Jets quarterback Josh McCown talks about how the offense might be more aggressive in Sunday’s Week 2 game against the Raiders. McCown spoke on Wednesday, Sep. 13, 2017, in Florham Park.
FLORHAM PARK — The Jets offense was ineffective in Sunday’s Week 1 loss to the Bills.
It was also kind of boring.
The Jets threw plenty of dump-off passes to running backs in the flat, and a bunch of quick hits to receivers in the flat. Not exactly exhilarating stuff.
But the Jets will try to change things for Sunday’s game in Oakland, where the plan is to be more aggressive on offense against the Raiders.
“We’re definitely going to try to be,” Jets coach Todd Bowles said Wednesday after practice.
The Jets likely won’t have a choice. Oakland has one of the better offenses in football, and the Jets are coming off a defensive debacle in Buffalo. Even if the defense gets it together somehow this week, the Raiders are likely going to score points. And so the Jets will have to find a way to score as well.
“We understand that they have a good quarterback over there and they’re going to score points. That’s what they do,” Jets quarterback Josh McCown said. “I know our defense is going to do everything they can to hold them and shut them down.
“But you also understand that [us scoring a lot] may need to be the case. That’s part of being a balanced team, is that if we need to rely on taking more chances and pushing the ball we can do that. So we look forward to that part of it.”
It’s admirable that the Jets want to be more aggressive. But with their lack of weapons, it won’t be easy. Receivers Jermaine Kearse, Robby Anderson and ArDarius Stewart played the vast majority of the offensive snaps on Sunday. Stewart is a rookie, Anderson was a third option as a rookie in 2016, and Kearse was a third pass-catching target in Seattle last season.
And so if the Jets are going to be more aggressive, McCown will find have to find a way to do it without a playmaker — and he’ll have to do it without forcing the issue.
“It’s striking that balance where you’re smart with the football but you’re aggressive,” McCown said. “So I think that there will be more opportunities for us to be aggressive as far as how the plays unfold, and as quarterbacks, you’ve just got to earn the trust by managing that appropriately.”
That trust is being built slowly because McCown and his targets are just starting to get to know each other. Kearse was acquired via trade less than two weeks ago and has learned limited parts of the playbook.
“Yeah, you couldn’t give him the full gamut right then and there,” Bowles said of Kearse, who had seven catches for 59 yards Sunday. “But he had some things that he could do that we worked with.”
Jeremy Kerley was picked up the Tuesday before the first game and hasn’t played yet. Tight end Will Tye, who had three catches Sunday, was claimed off of waivers after the fourth preseason game.
It’s difficult to be aggressive when the quarterback and the receivers don’t have an intuitive connection. But McCown said that’s getting better every day.
“Each week, we’re going to continue building,” McCown said. “Each week the three days of practice are great for us because it’s three days that we haven’t had with some of these guys. So I’m excited about where we can be three days from now and where we can be a few weeks from now as well.
“Each practice is so valuable for us. If you’re a veteran team or if you’re established, it’s different. But with this group every practice is valuable, every rep is valuable.”
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