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Op-Ed: NFL: Rex and Jets Turn Personal into Victory over Colts 17-16

By Kristofor Molson     Jan 12, 2011 in Sports
Indianapolis - After remarks by Rex Ryan saying “This is personal” referring to him trying to win important games against Peyton Manning. Ryan’s Jets backed their coach and pulled off a win and the biggest game in Ryan’s career Saturday night to date.
The Jets struggled down the back stretch of the season coming into this game ending the season 2 and 2 after the Patriots tuned them up 45-3 in week 13. The Jets came out with a new defensive game plan, be passive. The Jets who are known for their aggressive blitz packages and tight coverage played this game a bit different and it paid off in the end.
The game was a tough grind out game mustering only seven points in the first half and that seven was in the Colts favor. The Jets bounced back with a touchdown by LaDainian Tomlinson who said after the game he came into the game the “healthiest” he has ever felt entering the playoffs. Tomlinson was the offense for the Jets in the second half with 16 carries for 82 yards and 2 touchdowns. Mark Sanchez struggled this game going 18/31 for 189 yards and no touchdowns with an interception. Mark was throwing the ball high and all over the place, struggling to hit his receivers. The Jets Antonio Cromartie came up big on a kick return in the fourth quarter with 53 seconds left to put the Jets close to the 50 yard line with a 47 yard return. It was then time for Mark Sanchez to put the Jets in position to win the game. A couple of plays and then Sanchez hit Braylon Edwards (4 rec, 62 yds,) to put the Jets in field goal position, and after that catch calmed his team down. With the Jets in position to win the game Nick Folk trotted out and kicked a 32-yard field goal as time expired to win the game for the Jets with no time left on the clock.
Peyton Manning had the game in his hands despite only throwing to his key receiver Reggie Wayne (1 rec, 1yrd) who said “maybe I should not have even showed up today.” With Wayne being on “Revis’ Island” the only receiver that had a big game was Pierre Garcon (5 rec, 112 yds, 1 td) who put the Colts on the board first with a 57 yard reception for a touchdown. Late in the game Blair White dropped a key pass in the fourth quarter that would have put the Colts closer than a 50 yard field goal for Adam Vinatieri, and had Manning yell “You have to catch that.” If Blair would have made that catch it could have ran the clock out for Vinatieri’s field goal and would have gave the Colts the win. Instead the Colts had to kick off with 53 seconds left in the game. In the mist of the Jets drive to win the game, Colts’ coach Jim Caldwell called a timeout that Manning was not to happy with from his facial expression on the sideline. That timeout gave the Jets time to set up plays that Sanchez felt comfortable with to put the Jets in better position to win the game.
Manning said he hated to lose that way, with a field goal in the last seconds of the game in a post game interview. Rex said well now Peyton knows how I feel when he does it to us in his post game interview. The Jets will return to the field where they took their worst loss of the season in Foxboro week 13 to face the Pats. The Jets and Patriots will face off for the third time this season on Sunday at 4:30 p.m. est. If the Jets can keep their running game going against the Pats then they will have a chance, but I’m rolling with the Pats to win this one.
This opinion article was written by an independent writer. The opinions and views expressed herein are those of the author and are not necessarily intended to reflect those of
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