There is always the prospect of taking positive developments out of a loss, even one as difficult the Jets' last-second loss to Las Vegas. One of those things they can test as a new strength on Sunday at Seattle is their red zone offense.
Against the Raiders, QB Sam Darnold and the Jets scored four touchdowns and all four came on drives past the Raiders' 20. The first two were short Darnold darts to WR Jamison Crowder. The last two were short rushes, by Darnold and Ty Johnson.
It was the Jets' 16th "perfect" game of red zone offense (four-plus RZ drives, touchdowns on all of them) in franchise history and their first since 2012, when Shonn Greene and the Green & White ran over the Colts at MetLife, 35-9.
Here are the Jets' six perfect red zone games in the last 20 seasons:
|Year, Game||Opponent||RZ TDs||RZ Opps||Final Score|
|2001 Gm 4||@ BUF||4||4||Jets 42-36|
|2002 Gm 16||vs GB||6||6||Jets 42-17|
|2011 Gm 11||vs BUF||4||4||Jets 28-24|
|2011 Gm 13||vs KC||5||5||Jets 37-10|
|2012 Gm 6||vs IND||5||5||Jets 35-9|
|2020 Gm 12||vs LV||4||4||Raiders 31-28|
The Jets are still 32nd in red zone touchdown percentage at 43%, but they're a lot closer to climbing past the Giants in 31st (48%) and out of the NFL's basement. And they've got the opportunity to show that their RZ resurgence is not a come-and-go thing on Sunday. The Raiders came into last week's game with the NFL's 22nd-ranked red zone defense (65%). This week the Seahawks defense is 27th in the red zone (67%).
Reaching Higher Ground
Another positive was the remarkable job that RBs Johnson and Josh Adams did, in the absence of Frank Gore after two plays against Las Vegas, of toting the rock, especially on off-tackle runs with the way paved by LT Mekhi Becton, RT George Fant and others. In the process, several Jets running game droughts came to their ends.
The Jets' 206 rushing yards marked the 78th 200-yard rushing game in franchise history, but it was their first since erupting for 323 yards against Denver at MetLife in Game 5 of the 2018 season. The stretch of 38 straight games without "two bills" was the Green & White's longest since going 54 games (including playoffs) without 200 rush yards, from late 2000 through the end of 2003.
Johnson's 104 rush yards not only gave him his first 100-yard game as a pro, it also provided the Jets with their first 100-yard rusher since Isaiah Crowell's team-record 219 yards ... in that same '18 game vs. the Broncos.
It also snapped an even longer drought. The Jets' 38 games without a 100-yard rusher was the longest dryspell in franchise history. The longest they had previously gone without a three-figure dude was 20 games in 1994-95.
One more metric on the uptick: With their 206 yards, the Jets' rush yards/game ranking went from 26th to 19th. That's their highest weekly rush ranking since, again, 2018. The last time they were a top-10 team were Weeks 5-6, a ranking spearheaded again by that Broncos game.
Javelin Packs a Punch
Jets rookie UDFA corner Javelin Guidry has been on a hot streak in separating opponents from footballs the past two games. On consecutive fourth-quarter series vs. the Raiders, Guidry punched the ball out of Henry Ruggs' grasp after a catch, with Marcus Maye pouncing for the recovery, then forced a Jalen Richard fumble although Vegas recovered that one.
The two forced fumbles put Guidry on a few Green & White short lists. He's one of 11 Jets, one of six Jets DBs and one of three Jets corners since 2000 to force two fumbles in a game.
Guidry also had the FF out of bounds on the disputed catch by Miami's DeVante Parker the week before. That gives him three forces in two games and puts him on an even shorter list.
Since 2000, only three other Jets defenders have had three FFs in back-to-back games: LB James Farrior in 2001, S Kerry Rhodes in '06 and S LaRon Landry in '12.