Sam Darnold
Jet X Graphic, Getty Images

Michael Nania stacks up the 20 best individual performances for the New York Jets in 2019.

Nania's Numbers

45. Brian Poole vs. Browns (Week 2)

Poole did miss a couple of tackles against the Browns (one of which led to a Nick Chubb touchdown), but his coverage was excellent. He allowed 2-of-7 passing in his direction for 11 yards and zero first downs, breaking up two passes. Jarvis Landry finished with 32 receiving yards, his second-lowest total of the season.

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44. Folorunso Fatukasi vs. Cowboys (Week 6)

Fatukasi contributed to three run stops for one yard or less and added a hit on Dak Prescott that helped to force an incompletion.

43. Steve McLendon vs. Dolphins (Week 14)

Just about every member of the Jets defensive front enjoyed a fun day of splashy play-making against Miami’s hideous offensive line, but McLendon stood out the most. He had three run stuffs (those plays combined for -2 yards), a quarterback hit, and a hurry, while creating game-wrecking penetration throughout the game.

42. Alex Lewis at Eagles (Week 5)

The only offensive line performance on this list. In his Jets debut, Lewis was credited with zero pressures allowed over 38 snaps in protection against a dominant Eagles front that ranked sixth in quarterback hits (106). Lewis was also strong in the run game, recording a 75.0 Pro Football Focus grade in that phase (7th among guards in Week 5). The Jets ran for 51 yards on nine carries (5.7 average) to the left side with a touchdown and two first downs.

Lewis’ 82.0 overall Pro Football Focus grade in the game was the best earned by any Jets OL in 2019 and fourth among guards in Week 5. The Joe Douglas pickup provided a semblance of competency at a time where the Jets had none of it upfront.

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41. Arthur Maulet vs. Raiders (Week 12)

On seven targets in his direction, Maulet allowed six catches for only 33 yards (4.7 per target) and one first down. He sprinkled in a pair of stops behind the line of scrimmage in the run game.

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40. Brian Poole at Bengals (Week 13)

Poole allowed no catches on two targets over 25 snaps in coverage, matching up often against Tyler Boyd, who ranked third in the NFL with 776 receiving yards out of the slot.

Brian Poole coverage versus Tyler Boyd, near-INT

39. Blessuan Austin vs. Giants (Week 10)

In his first NFL game, Austin was tossed into the action for 48 snaps after Gregg Williams benched the struggling Nate Hairston. The rookie delivered as he allowed 1-of-4 passing in his direction for 14 yards (one first down) over 38 snaps in coverage. Austin had two pass deflections and forced a fumble as the Giants attempted to lateral their way to victory on the game’s final play.

38. Tarell Basham at Bills (Week 17)

Bashsam recorded four pressures, one of which was a strip-sack that was reversed to an incomplete pass. He added a pass deflection, a stop short of the first down marker in coverage, a fumble recovery, and a run stuff for a two-yard loss on future teammate Frank Gore.

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37. Brian Poole at Patriots (Week 3)

Poole allowed 5-of-7 passing in his direction for 21 yards (3.0 per target) and one first down. He also contributed to four run stops shy of the first down marker.

Brian Poole makes a great tackle

36. Marcus Maye vs. Bills (Week 1)

Maye had an excellent interception that was wiped out by a Darryl Roberts penalty away from the play. He also had a clutch deflection in the end zone (that he probably should have picked off) and made some good open-field stops against Devin Singletary as the last line of defense.

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35. Blessuan Austin vs. Raiders (Week 12)

Austin allowed 3-of-6 passing in his direction for 24 yards (4.0 per target) and two first downs over 38 snaps in coverage. He contributed to two run stops for short gains, including a clutch 4th & 1 tackle with Marcus Maye.

Bless Austin and Marcus Maye team up for 4th down stop

34. Jamal Adams at Eagles (Week 5)

The first of many appearances by the President.

Over 32 snaps in coverage, Adams allowed one catch on two targets for eight yards and no first downs. He stopped four run plays short of the first down marker, tackled Zach Ertz short of the sticks on a third down play, and had an impressive 1-on-1 breakup against Dallas Goedert.

