Special Teams Review: Jets-Bengals
We've been breaking down this week's game against the Bengals. We wrap up today's analysis with a look at the special teams.
Let's review the key contributions...
Kicking game - Will we be seeing him any Mor?
This could be the last game Thomas Morstead plays as the Jets' punter. He's been filling in for the youngster Braden Mann, who is now back in practice and should be activated imminently. With the short week, perhaps they give Morstead one more game before going back to Mann.
Morstead has done a solid job with the Jets and he only had to punt once in what could be his swansong. It was a decent 45-yard punt with no return.
Special teams didn't really have a material impact on this game for either team other than a missed 54-yard field goal by Matt Ammendola which could have loomed large. The kick was hooked wide all the way.
On that kick - and one other as Ammendola made two extra points and a pair of 24-yard field goals - the Bengals got some pressure by sneaking a rusher in between Ryan Griffin and Folorunso Fatukasi.
Ammendola did kick off effectively though, as he had touchbacks on six of his seven kickoffs.
Kick coverage - Working hard or Hardee working?
With just one kickoff that was returned, there wasn't much work for the coverage units this week.
Justin Hardee dived on the return man's back to make the tackle on that kickoff near the 20. Javelin Guidry was also credited with an assist. Hardee has five special teams tackles for the Jets this year but they're actually led by Del'Shawn Phillips, who has six.
On Morstead's only punt, Jeff Smith - back in action at the gunner position after two games on the inactive list - got downfield first and the return man took a fair catch. Smith went to ground though, so the return man might have made some yardage if he didn't make the early signal.
Return game - Braxton Inaction
Braxton Berrios had the return duties again this week and didn't do a bad job, although he didn't get many chances. He had a zig-zagging 35-yard return on one kickoff. Tim Ward got driven back into the path of Berrios and Tyler Kroft missed his block on his other return as he was was blown up at the 25.
It will be interesting to see if the Jets go back to Tevin Coleman once he returns to the lineup.
On punts, Berrios took two fair catches and left one to bounce, but was able to return the last one 16 yards out past the 20 as the punter out-kicked his coverage.
The Jets used various players in the vice role, without much success. Brandin Echols, Bryce Hall and Deuce Carter all got beaten once with Hall getting completely turned around.
That wraps up today's analysis from the game, but we'll be back with more over the next few days...