Henne latest to spotlight NFL's emerging talent at quarterback
The effective use of hyperbole by the first-year Jets head coach aside, all I know is that when
That was a statement game turned in by second-year Dolphins quarterback
Henne was the unquestioned star of a fourth quarter that featured five lead changes and five touchdowns. Wildcat or no Wildcat, Henne's role in the Dolphins' 31-27 comeback win went a long way towards announcing Sanchez isn't the only promising young gun in the AFC East.
"You always dream as a kid of these comebacks,'' said Henne, the Dolphins 2008 second-round pick who was making his second career start. "I watched
The likes of Montana, Marino and
The 2004 class gave us
To be sure, there are still misses-in-the-making with
Quality young arms abound in 2009. And who knows, maybe some day in the future, some frustrated head coach will stand up in the postgame and lament that his defense made some emerging quarterback "look like Chad Henne.''
• Watching Monday night's thriller, I was struck by what a difference a Chad makes in Miami. In the Dolphins' Week 2 Monday-nighter against the Colts, Miami lost by four points, 27-23, despite quarterback
The Dolphins won by four points at home this time, despite controlling the ball for only 33:35. Miami had 413 yards of total offense against the Jets, which was very similar to its final total against the Colts (403).
The difference was that with Henne, the Dolphins had a passing game capable of threatening a defense downfield, and Miami's 262 yards of passing (
You can't win by ball-control offense alone in the NFL. You need a quarterback who can threaten a defense vertically, and for that reason alone, Miami is better off with the strong-armed Henne than the softer-throwing Pennington.
• Rex Ryan is going to be entertaining after both victory and defeat, but I think we got a sense for just how colorful things will be in those postgame settings that follow a New York loss. Ryan's disgust at his team's defensive performance gave little doubt that within him still beats the heart of the defensive coordinator he was for so long in Baltimore.
"First off, it was a complete embarrassment by our defense and by me,'' Ryan said in his opening postgame remarks after the Jets (3-2) lost their second in a row to fall back into a first-place tie with New England in the AFC East. "I've never been involved in a game like that in my life.''
Ryan went on to say he was "at a loss for words with our defensive performance,'' called it "a horrendous day for our defense,'' and noted that he had "been a part of some bad performances by defenses before, but not this bad.''
Later, he added: "Our biggest problem today was stopping the pass more than anything. It's unbelievable. We couldn't stop the run or pass today. Other than that, we played great. It was ridiculous. We tried a million different groupings and nothing worked.''
It might say that
• I expected
• It's obvious that much of Ryan's criticism of his own defense stemmed from how much credit he got last year when his Ravens defense totally shut down Miami's Wildcat offense in both a 27-13 Week 7 win and that 27-9 throttling of the Dolphins in the first round of the AFC playoffs.
But Ryan and his Jets defense couldn't tame the Wildcat this time, and I think it's because this is a better version of Miami's favorite form of "trickeration.'' The Dolphins are almost fanatically committed to the Wildcat, rather than dabbling with it as the gimmick offense it seems to be in other NFL locales (Philadelphia, for one).
Miami now has a legitimate passing threat in the Wildcat in rookie
For NFL fans, the best news is that the Dolphins-Jets rematch is in just three weeks, on Nov. 1 at the Meadowlands. I'm sure Ryan and his defense can't wait to make amends.
• Ryan and Jets safety
"Against a second-year clown quarterback, we didn't affect him enough,'' Pace was quoted as saying. "I guess you have to give him credit. The defense lost the game today.''
So you're giving the "clown quarterback'' begrudging credit, but making it clear that he didn't win the game for Miami, the Jets defense just lost it? Faint praise, indeed.
We can also count Pace among those who aren't big on the Wildcat. "I can't respect that stuff, all that Wildcat,'' said Pace, according to the
There's some nonsense involved here, Calvin. But it doesn't have much to do with the Dolphins offense.
That might result in a full season of twisting in the wind for both the Redskins'
• Isn't it just logical that
It's not as if Browns head coach
• What to make of the Cardinals defense, which through four games ranks dead last against the pass (303.1 yards per game), but ranks first against the run (71.0)? Arizona's pass defense just got shredded for 370 yards or more by
Then again, Arizona has confounded us before. The Cardinals were 22nd against the pass last season, and still made the Super Bowl.