Behind Enemy Lines: Jets @ Patriots Part 1

Is Brett Favre getting too much credit? How has Kris Jenkins affected the Jets defense? What's the problem area for the Jets? Jets insider Dan Leberfeld shares the inside coop on those questions and more in part 1 of Behind Enemy Lines week 11: Jets at new England.

1) The Jets just signed Ty Law. Why do the Jets need Law who some say isn't nearly the defender he used to be?

DL: The Jets definitely need Law. First off, the cornerback spot opposite Darrelle Revis has been shaky. Rookie Dwight Lowery, the fourth round pick out of San Jose State, has been very inconsistent. Teams have been picking on him all year. He has a great upside, but he's learning on the job this year, and has had some rough outings. He was actually taken out of the Buffalo game a few weeks ago after a few tough plays against Roscoe Parrish. Also, the Jets nickel and dime backs have been somewhat inconsistent. On top of those two reasons, the Jets have had a revolving door at strong safety.

So with Law's ability to play cornerback or safety, he's welcomed addition to Gang Green's secondary. And as for him losing a little speed, the Jets play a lot of zone, so they can cover that up somewhat.

2) The public perception of Eric Mangini being a Belichick disciple continues to be the main theme in a lot of national media stories. Is Mangini still dealing with being a former Belichick coordinator, or has he shed that reputation in New York to become his own coach.

DL: I don't think he's shed that image because he is a Belichick disciple. Just like Mike Holmgren is a Bill Walsh disciple and Tony Sparano is a Bill Parcells disciple. It goes the territory of being a former assistant for a legendary coach. Like Belichick, Mangini doesn't focus much on things that don't have to do with winning on Sunday, and this "disciple" image falls into that category.

3) Kris Jenkins has come on strong for the Jets at the nose tackle spot. Of all the free agent acquisitions the Jets made this past offseason, who has worked out the best, and who the least.

DL: Kris Jenkins and Calvin Pace have both been great additions and well worth the big bucks the team gave both. Jenkins gives them the massive, quick, powerful nose tackle they need to make their 3-4 work on a high level. And Pace, gives them the big play 3-4 OLB they have been lacking.

There hasn't necessarily been a free agent addition that hasn't worked out. The major off-season additions who has been very quiet is first round pick Vernon Gholston.

4) Brett Favre has had an inconsistent career sometimes throwing more interceptions than TDs. That seems to be the case in New York recently. What do you think it would take for New York fans to turn on Favre due to those mistakes? A meltdown at Foxboro or more?

DL: Well they turned on him a little in the Kansas City game. After his third pick he was boo'd. The game in Foxboro is going to be tough for him. When you struggle at home against a Kansas City secondary featuring two rookie corners, what are you going to do against New England's complex scheme on the road?

Even in the Jets impressive win over St. Louis, he threw two potential picks that were dropped by defenders. It's really interesting. A lot of fans and reporters wanted Pennington out because he was too much of a game-manager, and now a lot of the same people are calling for Favre to be more of a game-manager.

5) Many teams talk about the stars each week, but there are plenty of players who make up the supporting cast. Which unheralded player is having the biggest positive impact for the team but not receiving the credit due and why? What would happen if they were lost to injury?

DL: I think some of the offensive linemen aren't getting the credit they deserve. D'Brickshaw Ferguson has taken a quantum leap in Year Three, as has center Nick Mangold. I think Mangold is having a Pro Bowl season. The Jets actually have pretty good backups at each position - Wayne Hunter at left tackle and Robert Turner at center.

I don't know how unheralded Leon Washington is, but he's a heck of a football player, and if anything happened to him, the Jets would be in a world of trouble. He's a talented kicker returner, punt returner, runner, receiver out of the backfield, and on top of all that, he's a really smart player. He's the Jets answer to Kevin Faulk.

If anything happened to Washington, the Jets would be in a real jam.

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