Marty Mornhinweg took full blame for the timeout call that negated a tying touchdown against the Green Bay Packers on Sunday.
Yeah, we know it was Sheldon Richardson who called the timeout but let’s not cloud the issue, there’s a story here.
Mornhinweg didn’t like the way Bilal Powell, lined up, so he tried to get Rex Ryan’s attention to have him call for a timeout.
The Jets situation was a fourth-and-4 from the Packers 36 with just over 5 minutes remaining and were trailing 31-24.
So Mornhinweg ran down the sideline towards Rex Ryan making the timeout signal with his hands and if you watched the game, you saw Rex actually moving towards Marty, but…
The play clock had dropped under 15 seconds, shutting off the coach-to-quarterback radio connection — per NFL rules So, Mornhinweg couldn’t communicate with Geno Smith anymore.
Rex had already switched to the defensive headset to prepare, just in case the Jets’ offense didn’t convert.
Okay, following so far? Alright, so as marty is signaling, walking towards Rex he then sees that Geno Smith had fixed the alignment, so he stopped calling for the timeout.
“We’re rolling; we’re good. I didn’t even get Rex’s attention yet,” Mornhinweg said. “That’s the scenario.” Marty commented.
Defensive lineman Sheldon Richardson saw Mornhinweg trying to get the timeout, then Rex Ryan blocked his further view, he never saw Marty stop calling for it because now Rex was between Sheldon and Marty to the referees left.
So Richardson, on the right of the referee, leaned over to the official standing in front of him and “whispered” for the for the timeout.
The timeout was granted and whistles blew — negating Jeremy Kerley’s glorious, game tying, touchdown catch.
“Sheldon needs to take no accountability for that,” Mornhinweg said. “He was only trying to help.”
“If you think you can help,” Ryan said, “you react like that.”
Only a head coach or player on the field can technically call a timeout. Officials are instructed to not turn their attention from the field to verify who’s making the call.
Rex Ryan said it “happens more than you think” that timeouts are granted to another coach or player on the sideline.
Ryan had made a TO call while in Baltimore, he was the defensive coordinator. In 2007, the Baltimore Ravens stopped New England patriots quarterback Tom Brady on a fourth-and-1, but the play was negated when Rex Ryan called a timeout just before the snap. The Patriots later scored the winning touchdown on that drive.
“You do it to try to help your team out,” Ryan said of his call, “but obviously that backfired.”
Mornhinweg has learned;
“I’ve got to do a better job of communicating, and then trusting Geno,” he said. “I’ve got to trust Geno to get everything fixed before the 40-second clock (runs down).”
The Jets made a first down on the next play, but failed to capitalize further, scoring only 3 points in all of the second half, but worse, failed to stop the Packers at all.
Then There was the interception at the end of the first half in which Geno Smith was hit as he threw to 6-foot-7 tight end Zach Sudfeld who was outleaped by the 5-11 Tramon Williams. Sudfeld failed to be aggressive, failed to use his side, failed to knock it down or out of Williams hands.
An interception by David Harris was also negated when the Jets had too many men on the field and Damon Harrison couldn’t get to the sideline in time. Then Jason babin was pushed into Rodgers leading babin to be called for roughing the passer.
“As a team, you go and you learn from this, I’ve seen some teams that, when you have a game like this, it can turn your season on a positive note. That’s certainly the way I hope we respond to this game.” -Rex Ryan