Ouch. What a stinker. If the Monday Night Football game film between the New York Jets and Tennessee Titans was thrown in a time capsule and buried for future generations to understand the game of football and appreciate it, the tape may very well be quickly put back in the time capsule and sealed shut- never to be opened again.
Yes, the game was less than fulfilling, as both squads simultaneously put most of America who was watching to sleep. Though of course the game at LP Field in Nashville can be a learning experience, and after the 14-10 win by the Titans over the Jets here are the five things we learned.
1. Both teams struggled to pass the ball really for most of the game. A passing clinic this game was not. Tennessee starting quarterback Jake Locker finished the game with a passer rating of 79.5, and though he did not throw any interceptions it was a non-spectacular, boring performance; though a win is a win. Jets quarterback Mark Sanchez finished with a 32.6 passer rating; I wasn't even playing in the game and I finished with a higher rating than that.
2. Titans running back Chris Johnson may be enigmatic. He may be frustrating to coach, and have as a fantasy football player with his inconsistent play; but for the excitement factor he is up there with the best of them.
Johnson finished the game with 21 carries for 122 yards, the bulk of them coming on the 94 yard dash for a touchdown that picked up the Titans and sunk the Jets. Johnson is one of the best home run hitters the NFL has, and not too many other running backs can hit the hole like he can and gallop 90+ yards faster or with less effort. He's still one of the best, give him a running lane and watch him go!
3. New York Jets quarterback Mark Sanchez might have very well lost his place as the team's starting quarterback. Sanchez was awful, and it wasn't the first time this season he has been bad. On Monday Night he was very bad. Four interceptions bad, along with a botched snap on the Jets last drive that fumbled away any hope of a dramatic comeback by New York.
Sanchez has been a poster boy for New York's struggles, sometimes worthy of it, other times maybe not so much. But in the 14-10 loss to the Jets, Sanchez deserves every bit of criticism thrown his way; at least that throw will not be intercepted.
4. The Tennessee Titans and New York Jets are both teams trying to find themselves, even though it is very late in the season. Off season momentum can mean a lot to a young team trying to build a foundation. The Titans came into the season with modest hopes most likely, hoping to gain consistency and confidence that will allow future success with less painful growing pains.
The Jets on the other hand had serious playoff aspirations, and were definitely planning on making plans to be playing playoff football in January. That's not going to happen, as last night's loss to Tennessee knocked the Jets from playoff contention. Not exactly the season the people in the Big Apple were looking for.
5. Monday Night Football is a special game, played in front of a national television audience with no other football games being played. It is a source of honor and pride to play on Monday Night; and fans love to get off work, get home from school, and watch a good football game.
Unfortunately the dud of a game that was played between the Titans and Jets leaves fans wanting more; or less depending on how you look at it. Maybe the NFL can schedule two Monday Night games for December, with giving the network and the people watching a chance at viewing a more competitive and riveting game.
We learned that Monday Night Magic doesn't always happen, at least it didn't happen in this sleeper between the Titans and Jets.