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Here is Dan Leberfeld’s in-depth breakdown of Mark Sanchez entire performance from the Jets win over the Minnesota Vikings . . .
Mark Sanchez was average in this game, finishing 21-44-191 yards and a 59.9 quarterback rating.
He started off on a positive note on the Jets first offensive play, Sanchez executed a perfect play-action pass, with a fake handoff up the middle to LaDainian Tomlinson, which pulled MLB E.J. Henderson up towards the line, creating a space down the middle, and he hit Braylon Edwards down the right seam for a gain of 31. The next three plays flopped, and the Jets punted.
On the second series, Sanchez made a good decision throwing the ball up to Edwards, who was covered one-on-one by Antoine Winfield, who is five inches shorter. Edwards came very close to catching this jump ball, but couldn’t reel it in. Aside from a couple of nice runs by LT (12 and 17 yards), this drive went nowhere. One bad play of note was when Sanchez did a poor job of selling a screen on the right side to LT, and LB Chad Greenway stopped the runner for a loss of two.
The Jets third possession, carried from the first to second quarters. On the last play of the first quarter, Sanchez did a nice job of taking what the defense was giving him. On a second-and-six, he hit a wide open John Connor for a gain of seven. Three plays later, on third-and-six, Sanchez hit Santonio Holmes, who beat CB Asher Allen, on a quick slant for 11 yards. The pass was a little high and Holmes did a good job of coming down with it. Two plays later, Sanchez threw deep down the left side to Holmes, and the pass was unsuccessful. This was one of those plays where the receiver looked open, because he got by the corner, but the safety (Madieu Williams) was covering the deep third, and was there to break it up. This drive ended when Sanchez attempted one of those jump ball throws to Edwards, Cedric Griffin was all over him, and the receiver couldn’t come down with the football. This play was thrown deep left.
On another disappponting second quarter possession, Sanchez forced a pass to Holmes, down the right sideline, and it was knocked way by Griffin. Sanchez threw behind LT over the middle to end this drive.
On the Jets second to last series of the first half, Sanchez led the Jets on a short drive with two nice completions. On the second play of that possession, Sanchez did a great job on a fake handoff right to Shonn Greene and rolled left and hit Braylon Edwards for a gain of 11. On the next play, Sanchez did a nice job of showing great patience, waiting and waiting, and Holmes sprung open over the middle, gaining some separating on Griffin, and Sanchez hit him for a gain of 23. This drive ended with a 53-yard field goal, giving the Jets a 6-0 lead.
On the Jets last possession of the first half, Sanchez drove the Jets on another field goal drive. On the first third down, on a third-and-eight, Sanchez threw a perfect pass to Keller for eight yards on the right hash. This pass was adeptly thrown between two defenders, safety Hassan Abdullah and Henderson.
After overthrowing Holmes in the end zone, Sanchez faced a third-and-12, and hit J-Co for a gain of 14 on the short right side. A few plays later, on a second-and-12, Sanchez threw a pass on the short right side to Edwards, who did a great job breaking a tackle attempt by Winfield (one of the best tackling corners in the NFL), and he made a short gain into a 12 yard gain, and a first down. Then after spiking the ball, Sanchez dumped a pass to LT, in the middle of the field, and he took it 10 yards to the three. But drive ended with a dud, with Sanchez throwing three incompletions (Edwards, Cotchery and Keller). They Jets got a raw deal on the J-Co incompletion. Griffin held him as he made his cut in the end zone, and this messed up the timing of the route. It should have been a penalty. The Jets kicked a field goal to go up 9-0.
On the Jets first possession of the third quarter, the drive ended with Sanchez throwing incomplete to Keller. Their timing was off on this third-and-four throw. Sanchez threw it early, it hit Keller right as he turned around. The Jets settled for another field goal (they took over on a short field after a Favre fumble).
The Jets next third quarter possession ended when Sanchez overthrew Keller, over the deep middle, and it should have been picked off by Winfield (who has never been known for his hands).
Late third, after a Brad Smith 86-yard kickoff return, the Jets had a three-and-out and then kicked a field goal. But Sanchez did help Nick Folk inch a little closer with a five yard out to J-Co on the right side. J-Co made a terrific catch on this play.
The Jets first possession of the fourth quarter ended when Sanchez was high and behind Keller on a crossing route.
Middle fourth, the Jets scored a much-needed touchdown on a 23-yard scamper by Shonn Greene. Sanchez had two key passes on this possession. On the second play of the drive, he hit Edwards on a crossing route for a gain of 16. Then two plays later, he threw a 10-yard out to Cotchery on the left side. Both these plays were made against Allen, who the Jets were clearly picking on. He was playing for Griffin, who unfortunately, coming off a right knee injury last year, hurt his other knee in this game.
On the Jets last possession, Sanchez did a poor job with clock management around the two minute warning, but he did take advantage of a favorable matchup, hitting Holmes for 11, on a quick slant on Lito Sheppard. This play made the Vikings burn a timeout.
Overall, a shaky performance by Sanchez, but he did enough to win.