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NY Jets offense been historically bad, hoping to turn age vs. Bills

FLORHAM PARK — After the Jets failed to score an offensive touchdown in Sunday’s loss to the Titans, the exasperation was etched all over Quincy Enunwa’s face. And when the downtrodden receiver was asked how frustrating it is to repeatedly settle for field goals, he perfectly summed up the state of the Jets’ offense. 

“Last week they asked me for a silver lining,” Enunwa said. “We’re putting Jason Myers in the Pro Bowl.” 

That’s no knock on Myers, the Jets’ kicker, is having a great season. But the fact that he’s become a legitimate candidate for team MVP illustrates just how broken the Jets’ offense has been. 

They are ranked 30th in the NFL in passing and 19th in rushing, giving them the 30th overall ranked offense in football — only the Bills and Cardinals are worse. 

It’s become obvious that there’s a lack of confidence in offensive coordinator Jeremy Bates, who replaced the fired John Morton before this season. After games, players evade questions, or answer cryptically when asked why the offense isn’t working. 

And before last week’s loss to the Titans, running back Isaiah Crowell even criticized the pass-heavy play-calling.  

Bates has acknowledged, repeatedly, that the results are disappointing. But he continues to put his focus on the next task at hand: scoring on Buffalo’s defense. 

“This profession is about grinding,” Bates said Thursday. “You’ve got to move to the next week. You can’t look at last week and lose sleep on it. You’ve got to turn the page. Obviously, we’re disappointed. We’re not happy with our outcomes. But the opposing team’s not going to feel sorry for us so we’ve got to keep going.”

Perhaps the likely return of Sam Darnold will help. But he was there for the first three games of this losing streak. And the offensive problems are bigger than just the quarterback. 

The Jets are in a historically bad stretch. This is the first time in franchise history they’ve gone five straight games scoring one touchdown or fewer, according to ESPN. 

The biggest problem? The Jets have the worst red zone offense in the league, by far, scoring touchdowns only 36.67 percent of the time they get inside the opponent’s 20. The next worst team are the 49ers, who convert 44.74 percent of the time. 

“It’s not from a lack of trying,” coach Todd Bowles said earlier this week. “It just hasn’t happened and it’s extremely frustrating that we can’t get touchdown instead of field goals.”

Todd Bowles on job

Things have not gone well for Bowles, who is expected to be fired after missing the playoffs in all four years as coach. But he said Thursday that the job hasn’t been more challenging than he thought it would be upon his January 2015 hiring.

“No, it’s normal,” Bowles said. “It’s a coaching job.”

It was then pointed out to Bowles that four seasons missing the playoffs couldn’t have been what he expected when he took the job.

“I anticipated a lot of things in my life that didn’t go quite as planned,” Bowles said. “But that doesn’t make it any more challenging than the next job.”

Kelvin Beachum honored 

Jets left tackle Kelvin Beachum was named the team’s nominee for the 2018 Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year Award. The award recognizes a player for community service work and on-field excellence. 

“It’s great to play football,” Beachum said. “But at the same time I’ve been blessed with the ability to give back and it’s something I value quite a bit.”

Beachum’s focuses in community service are ending hunger, helping those in need with clean water and assisting young minorities get STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) opportunities.

“Those things started from my childhood,” Beachum said. “I grew up poor and our parents hid it from us. But as I got older … I realized that I can find a way to be able to give back to those who experienced some of those things that I experienced as a kid.” 

Email: vasqueza@northjersey.com

More NY Jets news

THE FINISH: Can Sam Darnold salvage something from Jets season? What to expect in the final 4 games

THE FUTURE: Which key pending free agents should NY Jets keep?

THE RETURN: It looks like rookie quarterback Sam Darnold is trending toward playing Sunday in Buffalo

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