It wasn't Mark Sanchez's finest game and it could be one of his last if his lackluster play continues. For the fourth consecutive game, the Jets' signal-caller completed less than 50 percent of his passes and tossed two costly interceptions. Without Stephen Hill, Dustin Keller and Clyde Gates hobbled by injury, a depleted receiving corps provided little support for Sanchez.
Just while Sanchez is playing his way out of the starting job, tailback Shonn Greene hardly impressed with eight carries going for 26 yards on Monday Night. New York's offensive front didn't creating any running lanes, but Greene lacked the vision and explosiveness to get to the second level of the defense. With second-year running back Bilal Powell emerging as a viable rushing option, Greene may be headed for backup duties as a change-of-pace power back.
Cornerback Antonio Cromartie answered the bell, shutting down All-Pro wide receiver Andre' Johnson, allowing just one reception for 15 yards and hauling in an interception in the first quarter. The Texans' opening drive notwithstanding; the Jets kept quarterback Matt Schaub in check and limited Houston's big-play offense. The Jets' defensive line didn't apply much pressure to Schaub,failing to register a sack and tallying just two quarterback hits. New York forced the Texans off the field on third downs with Houston converting just six of 15 attempts.
Another game, another 100-yard rusher. Rex Ryan emphasized sound fundamentals against the run to his defensive unit this week during practice, but evidently the message didn't resonate with his players. Texans' running back Arian Foster exploded for 152 yards on 29 carries and one touchdown. Foster broke a 46-yard scamper from the shadow of his own goal-post with Ryan admitting after the game that his team didn't line up properly on the play. New York ranks No. 31 overall in the NFL against the run, an uncharacteristic trend for a Ryan-led defense.
Mike Westoff's unit carried the day with kick returner Joe McKnight blazing up the sidelines for a 100 yard for a score. Nick Folk's onside kick was nearly recovered by wide receiver Chaz Schilens but the gamble backfired with Houston turning prime field position into three points. Folk connected on a 21-yarder and punter Robert Malone blasted six punts for an average of 44.2 yards.
Ryan and his staff squandered two critical timeouts due to miscommunication from the sideline to the offensive huddle which proved to be costly late in the fourth-quarter. Once again offensive coordinator Tony Sparano shied away from Tim Tebow near the goal line forcing the Jets to settle for a chip shot field goal. New York's men in headsets need to continue to incorporate Tebow into the regular flow of the offense to increase their overall productivity. All told, not the brightest moment for the Jets' staff.