The Falcons have had trouble in the red zone all year. Things aren’t getting any better.
The Jets lead 17-7 at the half after stuffing Jacquizz Rodgers at the goal line on the final play of the second quarter. That Rodgers run came at the end of a long sequence for the Falcons in the red zone — nine snaps including two Jets penalties that handed over first downs — that ended with boos as the team ran off to the locker room. The Falcons got one last shot with a second left after the Jets mugged Tony Gonzalez in the end zone, but their offensive line failed once again to do anything to hold up the Jets defenders and Rodgers was swallowed well short of six points.
It ended a half that saw a lot of good things happen for the Jets in all phases of the game. They blocked a punt, their talented defensive line completely stopped the Falcons’ attempt to establish a run game and Geno Smith threw one incompletion and two touchdown passes. It’s gone just about as well as possible for the Jets, who surrendered the only Falcons score after a Roddy White fumble took a fortuitous bounce into Julio Jones’ hands for a long gain.
Atlanta has now failed to score touchdowns on 12 of their 20 trips into the red zone this season, a problem that will seriously hurt their chances of contending in the NFC South. A healthy Steven Jackson would help, but better play from the offensive line is a must if the Falcons are going to win the fight for the extra yard in the future.