Math Doesn't Matter to the Same Old Jets

Mathematically alive but dead on the field

By Josh Alper
|  Monday, Dec 21, 2009  |  Updated 12:00 PM EDT
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The Jets 2009 Season in Pictures

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Sunday morning's New York Times profiled Jets linebacker Bart Scott and learned that Scott picked up his trash talking skills by watching professional wrestling. It's fitting that a member of the Jets would look to something scripted for inspiration. Just as Hulk Hogan always found a reserve of strength when things looked their bleakest, the Jets always find a way to blow things when their chances burn brightest. 

It gave me no joy to point out that you could see this coming a mile away, but what else is a seasoned Jets watcher to do other than wait for the other shoe to drop directly after the Jets shoot themselves in it? Rich Cimini of the Daily News compared Sunday's loss to "Groundhog Day," his colleague Gary Myers wonders if the team is haunted and both men make far too much sense when you take into account the fact that the Jets have different players, coaches, schemes and opponents bringing them the same result over and over again. 

Even Rex Ryan, he of the bold vows not to be the Same Old Jets, has changed his tune. He called the Jets' playoff hopes dead on Sunday afternoon even though the math says they are still breathing. Ryan's right and the math is wrong.

This is a team that can't kick a field goal, a team that can't stop letting their rookie quarterback kill them on windy days and can't cover Tony Gonzalez in the end zone when everyone in the entire world, even children in Asia who have no idea what the NFL is, knows that Gonzalez is going to be the target on fourth down. How can anyone with an honest bone in their body say that that team is going to win two must-win games against two teams who are going to the playoffs?

Sure, any given Sunday and all that means that you'll watch and allow yourself to dream a little bit when Thomas Jones puts them up 14-10 against the Colts next weekend. But just as you knew in your heart that King Kong Bundy's big splash wasn't going to keep the Hulkster down for a three-count, you know that the Jets will simply find a way to hand the game over and push us closer to the Knicks and the long wait for Spring Training.

Josh Alper is a writer living in New York City and is a contributor to FanHouse.com and ProFootballTalk.com in addition to his duties for NBCNewYork.com.

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