Several things went wrong for the New York Jets defense on the first play of the game, the Raheem Mostert 80-yard touchdown.
It happened in a flash. Before the imaginary capacity crowd could even sit down, Raheem Mostert took a pitch and dashed to the end zone while covering 80 yards.
In fact, it happened so quickly that the speedy Mostert recorded a blazing 23.09 miles per hour on the play, the fastest speed recorded in five years, according to Nick Wagoner of ESPN.
From a defensive perspective, the New York Jets messed this one up from several angles. Gregg Williams deployed curious personnel, Henry Anderson committed a cardinal defensive end sin and Quincy Wilson fell entirety too short of his job.
Kyle Shanahan did exactly what good play-callers are supposed to do when an overwhelming weakness is present. He attacked.
Shanahan constantly attacked the Jets’ edge. Without a true play-in-space edge on either side (no, Jordan Jenkins is not athletic enough in many regards), San Fran tested the Jets edge support.
The Mostert 80-yard scamper was just the first of many tries.
- Offense: 21 personnel
- Defense: Big Nickel (4-2-5)
Why Williams would start in a big nickel against this team is one of the greater mysteries in the football world. Finishing second in rushing a year ago (only Lamar Jackson‘s ground game elevated the Baltimore Ravens to the first-place spot), ensuring the defense is never lighter than it has to be is critical against the Niners.
For some strange reason, the Jets put three safeties on the field against the Niners’ base look.
This must have been Williams’s way of combatting his lack of inside linebacker bodies. Avery Williamson did see time in the game, but Alec Ogletree started and played horribly. Perhaps Williams thought Bradley McDougald and/or Marcus Maye could help counter the Niners’ outside speed (Mostert).