EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - SEPTEMBER 18: Mark Sanchez #6 of the New York Jets looks for an open man during a game against the Jacksonville Jaguars at MetLife Stadium on September 18, 2011 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. (Photo by Jeff Zelevansky/Getty Images)
While simply looking at the box score and seeing that the New York Jets beat the Jacksonville Jaguars 32-3, you'd assume the team just got their face pushed in. They did, at least offensively. On the defensive side of the ball, the Jaguars defense actually was rather solid and held the Jets to under 300 total yards of offense. The Jets scored 32 points more so because the Jaguars turned the ball over 4 times and put the Jets in position to score points, more so than the Jets marching down the field.
On the opening drive of the game, the Jets moves right down the football field and scored on a touchdown pass from Mark Sanchez to Santonio Holmes. Sanchez was perfect on the drive and the Jets were able to run the football. Outside of that drive, the Jets had just a single scoring drive over 39 yards.
The Jaguars defense forced two turnovers and four 3-and-outs on the Jets offense. The pass rush still left a lot to be desired, but they were able to force Sanchez into some poor decisions and sacked him twice. Matt Roth netted his second sack in as many games and consistently was able to hurry Sanchez on passing downs, as well as make plays in the run game. The Jaguars defense held Shonn Greene to 49 yards rushing on 16 carriers and the Jets to just 101 total rushing yards with a 3.2 yard per carry average.
Second year defensive lineman Tyson Alualu had another good game. On one particular play, Alualu lined up at defensive end with Matt Roth at tackle and blew past Wayne Hunter off the snap. In just three steps, Alualu had Hunter looking like he was playing on ice and turned him right around as Alualu hit the quarterback. Jeremy Mincey was in the backfield a few times causing some disruption and Terrance Knighton and Leger Douzable made plays in the backfield from the tackle position.
Much maligned by fans, Rashean Mathis, had a nice outing that including an interception where he baited Sanchez into throwing his direction. William Middleton, filling in for the injured Derex Cox, also picked off Sanchez. It was a poor throw by Sanchez, but Middleton was still in position to make the easy play.
The defense kept the Jaguars in the game for a while, despite complete break downs offensively, but they could only do so for so long. It was 15-3 at the half with the Jaguars offense getting the ball in the third quarter, but when your offense does absolutely nothing but put the other team in scoring position, it's tough to hold back the other team.
While the team got trounced on the scoreboard 32-3, the defense actually played fairly well.