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Why Jets’ Sam Darnold’s return is bad news for Adam Gase


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Why Jets’ Sam Darnold’s return is bad news for Adam Gase

Updated 7:17 AM; Today 6:52 AM 

 

 
 
 

Sam Darnold is back. That’s great news for him.

It’s (potentially) terrible for Adam Gase.

For the past three weeks, Gase has been shielded by the fact that his offense has been operating without a legitimate leader. With all due respect to Luke Falk, there’s a reason he started this season on the practice squad; he may someday become a solid NFL quarterback, but he’s still in the developmental stage right now.

Falk’s presence at quarterback has muddied the waters. His clear inability to function at the necessary NFL level made it impossible to know where the quarterback’s failings ended and the rest of the offense’s errors began.

But let’s be clear: There’s more wrong with this offense than just the quarterback position.

“We took our turns (making mistakes),” Gase said, referencing his team’s Sunday loss to the Eagles. “Whether it was the quarterback not getting the ball out on time, we busted the route, the O-line not using the protection the right way, there were a couple of calls where there’s no one open.”

Right there, Gase admitted it. The offensive line has failed. The wide receivers have failed. Gase has failed, too.

In fact, Gase’s missteps have gone beyond just play calling. Apparently, according to running back Le’Veon Bell, this offense is struggling to even nail down the basics of where to line up and how to run any given play.

It’s also obvious that this offense has been entirely too predictable and conservative; roughly two-thirds of first-down plays have been handoffs to Bell, which makes it awfully easy for opposing defenses to get ahead of the sticks.

But up until this Sunday, Falk – and for two quarters, Trevor Siemian – had a hand in all those problems, too.

Falk made his offensive line look worse with his poor decision making. Same goes for the wideouts. A strong, clear communicator in the huddle and at the line of scrimmage could have masked some of the pre-snap confusion. And lack of trust in the man under center made it easy to default to the All-Pro running back standing behind him.

Darnold, in a perfect world, should help remedy all of those areas – at least to some degree. He’s unlikely to stand flat-footed in the pocket past a play’s expiration. He knows how to check in and out of plays to aid his offensive line. He’s capable of making a big play early in a series.

But odds are that Darnold still won’t be a cure-all; that’s a lot to put on a 22-year-old with just 14 NFL games under his belt.

The space between what Darnold fixes and an acceptable – let alone dominant or explosive – offensive performance will fall on Gase.

In other words, now that Darnold is back – not to mention tight end Chris Herndon – we’ll finally learn just how much of these struggles have been the result of coaching, rather than talent.

Gase was brought in by acting owner Christopher Johnson to be “a young, creative mind” and an “innovator" on the offensive side of the ball. So far, he’s been bland and has failed to drill down the all-too-important details with his players.

Up until now, he’s had a get-out-of-jail-free card. Now, with Darnold gone, so too is that political cover.

At this point, Gase is 23-29 as an NFL head coach. Bad luck or not, that doesn’t inspire confidence. Neither do the finer points of what he’s produced with the Jets so far.

Yes, the offensive line has been brutal – and as of Week 5, the starting five was one that Gase selected, rather than one thrust upon him by ex-GM Mike Maccagnan. Yet, the unit had its worst performance to date.

Sure, the signal caller hasn’t been up to snuff, but that’s no real excuse for the 10 other players not knowing their assignments.

Of course it’s tempting to keep handing the ball to Bell, especially when the alternative is letting a subpar second-yer, third-string quarterback sling it around. But failing to be creative – up until a trick play while trailing 24-0 against the Eagles – and dial up a few outside-the-box play calls is weak. The Jets clearly entered the last few games well behind the 8-ball. So why not take a risk? What did Gase have to lose?

None of that screams “mastermind," as Bell dubbed Gase during training camp.

Here’s the thing: It would have been fine for the Jets to lose three straight games without Darnold. Remember, this team just played the two most recent Super Bowl champions. Losing those battles would have been acceptable – if Darnold’s absence had clearly been the overriding reason for each defeat.

All of these other factors point to deeper, systemic issues instead.

