As the losses piled up and the frustration boiled over, Jets WR Quincy Enunwa said he lost his way.
"As the season kind of progressed, I got really frustrated. It wasn't going the way we wanted it to. I was happy with my success, but the team wasn't doing well and a lot of the things I was doing that got me to where I was at, I stopped doing them," said a candid Enunwa today as the Jets cleaned out their lockers. "I have to make sure that I keep myself focused regardless of what's going on. That's something I learned about myself. Regardless of what's going on, I have to maintain the focus, hard work and effort that got me to the beginning of the year."
The 6'2", 225-pounder says he stopped doing the little things that helped propel him to a blazing start in September.
"For one thing, I'm a big proponent of the JUGS. I did it every day after practice, you can ask anybody. I kind of got away from that, I'm not going to lie," he said. "The cold kind of added to that. I didn't want to stay out there in the cold and do that. It was a couple other things too, but I'm definitely going to keep on that as well as other footwork stuff. I want to be complete and as good a player as I can be on the field."
There were problems on the field and tempers flared in the locker room. Enunwa says he let the negative creep in and that impacted his approach.
"When you see the bad things that are going on, you kind of feel like, 'Wow.' You almost lose your purpose," he said. "You go into the season and you don't want to play for yourself — you want to play for team. But when team doesn't feel like a team, you have to start playing for self. You have to realize what's your purpose and have to play better. I think I need to make sure that regardless of what's going on, I'm doing what I can to help the team."
Enunwa's emergence was one of the Jets' bright spots during a 5-11 season. He led the club with 857 receiving yards and four receiving TDs and T2 in receptions with 58.
"I think it can be fixed," he said of the team's problems. "We know what we need to do. Hindsight is 20/20. Looking at it now, we know, Coach Bowles knows. There are going to be a lot of changes and I think it's going to be for the better."
With Bowles set to return for his third season as head coach, Enunwa believes the players have to do a better job of getting themselves on the same page.
"It's about us policing ourselves as well. I applaud Coach Bowles' effort," he said. "He did what he needed to do. We also have to be able to police the locker room."
Just 24, Enunwa believes he can help set the tone in 2017 with his actions.
"I was a captain at Nebraska so I know how to do it, but this is a totally different level. I also need help from the older guys, but I'm going to do my best. That starts with leading by example," he said. "I have to come in every day on time, doing the work on and off the field. From there, I can do what I can speaking-wise as well."