The Jets started their blowout loss to the Patriots in Week 7 with an interception two plays into the game. Since then, the Jets have opened their last four games in a row with touchdowns.
So what's different? Opening drives by NFL teams are often scripted. The ensuing one might be as well.
But quarterback Sam Darnold isn't crediting a script for the Jets' early-game successes. Instead, it's all about building the right beat coming out of the gate for Gang Green's offense, the quarterback said on Monday.
"For us I think it's about being able to find a rhythm there on the first drive," Darnold said. "Obviously, game planning those things is a big part in it, but also, even when we find our rhythm in other drives when it's not scripted, whenever we do go down the field and score, I feel like our whole offense, whenever we get those... whenever we get that first, first down and then we get another one, I feel like our offense just kind of gets in a rhythm there and I feel like we get a lot more comfortable and we can kind of get a flow going."
But that's not an attack on the so-called "script" created by head coach Adam Gase heading into games. In fact, Gase backed Darnold's sentiments and said even if there's a plan, things often change. During the Jets' 34-17 win against the Redskins, factors caused the coach to quickly start re-writing the plan on the fly after about three plays, he recalled.
Instead of complimenting the early gameplan, Gase gave the credit to his players on the field and their execution.
"What we're calling is almost irrelevant. It's just kind of guys dong the right thing," Gase said. "Guys are doing a better job as far as understanding how each other play.I think that's just time on task, I think they've done a good job of transferring practice stuff to games."
The Jets will hope to extend their stretch of opening drive scores to five when they host the Oakland Raiders in Week 12. New York will also hope they'll find a way to continue scoring later on in individual games as well. Despite their four-game streak of scoring right away, the Jets have split those games with a 2-2 record, with both wins coming in their past two outings.