamina have yet to be tested as a starter through the grinds and rigors of a 16 game regular season.

Rex Ryan and his Jets are hopeful that Week One was an aberration and the Jets will revert to their dominant run heavy schemes that helped them clinch two consecutive AFC title berths. For one thing, Ryan is relieved he won’t have to square off with his brother Rob again in the regular season, but didn’t dismiss the possibility of the two matching up again come February’s big game.

“As much as I love him {brother, Rob Ryan}, I always want to beat him and that's it,” declared Rex Ryan. "We played far from a perfect game. Not even close. That's an excellent football team. I'll sign up right now to play them in the Super Bowl."
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