|New York's playoff hopes are somewhere between slim and none. (US PRESSWIRE)|
By Ryan Wilson
The Jets are in a bad way and it's all their doing. The tenacious Rex Ryan defense that had been a hallmark of this Jets team the previous two seasons has been inconsistent in 2011, as has the running game. And those two shortcomings have only exacerbated the quarterback situation. Specifically, the annual conversation about Mark Sanchez's abilities to lead the Jets, and how soon until the organization should throw up their hands and move on.
For now, New York is ninth in the AFC behind the Titans and Raiders, and they need a confluence of remarkable luck to sneak into the No. 6 and final wild-card spot, currently held by the Bengals.
Ryan understands as much which is why he asks that we "light a candle" for the Jets' playoff chances. Football Outsiders puts those chances at 9.5 percent.
So exactly what has to happen?
The Jets can clinch a wild card spot with:
1) NYJ win + CIN loss + TEN loss or tie + OAK loss or tie
2) NYJ win + CIN loss + TEN loss or tie + DEN loss or tie
There is good new, though: whatever happens, Rex says that Sanchez is "his guy" going forward. Of course, that's what Ryan has to say at this point in the proceedings. After the season, everything could change. After all, in that same interview, Ryan said that Brian Schotteheimer had his full support. On Sunday, however, ESPN's Adam Schefter reported that Norv Turner, who's set to be fired by the Broncos any day now, is expected to be one of the Jets' top targets to coordinate the offense in 2012. Another possible target: Josh McDaniels, currently the Rams' offensive coordinator, who will likely be out of work when St. Louis moves on from head coach Steve Spagnuolo.
Schottenheimer, incidentally, could be in line for a head coaching gig, even though he's had his issues as New York's OC.
Follow all the Week 17 action live: Inactives | Scoreboard
1 p.m. ET games:
DET-GB | TEN-HOU | IND-JAC | NYJ-MIA | CHI-MIN | BUF-NE | CAR-NO | WAS-PHI | SF-STL
4 p.m. ET games:
TB-ATL | BAL-CIN | PIT-CLE | SEA-ARI | KC-DEN | SD-OAK
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