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Thanks to the results of the Week 17 games this weekend, the New York Jets did not accomplish what they set out to do when they went on a spending spree this past offseason (that being making the playoffs). Now, some of it was bad luck. After all, if they were in the AFC West, they would have likely made the playoffs. Of course, Patriots fans are saying the same thing right now in regards to their own record.
So, the reason the Jets are not in the playoffs is a little more specific. It falls squarely on the shoulders (or maybe just the right one) of their largely hyped offseason acquisition at the quarterback position, Brett Favre.
Brett Favre looked so strong early on in the season, as the Jets jumped off to a solid start. In fact, at the beginning of December, there were talks of a Jets-Giants Super Bowl. However, in the games that would come, Favre began to miss receivers, underthrow balls and generally make it easier for the secondary to intercept him.
We would come to learn that Brett has been playing with a dead arm, if not a potential physical injury to his throwing arm. If the Jets would have won Sunday and made the playoffs, we would have heard stories about how Favre showed his grittiness by playing on through injury to lead his team on. Instead, what we won’t hear is how Brett should have showed concern for his team’s playoff chances and done what was in the team’s best interest.
Sure, you can say that the Jets could’ve done better if they had more health in the secondary and didn’t need to resort to Ty Law, for example. But the Jets had a very good offensive line, with great offensive talent around Favre: Dustin Keller, Jerricho Cotchery (my favorite name in football) and Laveranues Coles as pure receiving options, and Thomas Jones and Leon Washington as great running backs (with Washington being a very good receiver as well).
Some people will blame head coach Eric Mangini, but at the end of the day, having an equal number of interceptions thrown as touchdowns thrown is not going to put your team in a position to win. Interceptions force the defense to have less room for error in dealing with the opposition, and when you have a weakened secondary, that does not work to your advantage. Brett Favre, the sunset is calling you.