Three on D: Claiborne, Martin, Bass

After each game, we're going to highlight three defensive and three offensive players and look in detail at their performance. We'll start today with the defense:

Morris Clai-burned

Until last week, Morris Claiborne hadn't given up a touchdown all season and was having a pretty good year as the Jets' number one corner. In yesterday's game, he gave up a touchdown for the second straight week but that was really the least of his troubles.

On the touchdown itself, he looked back for the ball and perhaps lost it in the sun. Demaryius Thomas made the catch despite being interfered with.

Claiborne also gave up five other first downs and was beaten on two other plays where the pass was dropped - although on one of these he was called for defensive holding. That was Claiborne's ninth penalty of the season and he's now only two behind Buster Skrine for the team lead.

In addition to his struggles in coverage, Claiborne whiffed on two tackles, including this one on third down:


Claiborne helped the Broncos to extend drives all day with two plays given up on third down and one on fourth down.

Claiborne was in good position on one pass that was overthrown but otherwise struggled to stay with his man all day. It calls into question whether he's fully recovered from the foot issues that were plaguing him earlier in the year. If not, then they shouldn't be playing him, especially since the Jets are paying him game-by-game bonuses.

J-Mart looks the part

Josh Martin has quietly become a starter as the season has gone along. He's started five of the last six games and averages over 30 snaps per game.

In yesterday's game he came free up the middle for a quarterback hit on the play where Trevor Siemian threw the touchdown to Thomas and he also flushed Siemian from the pocket with a good bull rush off the edge on this play:


In the running game Martin was credited with a tackle on a four yard gain and was also in on a run stop for no gain.

Martin has more than doubled his career-bests in tackles (33) and sacks (1.5). He also hasn't missed a tackle since week three.

While it's good that Martin has been able to perform competently off the edge, he's not really a difference maker and the Jets coaches are probably a little disappointed that someone else hasn't stepped up and taken that role for themselves. Nevertheless it gives them a reliable reserve option if they can upgrade at the position next year.

Bass in your face

Another edge defender looking to establish himself is David Bass, who had one of his most productive games of the season so far. He generated pressure a few times off the edge and recorded this sack:


Bass also made contributions in the running game with one stuff at the line and an assisted tackle on a four yard run. In addition, he made a play in coverage, tackling a receiver in the flat for a loss, although that was negated by a penalty.

Bass had seen his playing time fall, with just 13 defensive snaps in total in the three games since week nine and it's not immediately apparent why because he's consistently been better than Freddie Bishop. It could be something to do with special teams but, although Bass was blocked out of his lane on a punt return yesterday, he has two tackles in coverage this season and Bishop has none.

If he can play a few more games like he did on Sunday, perhaps Bass will establish himself as an option to compete for a role in 2018.

PREVIOUSLY: Special teams analysis