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You couldn't swing a dead cat this summer without hitting someone telling you that it was imperative that Mark Sanchez showed marked improvement as a quarterback this season. Because of that we thought we'd check in weekly to see how the Sanchize is progressing toward that goal.
Sunday was a very good day for most of the Jets.
They destroyed the Jaguars 32-3 and didn't allow the visitors to enter the red zone once in the entire game. They scored a touchdown on the first drive and the game was never really in doubt from that point forward.
The only doubt came courtesy of Mark Sanchez's right arm. Sanchez got off to a terrific start, completing four passes on that first scoring drive including a touchdown to Santonio Holmes and completed his first 12 passes overall.
The only problem is that two of those 12 passes were caught by the Jaguars and those two interceptions kept the game closer than it had any right to be until the third quarter. Sanchez's picks gave a bad team hope that the defense quickly took away, but there's no way around the fact that those turnovers were unacceptable.
Both picks came on plays that saw Sanchez lock onto one receiver long enough for the Jaguars to figure out exactly what was about to happen. They were bad enough that the sparse crowd at the Meadowlands made their displeasure clear with loud boos even though the Jets were always comfortably ahead of Jacksonville.
Sanchez was better in the second half and he threw another touchdown to Dustin Keller, but the game was heavily slanted in the Jets' favor by that point. It should have been over at halftime, but it wasn't because Sanchez simply didn't play well enough.
It isn't lost on us that there's something ridiculous about finding fault in Sanchez's performance in a game that the Jets won by 29 points and featured a first quarter touchdown for the first time since Grover Cleveland's first term. The last one was actually last October, but it certainly felt like it had been more than a century.
The fact that it is a bit ridiculous doesn't mean that it isn't true, though. The Jets defense overwhelmed a bad team run by an awful quarterback on Sunday and that is the only reason they were able to overcome Sanchez's two terrible turnovers.
If Luke McCown is merely competent on Sunday, this could have easily become the latest in a long list of Jets losses in games they should have won. That's the biggest takeaway from Sanchez's Week Two performance.
Sanchez doesn't need to be perfect for the Jets to win games this season, but they need him to be better than he was in Week Two. That's why the Meter is tilting down this week even while the Jets are clearly headed in the right direction.