Bob Wischusen has been the radio play-by-play voice of the New York Jets for 18 years. Beginning this week and lasting all season, Bob will share thoughts pertaining to the Green & White in a weekly column - "Wischusen's Point of View".
1. Steve McLendon as a Leader
I've said it many times before that the only hard part of being a radio broadcaster for a team is right after a very difficult loss, having to go into the locker room, sometimes to players that are still wearing their uniforms with blood on them, go up to their locker and ask them what went wrong and what has to improve. You can always tell the true character of the leaders in the locker room when the same guys no matter how tough the losses are always willing to stand there, answer questions and deliver the message of the team. Steve McLendon is always at the top of that list, no matter how crushing a loss may be, he always seems to understand that someone and a team leader specifically, must answer the media's questions because the questions from the media are the voice of the team to the fans. So he is speaking through the media to the fans and trying to deliver some type of message of positivity, even when times are at their darkest. It's no accident that the other players on the Jets view McLendon with the type of respect that they do because they see that example, they see that he's always willing to answer the tough questions and be a spokesman for the team. As long as the Jets have a player like McLendon there to rally around, there is always a reason to believe that the following week the effort will be at its peak and a win is always possible.
2. Robby Anderson
In order to be a truly complete wide receiver in the NFL you have to be able to make physical catches in traffic. You have to be able to wall off defenders, sometimes when they are draped over you or literally in your hip pocket, with a hand between your hands and just out tough them for the football and use the strength of your hands and the physicality of your own body to box out a player that is trying to go through you to get the football. One of the most encouraging improvements we've seen over the last four to six weeks has been exactly that type of ability from a very slender wide receiver that was always known more as a deep ball threat and a big play threat and not known as a wide receiver that could run a truly complete route. Robby Anderson has shown over the past four to six weeks is that his ability to make the contested catch has improved significantly. He used to really only catch one type of ball, the deep ball, but that seems also to have changed significantly in the recent past, and I would think moving forward the Jets would view him in a completely different light than maybe they even did at the beginning of this season because he really does seem to be developing into a much more complete wide receiver where the physical catch is concerned.
3. The 2019 Season
When your team is decimated with injuries the way the Jets have been this season. When the quarterback misses a month with mono and disrupts the beginning of the season. When your best defensive player barely plays the entire season, it's really hard to accurately judge what the season could have been or what the barometer ought to be based on the final win total. However, what has been somewhat maddening about the Jets this season, is in their losses, they've made so many of the same mistakes and in their wins, they have eliminated many of those mistakes. So to finish the season strong, get a couple of wins, but even in the games that they may lose, at least be able to come out of those games and say, "We protected the quarterback, we didn't commit penalties, we didn't have field position flipped on us over and over and over again," would be a positive. If Sam Darnold could play down the stretch the way he's played over the last month, they may not beat teams that are in playoff contention, but they could at least take into the offseason the positive vibes of an upward trending finish, knowing that if they get back their best players next year, if they stay healthy, and if they re-infuse this roster with a good draft and some different talent, there's no reason to think that next year the script could be completely different.