Jets "at" Giants: In-depth analysis - Offense

We're breaking down every player's performance in the first preseason game against the Giants. We broke down the defense earlier today.

Let's review the offensive performances in depth:

Quarterbacks - The Falk in our stars

Sam Darnold got his 2019 campaign off to a good start by driving the Jets downfield for a touchdown on his only series. Darnold only threw five passes but came away with a perfect quarterback rating. However, this belies the fact that his first pass was forced into double coverage and almost intercepted by Jabrill Peppers.

He settled down after that though, stepping up to find an open Chris Herndon downfield for 32 and then dumping off to a wide open Jamison Crowder on a crossing route for 29. After one more short completion, he hit Crowder on a short touchdown pass to wrap up his day.

Backup Trevor Siemian was efficient but safe, which probably approximates to what the Jets will want from him if he's called into emergency action during the season. He completed 13 of 16 passes but for just 77 yards but had a short touchdown pass to Elijah McGuire and perhaps the nicest throw by a Jets' quarterback all day on this play:


Davis Webb took over in the third quarter and had a rough performance. He went 2-for-7 with his only completions being dump-offs to the running back. That included an overthrow, a risky throw into traffic and two interceptions, one of which was a pick-six.

Webb had one pass batted down at the line but then on the next snap the defender again got his hands up to this time pick it clean and run it all the way back.

Fourth-stringer Luke Falk fared a lot better, although his pocket presence was a bit shaky. Falk completed 9-of-11 and was able to find Greg Dortch for a last-minute consolation touchdown after having been bailed out by a fourth down penalty.

Running Backs - Ty goes to the runner

Le'Veon Bell and Bilal Powell both sat out, so Ty Montgomery worked with the starters on the first series, generating 12 yards on two carries and a short catch.

There's an interesting battle brewing between McGuire and Trenton Cannon behind Montgomery though. McGuire led the team with six catches and a touchdown, generating 51 yards and two other first downs on his 12 touches.

Cannon's 12 touches only generated 37 yards and one first down, although his 12-yard burst over the right side was the longest running play of the day for either team. As was the case last year, Cannon and McGuire didn't have much running room as they each averaged just 2.2 yards per carry.

Perhaps the most interesting player to watch from this group was Australian Valentine Holmes, whose natural skills with the ball in his hands were readily apparent. He eluded two tacklers on a short pass for a 14-yard gain, used his speed on the outside to take another pass for 11 and then made a nice adjustment to grab a ball thrown behind him near the goal line. He also knifed through where there wasn't much room to pick up positive yardage on two of his three carries.

Holmes is a long way away from being NFL-ready though as he looked completely out of his depth when called upon to pass protect. On one play he just let a blitzer run right by him, but when he actually tried to make a block he looked even more out of his element:


It's not unexpected that he would look uncomfortable as a blocker, because this is the one aspect of the running back position that a rugby player (especially a back) would not already have some transferable skills. This is an area of his game that Holmes will be able to work on over the course of the year as he is almost certainly going to spend it on the practice squad.

Wide Receivers - Crowd goes wild

While their one series lasted longer than the starting defense's one series did, there still isn't much to take away from the performance of the starters, although it was perhaps encouraging that the two big plays on the touchdown drive both came as the outside receiving threats drew defensive attention away from players who were able to uncover going over the middle.

Robby Anderson wasn't targeted and Quincy Enunwa's only target should never have been thrown as it was almost intercepted. However, Crowder showed that he can be a weapon with a 29-yard catch and run on a short crosser and a quick route to get open for his red zone touchdown.

Beyond these three, Josh Bellamy and Deontay Burnett look likely to earn a spot. Bellamy made a couple of nice catches including a low falling grab to convert on third and long. He also drew a pass interference penalty down the field, but did miss badly on one run block. Burnett was involved but his four catches underneath generated just 12 yards and no first downs.

There's an interesting battle developing between Dortch and Tim White. White, who has been showing out in camp, is listed as a second-stringer while Dortch, a third-stringer, is listed as the number one punt returner. Round one went to Dortch, who caught four short passes including one for a touchdown, although he did also fumble. White, on the other hand, was targeted unsuccessfully four times and ended up without a catch, although he did draw a pass interference penalty.

Each of these players needs to work at being stronger at the catch-point to be capable of making contributions on offense this year, but it might just come down to special teams.

Perhaps the best play by a wide receiver all day came on Deonte Thompson's only catch. The veteran picked up a first down by showing off some good playmaking abilities:


With the third unit, Charone Peake and JJ Jones combined to play over 50 snaps but they were targeted just once between them. Rookie Jeff Smith did not play.

Tight Ends - Chris/Griffin

Perhaps the most interesting thing the Jets' starters did on offense was a formation where they motioned Montgomery to the outside and left Herndon in to pass block from the H-back position with an empty backfield and four wideouts. Herndon looked sharp on his 32-yard catch before making a swift exit.

Otherwise, the tight ends were not a factor in the passing game with Eric Tomlinson being the only one to record a catch for a short gain.

Ryan Griffin was definitely being positioned as the number two and was physical as a run blocker early, but gave up a big quarterback hit in pass protection.

Daniel Brown was targeted once unsuccessfully and didn't contribute much as a blocker. Rookie Trevon Wesco only played three snaps before the fourth quarter and his biggest contribution was to get called for a holding penalty.

Offensive Linemen - Tom Stanks

With Jonotthan Harrison still in at center while the Jets get Ryan Kalil ready for the season, the first-string offensive line held up fine on the opening touchdown drive.

This was as close as they got to giving up pressure, as Darnold stepped up before Brandon Shell's man could take the long way around the corner and Brian Winters was able to redirect his man upfield after initially being driven back. Kelechi Osemele also doled out some punishment here to support Kelvin Beachum.


Winters reportedly hurt his shoulder, so the Jets will be hoping it's not too serious. He got a good drive going on one running play, while Osemele and Harrison worked together well on a combo block.

Beyond the starters, the offensive line looked worryingly shaky. In particular, the second string guards - Tom Compton and Ben Braden really struggled. Compton gave up penetration several times and allowed his man to shed his block to stuff three runs. Braden, who was in for a team-high 64 snaps, also allowed penetration, including on one play that was blown up for a loss. He was also called for a hold and got beaten for a few pressures.

Jets fans have complained for a long time that the team never has any offensive line depth, but the fact that Compton - a player who started 14 games last year - looked no better than the depth the team already has sums up the fact that the Jets' aren't alone in this issue and that most teams will have a few guys they'd ideally like to upgrade from. They perhaps shouldn't expect Alex Lewis - who didn't play - to provide much of an upgrade either even though he started 10 games last year.

At tackle, Chuma Edoga started off on the left with Eric Smith on the right, but the two swapped places later on. Edoga did a nice job in pass protection, staying in the play well when he was half beaten on a couple of occasions. He also alertly recovered a fumble.

Smith didn't fare quite as well. He was called for a false start and an illegal hands to the face penalty as well as giving up a couple of pressures.

The second-team tackle, Jon Toth held up well in pass protection but got blown up and ended up getting called for a hold when he tried to make a block on the move. He also allowed his man to stuff one other run, although he also made a good block at the point of attack on one play.

Ryan Anderson got work as the center with the third unit. He was the last man in as Jordan Morgan and rookie Wyatt Miller got in slightly earlier on the right side.

Miller was beaten for a sack on the above play where Holmes didn't give him any help and was beaten around the edge one other time. Morgan gave up one pressure, but Anderson held up quite well.

Calvin Anderson and Brent Qvale did not play.

Don't go away, because we'll have our special teams review for you later this afternoon!