Perhaps it really will be as simple as plugging Darnold back into the offense for this unit to find its footing. After all, quarterback is quite clearly the most important position in all of sports. Maybe the guru just needs his protege for this grand experiment to function.

But, if the results don’t start to change come Sunday, it’ll finally be fair to wonder whether Johnson was sold a bill of goods.


 


By the sounds of it, Gase knows that, too.

“The defense is playing good, special teams is playing good," Gase said. “We all know what group needs to play better. That’s on me.”

 

 

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If we look like total unprepared crap on Sunday, we'll have a dozen excuse-threads on why Gase (and Darnold) aren't to blame, aren't be be evaluated, aren't to be judged because it'll be everyone else's fault but theirs no matter how bad a job they do. 

Same as always.

 

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25 minutes ago, Warfish said:

If we look like total unprepared crap on Sunday, we'll have a dozen excuse-threads on why Gase (and Darnold) aren't to blame, aren't be be evaluated, aren't to be judged because it'll be everyone else's fault but theirs no matter how bad a job they do. 

Same as always.

 

Hahahahahaha.  So true.  Gase and Darnold can do no wrong.

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7 minutes ago, Joe W. Namath said:

Hahahahahaha.  So true.  Gase and Darnold can do no wrong.

It's not specific to them. 

To a meaningful portion of our fanbase, ANY Jets "young QB prospect" and ANY "Jets Head Coach In Years 1-3" can do no wrong.

It's only after they're fired or cut that these homers pretend they knew all along the QB or Coach weren't the guy.  

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32 minutes ago, slats said:

The Jets roster is still terrible even with a healthy Sam Darnold. The hope here is that Sam makes them suck less, and Adam Gase manages to grow a set with an NFL caliber QB under center for the first time in a month. 

Gase's job the rest of the way is keeping the team together and playing hard. His job isn't on the line unless and until the team completely gives up on him. 

This.  

This year was never about making the playoffs as much as it was seeing what we got and prepping Sammy.

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11 minutes ago, T0mShane said:

This is a magma-hot lazer-hot take that getting the starting QB back is “bad news” for the head coach. If you found this article compelling, ask yourself why you want the Jets to lose and for Gase to fail. It’s not because you want a different coach—the imaginary coach in your head isn’t coming here. It’s because the Jets are terrible and you simply want one guy to blame for it, and Gase is that next man up. Open a window and get some air.

+100 Can't fathom how anyone can have a problem with Gase if we are winning. That is just trolling, stupidity, foolishness or a combination thereof. I don't give a f**k who the coach is if we are winning and neither should anyone else. If you do, you are a doosh.

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29 minutes ago, T0mShane said:

This is a magma-hot lazer-hot take that getting the starting QB back is “bad news” for the head coach. If you found this article compelling, ask yourself why you want the Jets to lose and for Gase to fail. It’s not because you want a different coach—the imaginary coach in your head isn’t coming here. It’s because the Jets are terrible and you simply want one guy to blame for it, and Gase is that next man up. Open a window and get some air.

Yeah dumbest article premise I've seen in awhile and I keep a copy of Mehta's Jamal Adams/Michael Jordan new BFFs article pinned to the ceiling over my bed.

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Bad article?  It's 100% correct.

The same people bleating that it is a bad article are probably the ones lamenting gases poor lot in life for having to deal with a 3rd string QB.  (Events in the league have shattered that notion 100% imo but hey cling to what you can cling to.)

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2 hours ago, T0mShane said:

This is a magma-hot lazer-hot take that getting the starting QB back is “bad news” for the head coach. If you found this article compelling, ask yourself why you want the Jets to lose and for Gase to fail. It’s not because you want a different coach—the imaginary coach in your head isn’t coming here. It’s because the Jets are terrible and you simply want one guy to blame for it, and Gase is that next man up. Open a window and get some air.

No one not a single fan here wants to loose, we want to compete and try to win look like an actual football team  on the field. For the offense that has yet to happen, if we did not care we would not post. 

That is not hating or rooting for a team to lose, that is pointing out faults and blame without excuses.

it is Gase's fault the team has looked like crap, he has made choices and play calls that led the team to this point, it was not the special teams or defensive coaches. 

