Elster's World

Monday, September 11, 2006

Drained

Note - New Storytellers post up from Anysara. The Storytellers link is on the right if you are interested.

What can you say after an opening day win like the New York Jets put together against the Titans this afternoon? I’m utterly drained. The game made me almost snap. Mercifully, I missed two of Mike Nugent’s missed filed goals or I might be writing this from the emergency room hooked up to a heart monitor. Or maybe I’d simply be on suicide watch.

Instead, the Jets managed to regain a lost lead and win 23-16 in a game that I’m not sure how to describe. This game contained a little bit of everything. The Jets dominated the first half yet somehow managed to squander a 16 point lead – due in most part to Nugent’s 2 missed very make-able fg’s and his missed point after (that’s 7 points given back to the Titans for all of you scoring at home). I ran the absolute gamut of emotions. From pleasant surprise, to cruise control, to upset, to panicking, to elation, to some serious fingernail biting back to elation. I think I need Prozac.

On a more heartwarming and happy note, the game also marked the triumphant return of quarterback Chad Pennington, who bounced back after two years of shoulder surgery to go 24 of 32 for 319 yards, two touchdowns and no interceptions. A healthy and effective Pennington is probably the most important factor in saving this season for the Jets. He looked really good running the no huddle – making good throws and controlling the clock despite an ineffective running game. If Pennington can stay healthy and find his old form, the Jets suddenly have many less holes on offense (i.e., they are set at quarterback and the receivers suddenly look much better). Of course, those are giant ifs. So, onto the good the bad and the ugly:

The Good: Pennington was phenomenal, all things considered. The defense was stout for most of the game (except for a bad stretch in the second half when the wheels came flying off and Kerry Collins started looking like a cross between Peyton Manning and Joe Montana) – picking Tennessee off three times and flying around to the ball. The Jets held the Titans to under 90 yards rushing (though it certainly didn’t seem that way at certain points in the game) and looked ok in pass coverage (except for two drives). They even sacked the quarterback twice. The linebackers, led by Jon Vilma and Eric Barton (12 and 9 tackles, respectively), were very solid. Victor Hobson and Bryan Thomas each recorded a sack. There is work to be done in getting the 3-4 base down but there is hope. Waiver wire wonder Laverneous Coles was HUGE (more on that later), as was new starter Jerricho Cotchery. Chris Baker is becoming a reliable target at tight end. Dyson looked good at corner.

The Bad: The running backs, Blaylock and Barlow couldn’t really get anything going. Thus, I’m putting the offensive line in the “bad” category even though that is pretty unfair. Brick Fergeson and Nick Mangold played pretty well in their first game, though Fergeson missed a couple of key blocks early and was called for one false start. On the bright sidem Pennington was sacked only twice against a pretty good defense and the Brick only had one penalty. Also, unless I missed anything, all of Mangold’s snaps were clean.

The Ugly: Two words – Mike Nugent. He was a total an unmitigated disaster. He missed two field goals AND an extra point. AN EXTRA POINT! Those are kicked form the two yard line. Good lord, are we really going to have to put up with this aggravation for the entire season? Or will Nugent be cut tomorrow as a shining example of what happens when you get into coach Mangini’s doghouse?

On a happier note (so far), I am beating MoC in our head to head fantasy football matchup this week, 85 to 76 – and I have more players still gaining points than he does (7 active players to 5). Unfortunately, one of his active players is LaDanien Tomlinson. Hwever - this morning, while fretting over Steve Smith’s hamstrings, I realized that I couldn’t take a chance with Smith (the news wasn’t final, but I need to go to the grocery store and wasn’t sure if I’d be back before the one deadline to make a move– you think this stuff ever happens to Mike Tannenbaum?), I scanned the waiver wire, looking over all the open receivers. After passing on TJ Housmanzadeh (who ended up also not playing) and a couple of others because of matchups, I went with Coles - trying to regain some positive Jet karma and figuring he’d be Pennington’s go to guy. And it paid off in a big way (23 fantasy points – a monster game). I decided that I love fantasy football. I also decided that I am not in any rush to drop Coles – though he might be available for the right price.

Well, I could go on for hours but I think I’ll wrap this up. Over 850 words about opening day is enough. Especially an opener like this, which took just about everything I had.

Are there really 15 more to go?

8 Comments:

  • "Mercifully, I missed two of Mike Nugent’s missed filed goals"

    That's like saying, "I missed mussaf and mincha, but neila was very draining." Football is four quarters. The second half is not optional.

    By Blogger Joe Schick, at 10:38 PM  

  • I didnt miss the second half i missed part of the thirs quarter

    By Blogger Elster, at 10:42 PM  

  • Nugent's second miss was in the 4th quarter. So you missed the 3rd and part of the 4th quarter.

    Football is four 15 minute quarters.

    By Blogger Joe Schick, at 10:58 PM  

  • No i saw that miss. you are right i only missed one fg miss. I saw the score was still 16-0 so decided not to review the tivo and let it roll.....

    By Blogger Elster, at 11:07 PM  

  • My Raiders killed me. Oy.

    By Blogger Jack's Shack, at 12:59 PM  

  • Jack my firend, you are in for a VERY long season. Welcome to the Aaron Brooks Era

    By Blogger Elster, at 2:44 PM  

  • what happened to the mets offense?

    By Blogger Limey2001, at 4:52 PM  

  • It's resting for the playoffs.

    By Blogger Elster, at 4:55 PM  

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