Adam Gase Puts Sam Darnold's Struggles on His Own Shoulders


The results were slightly improved from Monday night. In fact, the Jets turned today's game into a one-score affair and had the ball at their 23 with 10 minutes to go.

But Adam Gase's postgame assessment of the Jets' 29-15 loss at Jacksonville sounded similar to his remarks following the Monday night shutout loss to the Patriots.

"At the end of the day, it wasn't good enough," Gase told reporters following today's loss that dropped the Jets to 1-6. "We hurt ourselves. They obviously handled adversity a lot better than we did. We were poor and made a lot of mistakes. We kind of battled back there, got back in the game, but for the most part they just beat us."

Gase repeated the "three phases" analysis of which units needed to correct those mistakes. But most questions focused on Sam Darnold, whose sharpness on the Jets' two scoring drives that ended in Ryan Griffin TD catches — 7-for-7 passing on their 93-yard march to their first opening-drive score in 31 games, then 6-for-6 in moving the offense 75 yards plus 1-for-1 on the two-point-conversion pass to trim the deficit to 22-15 — wasn't sustained for the visitors' 11 other possessions.

Gase acknowledged Darnold's interceptions, the porous protection and the struggling run game, but he also faulted himself for the offense's continuing problems.

"I feel like I haven't helped him enough, we haven't put him in a good enough position," Gase said. "He's doing a lot of really good things. It's just not working the way that it should. There are a lot of things where I'm seeing him make strides and you get excited about it. I am seeing him taking control of the line of scrimmage and the Mike declarations, things like that — he's just on it.

"But when he's making these changes and he's right, we're just not all on the same page."

Asked what needed to change regarding Darnold's three interceptions, which gives him seven INTs and eight giveaways the last two games, the coach supported his second-year signal-caller.

"There's a lot of us involved in this. I'm one of them," Gase said. "I look at the playcalls and I've got to make sure I do a better job there. Some of his decision-making we've got to clean up. Some of the broken plays, because there is a lot of good things that he does when the play breaks down and he goes outside the pocket and makes plays, some of those haven't been working. We have to work on some mechanical things, some footwork things.

"I think everyone's played a part in it, whether it's been the line, the backs, receivers, we have to do a better job of it. The interception thing is easy to point the finger at one guy, but it's a full group thing. We've all got to do our job for that guy to do his."

Gase is well aware that the Jets need to shrug off their inconsistent play and multiple injuries if they want to get on track. They have six consecutive games ahead, beginning with the Dolphins at Miami next Sunday, against teams with non-winning records. But the Jaguars, who came in at 3-4, obviously weren't cooperating with that storyline.

"That's part of the process. It's not fun," Gase said about the interceptions and the growing pains in general that his Jets are experiencing in the first seven games of his tenure as head coach. "I wish I could say absolutely, 100 percent, that we should be executing at a higher level now. We're not. Nobody's pulling us out of this. ... We have to do it. No one else is coming to save us."

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