And if I had my Choice of imaginary coach it would be Walt Michaels

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2 hours ago, T0mShane said:

If you found this article compelling, ask yourself why you want the Jets to lose and for Gase to fail.

I want every Jets Coach to succeed.  Root the laundry.

But I do not believe that Adam Gase will succeed.  I did not belivee it before he was hired.  And I do not believe it now, after 4 games. 

As such, my preference would be to see the minimal amount of time wasted on a guy who will not succeed, and likely require yet another "full rebuild" be done after he is gone on to his next job.  Especially with the clock ticking on Darnold's development and rookie low-cost contract.

I believe the Gase resume, which boils down to "one great year milking Peyton Manning + a bunch of bottom 10 and bottom 5 offenses as a Head Coach" is who Gase really is.  A guy who lucked into a great situation with HOF'er Manning, and has ridden that one year of great success for years after with nothing of real note since, success wise, to hang his hat on.

I don't want him to fail.  But I believe he WILL fail regardless of what I want.

As such, the question is how long will we have to fail before we make the inevitable change and try again?  I'd prefer that be as short as possible.  If you believe Gase is, in fact, a future Super Bowl winning Head Coach, then obviously you will disagree with me.  I just wonder what it is you see that makes you believe Gase is a future Super Bowl winning Head Coach....

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3 hours ago, The Crusher said:

Adam Gase needs to let Sam Darnold either win or lose this game period.  Let him run around like his hair is on fire and make plays. Roll him out and let the kid try and extend plays. Sam Darnold shouldn’t be forced to work out of a pocket that simply isn’t there. 

Nor should be be forced to throw 8,000 screen passes behind the line of scrimmage 

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I'm going to play devil's advocate here.  Has anyone looked at this from the opposite side?  Instead of discussing whether Gase should be fired or not, maybe wondering why he hasn't quit this sh*tshow already?

He's lost his QB1, QB2, WR2, TE1, OLB2, ILB1, suffered through Macc not getting a Kicker or adequately fixing the OLine.  All of this is in addition to the KNOWN problems heading into the season of not having good CBs or a true Edge rusher to begin with.  So.....now he's getting grief for losing to teams that are a collective 14-6 so far.

This kinda seems like blaming Captain Sully for crash landing in the Hudson River.  How come he couldn't just go back to the airport?  I mean, if he was a decent pilot he could work with what he had, right?

 

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20 minutes ago, DJF71 said:

Healthy except Mosley and now our starting TE.

 

14 minutes ago, Joe W. Namath said:

At week 6 that is healthy.

 

True, although we seem to forget a few guys because they've been out a while....Avery Williamson, Trevor Siemian, Quincy Enunwa, and now Osemele.

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36 minutes ago, jetstream23 said:

I'm going to play devil's advocate here.  Has anyone looked at this from the opposite side?  Instead of discussing whether Gase should be fired or not, maybe wondering why he hasn't quit this sh*tshow already?

He's lost his QB1, QB2, WR2, TE1, OLB2, ILB1, suffered through Macc not getting a Kicker or adequately fixing the OLine.  All of this is in addition to the KNOWN problems heading into the season of not having good CBs or a true Edge rusher to begin with.  So.....now he's getting grief for losing to teams that are a collective 14-6 so far.

This kinda seems like blaming Captain Sully for crash landing in the Hudson River.  How come he couldn't just go back to the airport?  I mean, if he was a decent pilot he could work with what he had, right?

 

I don't how they stomach it even when they are winning different breed like a brain surgeon or fighter pilot. Obviously a different task, they have to be great delegators and be able to compartmentalize.

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35 minutes ago, Welp said:

"I don't want him to fail but I believe he will fail"

Sounds like a very Jetsy fan type dogmatism

Not really.

I wanted ***** to succeed as President too.  But I also knew he was a crazy unqualified ***** and probably wouldn't.

We all hope for the best.  Not all of us a conflate that hope with expectation.

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3 minutes ago, Warfish said:

Not really.

I wanted ***** to succeed as President too.  But I also knew he was a crazy unqualified ***** and probably wouldn't.

We all hope for the best.  Not all of us a conflate that hope with expectation.

You look at it one way, others look at it another. That's what makes our world go round.

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