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33. Blessuan Austin at Redskins (Week 11)

In his first NFL start, Austin allowed 3-of-6 passing in his direction for nine yards (1.5 per target) and no first downs, adding in a pass breakup and a run stop.

Bless Austin breaks underneath and makes tackle

32. Nathan Shepherd vs. Giants (Week 10)

In his second game back from suspension, Shepherd clobbered the Giants, picking up two sacks (one of them wiped out by a Nate Hairston penalty) and two tackles in the backfield on Saquon Barkley.

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31. Sam Darnold at Bengals (Week 13)

One of the most underrated performances of Darnold’s career. Casual observers knocked the hell out of Darnold for his 71.4 passer rating (second-worst of season) and 4.98 yards per attempt (third-worst), but when you turn on the film, you see that he actually played a solid game. The Jets dropped five passes while the offensive line allowed a 46.3% pressure rate (fourth-worst of Week 13). Darnold was far from perfect, but he chained together a bunch of beautiful throws.

I went into greater detail on Darnold’s performance against Cincinnati in my Sam Darnold Grades series, which also includes my 0-100 grade.

30. Jamal Adams vs. Raiders (Week 12)

Adams was only targeted once over 31 snaps in coverage, stopping that pass for no gain. He picked up two quarterback hits, shared a sack with Brandon Copeland, and made good open-field tackles to stop the bleeding on three plays (two pass, one run) in which teammates were either beaten in coverage or missed a tackle.

Jamal Adams

29. Ryan Griffin at Redskins (Week 11)

Griffin yanked in all five of his targets for 109 yards and a touchdown, the most yards from scrimmage gained by a Jet not named Le’Veon Bell or Robby Anderson.

28. Quinnen Williams vs. Cowboys (Week 6)

Williams was a silent assassin in the passing game against Dallas, creating three hits and two hurries for teammates through his work as a stunt penetrator. He was incredibly active against the run, racking up six stops for three yards or less (five of those for one yard or less).

27. Ryan Griffin at Jaguars (Week 8)

Griffin caught all four of his targets for 66 yards and two touchdowns, with the other two catches going for first downs. He also threw in a two-point conversion.

Ryan Griffin tough grab big gain

26. Jamal Adams at Patriots (Week 3)

Adams allowed 1-of-3 passing for -6 yards and no first downs, most notably notching his first career touchdown on a pick-six off of the heir to Tom Brady‘s throne, Jarrett Stidham. In typical Adams fashion, he also made an impact in the run game with two stops for one yard or less.

Jamal Adams

25. Jamison Crowder at Redskins (Week 11)

Crowder caught 5-of-8 targets for 76 yards, one touchdown, and three additional first downs in his return to the D.C. area.

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24. Jamison Crowder vs. Giants (Week 10)

Five grabs on six targets for 81 yards, one touchdown, and three more first downs. Back-to-back solid games for Crowder.

Jamison Crowder crossing route, broken tackle, TD

23. Robby Anderson at Bengals (Week 13)

Try not to shed too many tears, as the man who was once affectionately known to Jets fans as the “Sun God” is going to be making a few more appearances.

Anderson and Darnold built an excellent connection in the intermediate range down the stretch, especially in this game against the Bengals. Anderson reeled in 7-of-10 targets for 101 yards and an impressive six first downs. He did fail to haul in two contested grabs that could have been game-changers – an opening-drive deep touchdown and a tough back-shoulder on a fourth down in the fourth quarter – but he did more than enough to make up for it.

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22. Le’Veon Bell vs. Raiders (Week 12)

Bell enjoyed one of his most efficienct performances against Oakland, picking up 108 yards from scrimmage (his third-most of the season) on 17 touches (11th-most). His 6.4 yards per touch was a season-best.

Le'Veon Bell one handed out of slot

21. Marcus Maye vs. Cowboys (Week 6)

Maye recorded a clutch pass deflection in the red zone with under a minute to go in the fourth quarter and made five strong open-field tackles against Ezekiel Elliott that saved a lot of potential yardage.

