Special Teams Review: Jets at Chargers

We've been breaking down this week's game against the Chargers. We wrap up today's analysis with a look at the special teams.

Let's review the key contributions...

Kicking game - Ficken's Sickening Kicking

Sam Ficken was limited in practice on Friday but got the nod over Sergio Castillo who remains on the roster. Tellingly, the Jets still used punter Braden Mann to kick off though.

Ficken missed two of his four extra points and although this didn't affect the outcome of the game, it might mean the Jets revert to Castillo whose only miss was on a blocked field goal.

Mann punted four times, pinning the Chargers inside the 20 twice. However, these punts were closer to the 15 than the goal line. One was a bit of an unlucky bounce though. Mann's best punt was a 50-yarder from near his own goal line that went out of bounds.

The Chargers have had issues with blocked punts this year and the Jets exploited that by leaving their starters in with Henry Anderson blocking the first punt to set up the first touchdown. Bryce Huff and Arthur Maulet each pressured a kick and Lamar Jackson drew a holding penalty on a punt rush.

Frankie Luvu picked up a cheap safety with one second to go as the Chargers punter tried to run out the clock.

Kick coverage - Hager the Horrible

The Chargers only returned one kickoff and one punt so there wasn't much to review on kick coverage. Recent signing Bryce Hager was in on the tackle on both plays though.

On the punt, Neville Hewitt got down the middle fast to slow up the return man and Hager and Daniel Brown combined to limit him to a short return. The kickoff was stopped near the 20-yard line as Matthias Farley stopped the return man in the open field and then Hager rallied in to help him finish it.

At the gunner position, Vyncint Smith misjudged the bounce on a Mann punt and overran the ball.

Return game - Lateral Stinking

With one second left, the Chargers had to free kick from their own 20 and opted to take the chance of booting it to Braxton Berrios.

The Jets could have played some rugby and thrown a bunch of laterals to try and advance the ball for a miracle touchdown to send the game into overtime, but Berrios ended up running forwards about 10 yards to his own 40 and then getting engulfed before anyone got into position to give him an option to lateral it to them.

Even though this was punted, it actually counts as a kickoff return because it was a free kick, so Berrios' total number of punt return attempts this year remains alarmingly low. He did have his fourth and longest return of the year on a 16-yarder where Ty Long outkicked his coverage though. The Jets also got another 10 yards added on to that due to a penalty.

Berrios also remains as the kickoff returner although he really hasn't impressed in that role. He had one return stuffed at the 14 as several players came through unblocked and his best return was stopped in the open field as Luvu missed a block. He even opted not to return two kicks that were only one yard deep.

The Jets might as well give Corey Ballentine a shot at this role because Berrios isn't cutting the mustard. Ballentine was active but didn't play.

That wraps up today's analysis from the game, but we'll be back with more over the next few days...