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Notebook | Captain C.J. Mosley 'Not Dwelling' on Elimination from Playoff Contention

Jets Defense Finding Motivation for Final Three Games


The Jets fell to 5-9 and were eliminated from playoff contention Sunday following their 30-0 loss to the Dolphins at Hard Rock Stadium Sunday. With 3 games remaining in the regular season, veteran LB C.J. Mosley and Jets defense are not looking in the rearview mirror.  

"We still got three games left, so I'm focused on Washington," Mosley said. "I'm not dwelling on [playoff elimination] at the moment.

"I'm a leader on this defense. I'm a leader on this team, so that's just who I have to be no matter if I'm tired or hurting or not feeling it. I don't have time or room for excuses. I just got to make sure that I'm in that right mental mindset every day."

In their rematch against Miami, the Jets defense did a better job at defending the run than the teams' first meeting on Black Friday. The Green & White allowed 77 yards rushing (2.8 ypc) after surrendering 167 yard (4.5 ypc) in their Week 12 34-13 loss. Nonetheless, QB Tua Tagovailoa threw for 224 yards and a touchdown, and the Jets offense registered just 103 net yards of offense as Miami completed the season sweep of New York.

"They played a great game," Mosley said. "Tua had a really good game, he threw the ball in some really tight windows on us. I feel like we handled the run game really well compared to the first time we played them. We got put in some tough situations as a team that we couldn't get our way out. Going against great teams with great coaches, when you put yourself in those situations, couldn't get off the field on third down (6 of 15) on some occasions, it's just hard to win games like that when all phases aren't playing well."

Despite the disappointing loss in Week 15, Mosley is focused on keeping the defense playing at a high level. Mosley is the Mike linebacker of a unit that ranks 7th in total defense (298.4 ypg) and is tied for 3rd in touchdowns allowed (15).

The Jets will play their final home game on Christmas Eve when they host the Commanders (4-10) at MetLife Stadium. The following two weeks they will play at the Browns on Dec. 28 and then finish the season at the Patriots at a time and date to be determined in Week 18.

"I think we just stick to what we said a few weeks ago and it really resonated with me is control what we can control," Mosley said. "I can't speak on the offense because I'm not on the offensive side. I respect the coaches, I love the coaches, but I'm not in their rooms. I don't know what they're saying. I can't worry about that. I got to prepare for the next opponent. I got to make sure I'm doing my job on the defense."

*Be The Reason for Change *For the second straight season, the Jets have started at least three different quarterbacks – this season Aaron Rodgers, Zach Wilson and Tim Boyle. The QB instability has made things difficult on the offense as the unit scored has scored league-low 13 touchdowns. However, players have said quarterback instability is not the sole reason for their 2-6 mark after the bye.

"If we just depended on one person, one position to save our organization, then it's never going to happen. It has to be everybody," LB C.J. Mosley said. "Everybody has to have their mindset, everybody has to believe — like I said before — like they're the reason why we're here to win, they're the reason why we're taking those next steps. If we're just putting all our chips on one person, then 9 times out of 10 it's not going to happen. This is a team sport; it takes three phases to win football games. At the end of the day, we all have to have that mindset that I'm going to be the reason why things change tomorrow."

More to Fight For

Jets DL Solomon Thomas, who signed a 1-year contract with the Jets in March, set a career high for sacks in a season against Miami delivering his fifth Sunday. With the opportunity to extend the season off the table, players have myriad reasons to put their best foot forward against the Commanders, Browns and Patriots.

"We have guys out here fighting on contract years, guys out fighting to just get healthy, guys out here fighting to have a good season and then fighting for our community, fighting for our fans," Thomas said. "These three games, there is no question about it we are going to finish as strong as we can, give everything we got. If you aren't, you are not going to be out on that field."

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