Jets offense hoping to finally solve ‘frustrating’ penalty problem


The Jets already had touchdown and turnover issues that needed addressing, and now they’ve added a recent penalty dilemma to fix, too.

Seven of their eight penalties in Sunday’s loss to the Raiders occurred while on offense, which means 12 of 16 across the past two games have been committed by that unit.

The “frustrating” part of the trend, offensive coordinator Nathaniel Hackett said, stems from most of those happening “during combat” — the Jets have arrived at the right spot, executing the play correctly up until that moment, but will still draw the flag.

“And then in the heat of the battle, that happens,” Hackett said. “They didn’t mean to. They weren’t trying to. But those things happen. So for us as coaches, we just put our heads down and we just continually coach them on the details, the techniques so they can stay in great position and execute their block.”

Hackett and the other Jets coaches have pointed out the mistakes while watching film with players, corrected the details during meetings and then focused on technique during practice windows.

Jets offensive coordinator is still trying to work on fixing the team's "frustrating" penalty problem.
Jets offensive coordinator is still trying to work on fixing the team’s “frustrating” penalty problem.
Corey Sipkin for the NY Post

Referees attend practices, and head coach Robert Saleh receives a report to evaluate following the sessions.

Maybe the footwork was off.

Maybe the technique.

In the first quarter Sunday, C.J. Uzomah’s holding penalty nearly backed the Jets out of field-goal range, and another holding call on the next drive wiped out Breece Hall’s touchdown. Michael Carter was called for a chop-block penalty early in the second half that erased a third-down conversion, too. He was released two days later.

Sometimes, Saleh said Wednesday, a Jets penalty looked like it shouldn’t have been called. But other times, they’re “just plain as day.” Left guard Laken Tomlinson, who was flagged for holding Sunday, told The Post that the Jets settling into a rhythm, unlike practices, will prevent those in-game penalties. They need to find a flow, which at the same time could unlock the offense.

The Jets just don’t want those miscues to occur during key spots, Tomlinson said.

“It’s not something we’re panicking about,” tight end Tyler Conklin said, “but obviously something that needs to be cleaned up and something that we’re detailing everyday.”

When asked about the offense’s players-only meeting Tuesday, Hackett called players holding other players accountable “powerful” and “something that we need” as the Jets try to snap their touchdown drought — currently at 11 quarters plus an overtime — Sunday against the Bills.

Even Hackett said he never experienced a touchdown drought like this before.

“We just need to get over that hump, we need to get that first touchdown in a long time,” Hackett said, “and I think that is really going to help us.”

The Jets’ injury report remained the same as Wednesday.

OL Billy Turner (ankle), LB Chazz Surratt (ankle) and LB Sam Eguavoen (hip) didn’t practice, while OL Mekhi Becton (knee), DL Will McDonald IV (ankle) and WR Garrett Wilson (elbow) were limited.

OL Duane Brown (hip), DL John Franklin-Myers (knee), LB Quincy Williams (knee) and TE Kenny Yeboah (hamstring) were full participants.

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