David Harris says film of Jets’ defense was ‘disgusting’
NEW YORK (AP) — David Harris gave two thumbs down — and a scathing review — to the film of the New York Jets’ suddenly struggling defense.
The veteran linebacker is normally low-key and reserved, but was uncharacteristically critical while discussing the Jets’ 34-20 loss to the Oakland Raiders in which New York gave up 451 yards in total offense. Derek Carr threw four touchdown passes as the Raiders took a 28-6 lead early in the third quarter.
“We watched the film and it was disgusting to look at,” Harris said during a conference call Monday. “Everybody in that room had the same feeling. I can promise you it won’t happen again.”
Coach Todd Bowles echoed Harris’ sentiment, also saying it was a “disgusting” effort. The Jets, who entered the game ranked No. 2 in total defense, had no takeaways for the second straight game and missed 19 tackles, according to the statistical analysis website Pro Football Focus.
Perhaps the most egregious example Sunday was in the third quarter when Taiwan Jones took a short pass from Carr, broke at least four tackle attempts and zipped into the end zone for a 59-yard touchdown.
“It alarms everybody,” Harris said. “We know that we’re not that defense. You can believe that we’ll get it corrected this week in practice, and I think everybody will come out with a new focus this week.”
While the offense was dealing with a quarterback switch because of Ryan Fitzpatrick’s thumb injury, the defense did little to keep the Jets in it in the first half. The Raiders rolled to 252 yards in the first two quarters and went 3 for 4 on third downs. New York also managed no sacks for the game.
“We just did a poor job of tackling,” Harris said. “The effort was poor all the way across the board. We had way too many guys not hustling on every play and it hurt us.”
Harris said the Jets came out “flat” from the first play of the game and it just snowballed on the defense from there. Bowles was equally critical after the game, and again Monday after watching the film.
“We didn’t play well and I’ll say that a million times,” Bowles said. “We know we didn’t play well.”
Cornerback Antonio Cromartie acknowledged Sunday he had a lousy performance, allowing a 36-yard touchdown to Michael Crabtree and a 49-yarder to Andre Holmes, although he thought Holmes pushed off on the play.
Linebacker Demario Davis was badly fooled on Jones’ touchdown. He appeared to have him squared up in the open field before Jones faked out Davis and was on his way.
Cornerback-turned-safety Marcus Williams also had some troubles with missed tackles while filling in for the injured Calvin Pryor.
One of the only bright spots was — who else? — cornerback Darrelle Revis, who did a solid job while mostly defending rookie Amari Cooper and holding him to five catches for 46 yards.
Harris insisted he was confident the tackling and effort issues will not continue.
“I know what type of guys we have on this defense in the locker room,” he said. “We take pride in being a good defense here in New York. I know these guys well. I’ve been around them, and I know it won’t happen again.”
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