Maye also had some crucial snaps in coverage – read more about his performance against the Cowboys here.

20. Jamison Crowder vs. Bills (Week 1)

Many wrote off Crowder’s ridiculous 14-of-17 performance due to the fact that he only picked up 99 yards (7.1 per reception), but the man was moving the chains on an afternoon where the Jets could not get anything going. Crowder picked up six first downs – the rest of the team combined for nine first downs (that includes the run game).

19. Jamison Crowder vs. Cowboys (Week 6)

Crowder’s outing against Dallas provided a lot more bang for the buck. He secured 6-of-9 targets for 98 yards and four first downs, helping to set the tone in Sam Darnold’s triumphant return to the field.

 

Sam Darnold hits Jamison Crowder on the wheel

18. Marcus Maye vs. Steelers (Week 16)

Maye shined in key moments against Pittsburgh. He made two huge open-field tackles against James Conner, picked up a 3rd & 3 interception in the end zone, and saved the Jets with a clutch breakup as the clock ticked beneath one minute.

Marcus Maye saves a TD versus Steelers

Check out more on Maye and Adams’ dynamic performance as a duo against Pittsburgh here.

17. James Burgess vs. Dolphins (Week 14)

Burgess had an inconsistent season, but he was dialed-in against Miami in Week 14. He allowed 4-of-5 passing for 24 yards and no first downs, while stopping a whopping nine run plays short of the first down marker. Burgess also had a pick-six called back by a dubious holding penalty, a forced fumble (recovered by Miami), and a pass deflection.

James Burgess makes a stuff

16. Robby Anderson vs. Raiders (Week 12)

Anderson caught 4-of-5 passes against Oakland for 86 yards and a touchdown, with each of the other three receptions going for first downs. Three of his four catches were superb grabs in contested situations.

Robby Anderson red zone Raiders

15. Le’Veon Bell vs. Browns (Week 2)

The numbers are not the most efficient – 68 rushing yards on 21 carries (3.2 average), 61 receiving yards on 10-of-10 (6.1 average) – but when watching this game, it fell like Bell could not be stopped, and that he was literally the only positive thing the franchise had going for it. He was credited with a season-best 11 broken tackles (4 as a rusher, 7 as a receiver).

Le'Veon Bell juke stutter hurdle.

14. Robby Anderson vs. Cowboys (Week 6)

Anderson caught 5-of-8 targets for 125 yards (season-high for any Jet), two first downs, and one beautiful touchdown.

Sam Darnold 92 yard bomb to Robby

13. Jamison Crowder at Ravens (Week 15)

There’s just something special about Crowder in the D.M.V. Four weeks after a marvelous return to Landover, Crowder went into Baltimore and grabbed 6-of-11 targets for 90 yards, two touchdowns, and three more first downs. He can be forgiven for that one unsightly drop since it allowed this magical moment to happen.

Sam Darnold needle threader to Crowder

12. Robby Anderson vs. Dolphins (Week 14)

Anderson caught 7-of-11 targets for 117 yards – every one of his seven catches resulted in a first down, the best total by any Jet in 2019.

Sam Darnold deep right shot to Robby

11. C.J. Mosley vs. Bills (Week 1)

Mosley did not take long to make the Jets look like geniuses for inking him to the largest deal ever handed to a linebacker. He set the crowd ablaze with a pick-six, scooped up a fumble recovery, stuffed a run at the line, dropped back deep to deflect a potential touchdown, missed zero tackles while making six, and allowed one catch for nine yards over 30 coverage snaps.

The Jets immediately felt Mosley’s absence once he stepped off the field. Bills running backs had gained 28 yards on eight carries (3.5 average) prior to his exit, then gained 57 over four attempts (14.3 average) on the first drive after Mosley went to the sideline. Buffalo had three points on the board when Mosley went down – Josh Allen led back-to-back touchdown drives after the former Raven left.

TOP TEN


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Very well done