Marcus Maye's Pretty Pick Couldn't Change Jets' Defensive Direction

Despite 1st-Quarter INT, Seahawks 'Were Able to Run the Ball and Throw the Ball' in 40-3 Victory


Marcus Maye added another pretty video to the highlights disc now bulging with pretty videos from Maye's almost four full seasons as a Jets safety.

DK Metcalf put a double move on Bless Austin, who released him to Maye, who picked up the talented Seattle wideout down the left sideline. Russell Wilson, being chased to his left, still has hit many a Seahawk in stride while throwing across his body and tried to loft this ball into Metcalf's hands for a 14-3 lead.

Maye, backpedaling, had it all the way. On his first hop, from the Jets 3, he tipped the ball in the air, preventing a one-hand circus catch by Metcalf. With his second leap, he plucked the ball out of the air and fell into the end zone. Interception. Jets ball. Still not sleeping in Seattle.

"It was just a play," Maye said later, with equal parts modesty and grimness at how the play didn't slow the Seahawks down much en route to their 40-3 win. "It was an out-and-up to DK. I just ready it, stayed with it. Russell put it up, I turned my head and played the ball, made a play on it.

"Now we've just got to find a way to execute out of that."

What Maye meant, of course, was that the Jets were still in this game, with 4:19 left in the opening period, and yet they about to not be in it. They got one first down on their next offensive series and punted, and the Seahawks flew right back for their second touchdown, and then a field goal, and then their third TD. It was 23-3 at halftime, 30-3 after the opening drive of the second half, and the visitors were no longer in it.

Just as when all three phases of a football team often contribute to a major victory, all three phases can mesh in a loss like this one at Lumen Field. The offense managed no touchdowns, 12 first downs and 185 yards. The kicking game struggled in the sometimes rainy Seattle weather.

And the defense, under new coordinator Frank Bush, yielded 174 rushing yards, 206 passing yards and four TDs to Wilson, who left before the third quarter had ended, 410 yards and 28 first downs in all.

About the run defense, DL Henry Anderson said, "I've got to see just what was going on on film. Stopping the run is something we pride ourselves on, and that was not even close to good enough today. ... We've got to fix that quick."

As for the pass defense, which yielded spotty pressure on Wilson and pretty much open targets for him to find for six points at a time, Maye said:

"They were able to run the ball and throw the ball. We couldn't make them one-dimensional. And if you can't do that, it's pretty tough to stop a team and you let 'em get whatever they want."

No one thought the coordinator switch from Gregg Williams to Bush had much to do with the difference between the Raiders and Seahawks showings.

"I just don't think we executed the game plan to the best of our abilities," said Matthias Farley, who made only his second start at safety in the last three seasons and his first as a Jet due to rookie starter Ashtyn Davis going on injured reserve. "At the end of the day, you have to go out there and 11 guys have to be doing their job. And when you're going against a good team, if that's not happening, things like today happen."

As a result, the Jets are 0-13 with another West Coast game at the Rams next Sunday, a home game against the hot Browns, and another season finale at the always-tough Patriots. And there just isn't much that can be said after a loss like this that hasn't already been said this season.

"This group has done a good job of really talking out loud after I'm finished," Gase said of his postgame locker room remarks. " 'Hey, we're coming back to work. Stick together. Make sure we're doing the right things day in and day out.' Guys like Marcus and Foley [Fatukasi] are reiterating what I'm saying after I'm done."

"I'm just there to keep the guys together, lead by example, let my play do the talking, try to rally the guys when things get tough," Maye said. "I do whatever I have to do for my guys and my team."

Right now, his message was a bit of tough love for these Jets, who everyone observes play hard yet each week struggle one way or another trying to merge their three phases into a winning unity.

"You go throughout the week with the game plan. Come Sunday, you've got to execute. You've got to know that it's live bullets," Maye said. "You've got to show up on Sunday and be ready to play."

See Best Images from the Week 14 in Seattle

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