Six years is a long time. And that is how long the New York Jets have not made it back to the NFL playoffs.
|Image source: boston.cbslocal.com|
That 2010-11 team was not without holes, but they did finish the regular season with 11 wins against five losses. And in the playoffs, they defeated powerhouses Indianapolis Colts and New England Patriots before falling short against the Pittsburgh Steelers in the AFC Championship Game.
How exactly did the Jets accomplish such a feat? Here are some reasons:
The Jets are called Gang Green because they espouse a “defense wins championship” mentality. During that season, their defense was one of the, if not the best, among the 32 teams. They were third overall in rush defense and total defense statistics, while posting the sixth best pass defense. This was the reason the Jets were able to keep in check two future Hall-of-Fame quarterbacks, Peyton Manning and Tom Brady, in the playoffs.
The 2010 season was just the second year at the helm of then-head coach Rex Ryan. His brashness and confidence may have ticked off many people but it definitely clicked with his players, who responded well to him.
Calling the signal then for the Jets was second-year quarterback Mark Sanchez. While he showed flashes of his potential, he also displayed his inexperience in some of their games. Fortunately for the team, though, their running game was working. The offensive line averaged 148.4 yards per game, which helped the team score a decent 22.9 points per game.
|Image source: richeisen.nfl.com|