Young New York Jets pass-rushers Bryce Huff and John Franklin-Myers each had excellent games getting after the quarterback in Miami.
After playing 60.0% of the team’s defensive snaps against the Broncos in Week 4 and 40.0% against the Cardinals in Week 5, Huff saw his snap count sliced to a 25.0% portion against the Dolphins in Week 6. He appeared on only 14 defensive snaps – six against the run, six as a pass-rusher, and two dropping into coverage.
Over that short amount of time, Huff made a ton of noise, putting the pressure on Gregg Williams to push his snap count back up.
On this play, Huff lines up in a four-point stance as the 7-tech (inside shoulder of the tight end). He gets a fantastic jump off the ball and goes for a bull rush against the left tackle (Jesse Davis), whose hands are low and wide, exposing his chest. Huff bulldozes him straight through the running back and into the pocket, forcing a quick throw by Ryan Fitzpatrick that falls incomplete on third down.
Standing up on the edge in a wide alignment, Huff takes on the left tackle. Huff squares up the tackle and flashes his inside arm to try and bait him into bringing his hands up so he can rip underneath. This is successful, as the left tackle bites and shoots his hands, opening the window for Huff’s rip move. Huff rips his left arm underneath the tackle’s outside armpit, dips his hips, and bends around the edge. He likely would have had a sack if Fitzpatrick did not release the ball so quickly.
Nice job by Quinnen Williams against the left guard there as well. It’s also worth noting that the left tackle may have gotten away with a hold as he had his arm around Huff’s neck after getting beat.
Fitzpatrick gets this ball out immediately, but Huff again beats Davis at left tackle. Huff catches Davis with his locked to the outside. He squares up and then swats Davis’ hands before slicing inside for an angle on Fitzpatrick that would have caused trouble for Miami if not for the quick release. Fitzpatrick had the Dolphins in a hurry-up here, catching the Jets with 12 men on the field.
Huff recorded his first career sack in this game, which we will get to, but that was not the only sack he had a hand in.
Here, Huff drops into coverage off the edge. He immediately flips his hips outside and locates DeVante Parker, who is running a post. Huff carries Parker far enough up the field to pass him off to Marcus Maye. Once he passes off Parker, Huff picks up Isaiah Ford‘s curl route to shut down yet another option. Fitzpatrick looks Huff’s way the entire time, but does not get rid of the ball thanks to Huff’s excellent coverage, buying time for Tarell Basham to get the sack.
Plays like that are the stuff of a complete outside linebacker. Gregg Williams must have immediately penciled Huff back into a starter role when he saw that play in the film room.
Huff’s first sack was a solid play, but it was actually less impressive than any of the plays above. The sack was truly created by John Franklin-Myers.
From the 4i-technique position, Franklin-Myers takes on the right guard and works his way inside to force Fitzpatrick out of the pocket. On the opposite side, Huff’s rush is thwarted, but he stays with the play and chases down Fitzpatrick from behind to get him down for a one-yard loss.
This was a great performance over a very limited number of opportunities by Huff. Expect Gregg to get his snap count back above 50.0% against Buffalo on Sunday.
Franklin-Myers played a season-high 53.6% of the defensive snaps against Miami after averaging a 40.1% portion over his first four games. He remained as solid as usual, collecting three pressures over 19 pass-rush snaps for a pressure rate of 15.8%, exceeding the interior defensive line average of 7.1% in a fifth consecutive game to begin his Jets career.
On the season, Franklin-Myers’ pressure rate of 18.6% trails only Pittsburgh’s Stephon Tuitt (20.5%) among interior defensive linemen. He is tied for 10th at the position in pressures (16) despite ranking 77th in pass-rush snaps (86).
As the 4i-technique on this play, Franklin-Myers punishes the right guard for his extremely wide punch, getting both hands into the chest and absolutely destroying him. Tarell Basham does the same against the right tackle. With the right side completely demolished, Fitzpatrick is forced to dump the ball off early.
Franklin-Myers stands up as the 9-tech on this play, rushing against the tight end. The tight end oversets to the outside, so Franklin-Myers uses his inside arm to continue moving him outside and create a clear inside lane to Fitzpatrick. Franklin-Myers anticipates that Fitzpatrick will attempt to scramble outside, so he refrains from overpursuing and stays ready to shed his blocker and play the outside. Fitzpatrick tries to escape. Franklin-Myers grabs his jersey, but Fitzpatrick somehow gets the ball into his left hand and flicks it out to Adam Shaheen.
Franklin-Myers may have overpursued just a tad, as a bit less penetration would have left him in a better position to play the outside, but it’s a great rush nonetheless. Fantastic play by Fitzpatrick to break the sack. You can see that Franklin-Myers appears to share a word with Fitzpatrick after the play, probably expressing some bewilderment at what he managed to pull off.
While the majority of his impact this season has come in the passing game, as you would expect for an undersized defensive tackle (only 288 pounds), Franklin-Myers occasionally tosses in a quality stop on the ground. Here, Franklin-Myers lowers his shoulder against the pulling tight end and sends him into the ground while staying afoot. He combines with Williams on the stop for a two-yard gain (strangely, Franklin-Myers was not credited with a tackle here).
Franklin-Myers and Huff each continue to show more and more promise as the season progresses. Perhaps the Jets have a couple of long-term keepers in the two unheralded Joe Douglas pickups.