The Jets like to talk about themselves as a team that runs the ball well, but the results haven’t lived up to the boasts this season.
That would make Sunday the exception to the rule or the start of a bright new future for their run game. The Jets have run all over the Colts to give themselves an 15-point halftime lead at the Meadowlands. Shonn Greene has 91 yards on 14 carries, including a couple of long runs that haven’t been part of his profile in many a moon, and the Jets have 106 rushing yards at the break. That’s a big uptick from their 83 yards per game total entering today’s game.
The strong running game has opened up possibilities in the passing game, resulting in two Mark Sanchez touchdown passes and offensive productivity that wasn’t in evidence in their losses the last two weeks. They also found a way to use Tim Tebow’s throwing arm. On a fourth down from the Colts’ 40, Tebow took the snap and hit linebacker Nick Bellore for a 23-yard pass to set up a touchdown pass to Jason Hill.
Indianapolis hasn’t been able to replicate the Jets’ success. There’s no run game to speak of and Andrew Luck has completed only nine of 17 passes through two quarters. One of those incompletions was an interception by Antonio Cromartie that he returned for a touchdown until a penalty during the return brought the ball back. Cromartie later appeared to pick off another pass for a touchdown until he was flagged for pass interference. The Jets have had several costly defensive penalties and they’ve played a major role in giving the Colts the chance to kick two field goals.