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Cosell Talks: You’re Seeing the Real Mark Sanchez


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Apparently, we'll still be in trouble even after Schotty is replaced by a more competent O coordinator.

http://nflfilms.nfl....l-mark-sanchez/

by Greg Cosell

No one should be surprised by the relative poor play of Mark Sanchez, certainly not Rex Ryan and the Jets. Ryan knew what he was getting when he traded up to draft Sanchez in 2009. He was looking for a complementary quarterback that would fit his world view of championship NFL football: Run the ball with power and efficiency, and dominate with a turnover-based defense. The quarterback was a puzzle piece, a role player more than a foundation.

That’s what Ryan got with Sanchez: A limited passer with above average arm strength who was at his best in a timing-and-rhythm pass game in which the ball could come out quickly to the primary read. If the Jets could stay ahead of the down, and play in manageable down and distance situations, then Sanchez could function effectively.

In 2009, Sanchez rookie year, the Jets led the NFL in rushing attempts and yards. Defensively, they allowed both the fewest yards and the fewest points. This was football the way Ryan envisioned it.

The Jets, despite Sanchez’s low completion percentage and AFC-high 20 interceptions, made the playoffs. In fact, they won 2 postseason games. In those wins, Sanchez totaled less than 40 attempts. In a passing league, this clearly defied the accepted methodology.

The Jets ’09 run ended in the AFC Championship against Peyton Manning and the Colts, when Ryan’s defense could not hold up in the second half after leading 17-13 at halftime. Lost in Manning’s brilliant performance that day was the fact the Jets did not score in the final 2 quarters.

In 2010, the Jets’ team profile remained essentially the same. They were second in the NFL in both rushing attempts and yards. Defensively, they were not quite as strong statistically, but the basic template was still in place. Sanchez was slightly more efficient, and he limited his interceptions to 13. But he was still a component piece, nothing more. He won a few games in the fourth quarter, which elevated his public perception, but that did not alter Ryan’s fundamental philosophy nor meaningfully change Sanchez’s limitations as a passer.

The 2010 playoffs mirrored those of 2009. Sanchez threw for less than 200 yards against the Colts in the Wild Card game, as the Jets ran for 169 yards and held Manning to 54 offensive plays and 16 points. Then followed the big Divisional Playoff win against New England: 25 passes for Sanchez and less than 200 yards. A bad start in the AFC Championship doomed a Jets team not built to rally from a large deficit: after falling behind the Steelers 24-0 in the first half, New York could not come back.

What’s happened in 2011? The twin foundations of the team have not performed at the necessary levels: the Jets rank 22nd in rushing, averaging only 104 yards per game. The defensive deterioration has been just as striking: in points allowed, they also rank 22nd. These failings have placed the burden on Sanchez to suddenly be something he was not ever expected to be: a lead quarterback who is the focal point of the offense. Sanchez was not drafted to play that role, and he’s not capable of it.

So make no mistake, the Jets struggles are not merely surprisingly poor play. They stem from the very heart of the team and how it’s seen itself during the 3 years of the Ryan era. Nothing significant about Mark Sanchez has changed. It’s the rest of the team that has changed. That’s what has magnified their quarterback’s limitations.

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Sanchez improved 09-> 10, improved 10-> 11. That was a pitiful game on his part last week. But let's keep it going Mark, keep up with the progression. You had a better 3rd year than Eli Manning did, so I'm excited to see what you will bring in year 4, hopefully with a new RT to help you out.

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by Greg Cosell

"If the Jets could stay ahead of the down, and play in manageable down and distance situations, then Sanchez would be better."

Wow Greg, so in other words, if Sanchez isn't constantly facing third and long situations, he would do better. Wow Greg, what an insight. Aside from the fact that the same holds true for every other quarterback in the history of the game, your deep understanding of football has enlightened me. I'm sure that's why you got your cushy job with NFL films. I'm sure that Howard Cosell being your Uncle had nothing to o with it.

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Funny, I see Mark Sanchez improving this season compared to last, albeit slowly. The reason for this is the O-line. This season was a waste with this sewage treatment plant o-line. Mark made big improvements cutting down the bad interceptions this season, but being under constant pressure killed him this season. Nobody would look good with the protection he was afforded this year.

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Sanchez improved 09-> 10, improved 10-> 11. That was a pitiful game on his part last week. But let's keep it going Mark, keep up with the progression. You had a better 3rd year than Eli Manning did, so I'm excited to see what you will bring in year 4, hopefully with a new RT to help you out.

Kind of apple and oranges. The 2006 Giants were affected by injuries more so than the Jets.

I agree Mark is getting better. It might be slower than you hoped and maybe he will not be as great as you originally dreamed of, but he is getting better.

For the record, Eli won the Superbowl in his 4th season...the bar has been set.

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Well, Eli won a Super Bowl in his 4Th year (and Super Bowl MVP). Is Sanchez ready to take that step? I am not so sure.

Well that's obviously a very artificial standard to set, but there's really nothing improbable about that.

I'm pretty sure that he has as many playoff wins over 2009 and 2010 seasons as ANY QB in the entire league, possibly 1 behind Rodgers, but either way... that's really impressive (especially consider it was year 1 and 2).

You cannot compare Eli and Sanchez. Eli is clearly a more natural, talented QB.

Naturally? He sure didn't distinguish himself from Sanchez in his first 3 years.

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Wow Greg, so in other words, if Sanchez isn't constantly facing third and long situations, he would do better. Wow Greg, what an insight. Aside from the fact that the same holds true for every other quarterback in the history of the game, your deep understanding of football has enlightened me. I'm sure that's why you got your cushy job with NFL films. I'm sure that Howard Cosell being your Uncle had nothing to o with it.

Did you know that quarterbacks perform worse if you pressure them?

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