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Blame goes far beyond Zach Wilson for Jets’ inept showing

Sure, the quarterback was terrible. The day Zach Wilson didn’t get a pass, the day he barely managed to complete one, the day he ended up on the bench for Tim Willie Boyle, the day he bled out and got banged. The Bills defense was a monster at Midway, unable to complete a single pass to the wide receivers.

But it wasn’t his fault that the Jets’ season was officially sent to assisted living by the Bills on Sunday, a laughable 32-6 loss for a team that was in disarray until about 4:24 p.m. Sunday. Ta. Running back Xavier Gipson took the first kickoff a minute later, and he left the football about three seconds later.

If I returned to the La-Z-Boy a minute late with chips, excitement, and a leadoff beer, I realized the Jets were already down 3-0. You would think he would be adept at playing from the back because the Jets practice playing from the back a lot, but it was clear the Bills could score.

They named it 32-6.

In this way, Team Chaos regained their season.

Zach Wilson sits on the bench during the Jets’ loss to the Bills on November 19, 2023.
Charles Wenzelberg/New York Post

Meanwhile, Team Imptature struggles to return to Jersey on what could be one of the most dangerous days of the year, the day after Thanksgiving. The Dolphins are ready to make Black Friday even darker and push the Jets even further. Into the abyss.

“Jets fans don’t deserve this,” running back Breece Hall lamented.

No need to tell Jets fans that, but most of them are probably numb to nothing by now. Maybe it would have been better for everyone if the Bills’ first game went the way it did after Aaron Rodgers went down. But that didn’t happen. It wasn’t an illusion that it felt like they were 4-3 an hour and a half ago.

But it certainly feels that way now that they’ve lost three straight and this complete decline has left them at 4-6 and staring at extinction before the calendar turns to December.

“I don’t think anyone did anything today,” said Robert Saleh, who limped in dismay after the fight ended. “The players, the coaches, the scheme…obviously it wasn’t good enough. None of it was good enough.”

It’s never a good sign when a team, like the Bills, postpones the opening kickoff and still gets the first snap of the game thanks to Gipson. Thanks to Gipson, opening night walk-off punt returns now feel like an otherworldly event.

Garrett Wilson leaves the field after the Jets’ loss to the Bills on November 19, 2023.
Charles Wenzelberg/New York Post
Khalil Shakir (age 10) runs with the ball for a touchdown against Sauce Gardner (age 1) during the Bills’ win over the Jets on November 19, 2023.
USA TODAY Sports (via Reuters Con)

Never can two of your best players (Garrett Wilson and Sauce Gardner) take on every bit as much responsibility for the whack as your most maligned player (Zach Wilson). Not a good sign.

But that happened on Sunday. Garrett Wilson only caught two balls and fumbled one of them. Gardner was called for an unforgivable unsportsmanlike penalty early in the third quarter with the game still tied, then was burned on an 81-yard TD shot from Josh Allen to Khalil Shakir. It decided the match.

And it’s never a good sign when a defense, the team’s pride and joy, allows 32 points to an offense that was struggling enough to disqualify its coordinator five days ago. Perhaps it was simply foreshadowing the inevitable Sunday that everyone would come, when the troops were exhausted with all the team’s hopes on their backs. Maybe they had a day off. Perhaps Allen was overjoyed to have Saleh publicly say he “embarrassed” him in the season opener.

Xavier Gipson fails during the Jets’ loss to the Bills on November 19, 2023.
USA Today Sports

Either way, they were downtrodden and looked every bit as outmatched in the second half as the offense had been for the entire 60 games. If any of the 70,603 people in Highmark Stadium felt worried when the Bills took their seats at 4:25, that’s a big problem. I did.

“Everything was really tough,” Zach Wilson said.

you know what? Football is supposed to be difficult, especially at this level. It must be difficult to win a football game. Somehow, the other team comes up with a way. Somehow, it’s been 13 years since he last appeared in the playoffs, and everything about the Jets seems more complicated than a math problem that Will Hunting lit up in front of his professor.

There are Dolphins on deck. in a short week. Happy Thanksgiving!

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