The Jets locker room was a tough one today. Even on the best of days, the Ralph Wilson Stadium visitors room is difficult to navigate: too small for an NFL team, especially after a game when garment bags and equipment duffels take up precious floorspace for players and reporters alike.
But on days like these, the place really shrinks around the players who are frowning and trying hard to make sense of what just transpired.
"This was a game we couldn’t really afford to lose," said tight end Chris Baker.
But lose the Jets did, and the shame of it for the defense is that the unit had its best game of the season.
No, it wasn’t dominant, and yes, Trent Edwards looked much too comfortable as a rookie QB making his first NFL start.
But the D had some moments. Two sacks, two takeaways, a big third-down play to get the ball back for the offense in the final two minutes. And rookie Marshawn Lynch did not do a three-figure number on the run defense — he had an 11-yard TD run, but his 22 other carries gained 68 yards, a shade over three a carry.
One of the sacks and the one fumble recovery — the Jets’ first of the season — came from LB Victor Hobson, who’s done some good things over the years in the western New York woods. But unlike last year, when he returned a fumble for a TD, Hobson could only offer a sad smile at this day’s work
"I just like coming out here and playing football, knowing it’s going to be a hard-fought game every time I come up here," he said, giving the Bills their due. "I wish I could enjoy it. The tables turn sometimes."
On slowing down Lynch, he had to agree: "I felt like we did a good job. At the same time, we didn’t win." There was that sad smile again.
And Hobson said he and his teammates aren’t throwing in the towel.
"We’ve just got to learn from our mistakes," he said. "We’ll bounce back. We won’t get down on ourselves. We’ve just got to understand the situation we’re in and think positive."
I know how the fans are feeling today — I’ve read the comments that came in on the Radar during and immediately after the game. And I know Hobson’s comments are the type to drive many of you up a wall.
But what else can the Jets say? They lost a game they need to win, they feel bad and they feel they’re better than this. I don’t sense any players giving up. I’m looking forward to seeing how they tighten it up this week and get ready for their next "road game." The general goals are a win over the host Giants and a 2-3 record, which of course was what they were last year after their 41-0 jacking in Jacksonville. If the Jets could fight back from that start, they can fight back from this one.
Tags: Chris Baker, Marshawn Lynch, Trent Edwards, Victor Hobson
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