Pretty much every team has that one play that defines their season, that “signature moment” if you will. The Baltimore Ravens had a few in their run to Lombardi. From “hey diddle diddle Ray Rice up the middle!” to the game tying touchdown pass in the playoff game against Denver, it’s almost as if the Ravens were a team of destiny.
If you look at the Jets’ signature moments from 2012, you could say they were a team of destiny as well, destined for failure. Here are a few plays that I feel sum the 2012 Jets up in a nutshell:
Week 3: Darrelle Revis Tears his ACL on a non-contact play. Coming back from a concussion in week 1, Revis didn’t look like he was 100% in Miami. Then he lost his footing on the crappy turf in Sun Life Stadium and was screaming in agony. I feared the worst and when I saw him go down, and a day later it was revealed that he had a torn ACL and would miss the remainder of the season. But he might’ve been able to play in the Super Bowl, anyone else remember that? Another honorable mention from this game is the play where they lined Tebow up as a tight end, Sanchez threw it to him and it bounced off his helmet.
Week 4: Santonio Holmes fumbles the ball on a play where he was injured and Carlos Rodgers returned it for a touchdown. Holmes injured his lisfranc on another non-contact injury. He was in so much pain that he simply gave up the ball as if the play was over. Carlos Rodgers kicked it around, scooped it up and returned the fumble for a touchdown. It had everything that defined our season: A season ending injury, a fumble, and a defensive touchdown.
Week 7: The drop. This is where the season really took a turn for the worse. Tied at 23 late in the game, the Jets recover a fumble deep in New England territory with a chance to win the game. Stephen Hill drops a rare perfect pass from Mark Sanchez on third down, forcing them to settle for a field goal. The Patriots kicked a game tying field goal to send the game into overtime on the ensuing possession and then ultimately won after kicking a field goal and forcing Sanchez to fumble. Had Hill caught the pass it would’ve at least been a first down and they could’ve either scored a touchdown or killed more clock to give the Pats less time to tie the game.
Week 12: The Buttfumble. We’ve all seen it by now, it is the 13 time worst of the worst champion on ESPN’s “Not Top Ten” (Marking the first time the Jets were 13 time champions for anything) Like the Santonio Holmes fumble this play had a little bit of everything, a fumble, a defensive touchdown and years of humility. The only thing it was missing was an injury, and at that point I think a lot of people wouldn’t have minded if Sanchez got injured. On a personal side note I was at this game. My friend and I ditched Thanksgiving dinner early to witness the buttfumble live. At a first glance we thought he was down by contact but replays would show that Brandon Moore’s ass stopped his slide and hence the buttfumble was born. Also the fact that we had to deal with a bunch of screaming Patriots fans in our section the whole time didn’t help either.
Week 15: The “I’ve run out of names for fumbles” fumble. The voice of Mike Tirico still echoes in my head, “Low snap! Kicked around! On the ground! That’s the way this game should end, that’s the way the Jets season should end. Ugly! And a loss!” The call by Tirico says it all really. It seemed only fitting that play would be the one to end our season. It was a very ugly season and there were a lot of losses. I was at an Applebee’s for this game and I was the only one there with enough dignity to wear my Jets hat. Everyone in the restaurant burst out with laughter after the play. I immediately got up and slammed my hat to the ground as hard as I could. Rex Ryan would’ve been proud. On the bright side though, I got a lot of free sympathy drinks that night, but they would only ease the pain til I woke up the next morning with a glorious New York Jets hangover.
Follow Chris Hecker on Twitter @alfonzoooooooo