New York Jets vs. Indianapolis Colts. Special Teams The Key?
Added by Gregg Snyder on January 7, 2011.
Article By: Mike Mitolo
It’s been talked about and analyzed all week.
“The Jets need to win the game on offense to beat the Colts this Saturday night”, a point which has been beaten to death like the proverbial… Colt?
O.K., I do agree with most of what’s been said. Mark Sanchez will be able to move the ball on the Colts secondary, and with 2 rested running backs, New York should have success with the ground game.
However, something that hasn’t really been talked about is special teams play.
With the challenge of facing, arguably, the most prolific passer in NFL history, every advantage needs to be maximized.
With Indy’s special teams being the 2nd worst in the league, there are spots the Jets can exploit.
Lets look at the some of them:
Punting… Advantage Jets
Steve Weatherford has been doing a Feagle’s like job, it’s imperative he gives Peyton Manning the longest field possible to work with.
Yes I know, he can go 90 yards in 3 throws, but if anybody’s noticed lately, those drives have been halted with interceptions.
Kick Return Game… Advantage Jets
Brad Smith, the Jack of All Trades, has amassed 1,432 return yards for the season compared to Justin Tryon’s 299 yards.
Punt Return Game… Advantage Jets
Compare Gang Green’s top 3 return men (415 return yards combined) to the Colts top 3 (179 yards).
Coaching… Advantage Jets
Mike Westhoff, the best in the business and for a long time now.
Obviously the clear advantage on the Colts side is Adam Vinatieri, with 26 out of 28 field goals made this year (92.9% FG percentage). Mr. Clutch is solid as always.
This game cannot come down to Nick Folk, who is known to buckle under pressure.
If Gang Green can get a TD from special teams, win the turnover battle and combine it all with a scoring offense, they can be half way to New England.
And please Jet fans remember one thing.
The defense played Brian Brohm and a 4-12 Bills team last week. The Jets defense needs to keep it together and play a near perfect game.
If we see Bart Scott trying to cover Tight End, Jacob Tamme, the golf season in the Tri-State will start Sunday.