Skip to main content

Offense Needs to Turn the Tide

As the Jets' June minicamp neared a conclusion, offensive coordinator Marty Mornhinweg said that he had "flooded" his players with a lot of information and that he wished he had more time for reps.  Mornhinweg won't have to wait too much longer for those reps and Jets Nation hopes that the accomplished play-caller will provide the offense a much-needed lifejacket.

"We'll certainly use the West Coast terminology, but the West Coast system is a timing, efficient, quarterback-driven type of offense that runs the ball in a physical, deceptive manner," he said after joining the Jets.

For much of the past two seasons, the offense has sprung too many leaks.   While ball security issues have been well-documented, the lack of chunk plays from the Green & White has been equally glaring. 

The Jets tied for last in the NFL last season with 37 giveaways and their 71 over the course of the past two seasons places them 31st overall.  On average, New York's AFC representative turned it over 2.3 and 2.1 times a contest respectively in 2012 and 2011.

But it is not like the Jets have been wheeling and dealing with a high-risk, high-reward attack.  The Jets combined to total an NFL-low 93 plays of 20 yards during that time as they dipped to 45 in '12 after producing 48 in '11. 

Teams can't score points if they don't have the ball.  And even if you have the football — it makes things awfully difficult when explosion plays are hard to come by.  The NFL is a points league and the Jets averaged 17.6 points a contest last season.  The offense failed to produce more than 10 points in eight games.

The Mornhinweg resume speaks for itself, having orchestrated record-setting offenses with the Eagles and the 49ers. 

"We'll utilize many different personnel groupings and we'll certainly use all the eligible receivers and runners," he said.  "It's my responsibility to get the football to our best players, our playmakers a little bit more."

The Jets' No. 1 playmaker is busting his tail, trying to get back to full health after suffering a Grade 4 Lisfranc injury last October. 

"I'm excited to get him back on the field.  We'll have a plan ready," Mornhinweg told me of Holmes on a "Jets Talk LIVE" installment.  "We've already thought about it and tentatively devised the plan for him in training camp to get him to the regular season games." 

"It's going to be a fun season for us this year. The receivers are really loving the system," Tone told me.  "The quarterbacks are excited to be able to step back and just throw the ball all over the field.  We definitely want to come together as a group and really rally behind our guys. Having lost so many guys, we're going to rebuild, rebuild and rebuild, and hopefully get it together by the time training camp starts."

If Holmes isn't ready by the start of camp, the Jets will continue to move forward and hope his progress is speedy.  While Jeremy Kerley is the team's leading returning pass catcher, there are the great unknowns of Stephen Hill and Clyde Gates.  The Jets need Hill to become a polished performer while they hope Gates can become a dependable on-field target. 

With nobody truly flashing at tight end during the offseason, the Jets offered Kellen Winslow Jr. a tryout and he made an impact immediately. 

"You could tell that he was talented, a high level of skill and he was experienced…" Mornhinweg said.  "He's quite confident in his abilities in talking to him and that's the type of player that we want."

A healthy Winslow Jr. could become the Jets No. 1 TE or at the very least push Jeff Cumberland.  There appears to be some capable playmakers in the backfield in Chris Ivory, Mike Goodson, Bilal Powell and Joe McKnight.     Goodson, who faces chargers after an offseason arrest, has 4.4 speed and doesn't need much to go a long way.

"I like to make big plays.  I like to make the crowd move and find the open space," he said.  "When it comes that time, you have to lay into some guys sometimes."

"I'll use all eligible runners and receivers and I'll use the fellows that aren't starters," Mornhinweg said.  "If they've got one strength, I'll try to utilize that somewhere during the game and quite possibly multiple times. All those things are important."

But the biggest question for not only Mornhinweg but the entire organization is at quarterback.   Veteran Mark Sanchez and rookie Geno Smith don't appear to have any separation heading into SUNY Cortland.

"It's quite a tussle.  They're hammering it out here and they've both played at a high level and on a fairly consistent basis with an exception of a couple of plays in those 10 OTAs and this mandatory minicamp," Mornhinweg told me last month.  "With the exception of a couple of plays, they both have been running and running pretty good."

Mornhinweg, who has mentored five Pro Bowl quarterbacks in his NFL tenure, has quite a job at hand in terms of playmakers and passers.  Not only do the Jets need good news on a health standpoint with the recovering Holmes and a possibly revitalized Winslow Jr. in addition to a rapid development of Hill, Mornhinweg and QB Coach Lee will have to re-program a turnover prone veteran quarterback or get an awfully talented rookie to play in short order.

The water has been rough of late for the Jets offense, but the new skipper will look for smooth seas ahead.

This article has been reproduced in a new format and may be missing content or contain faulty links. Please use the Contact Us link in our site footer to report an issue.

Related Content