It’s a play that will go down in Jets lore and ironically illustrates Mark Sanchez’s struggles so far this season. Gang Green still has a bitter taste lingering in their mouths following a 49-19 drubbing in Week 11 by the archrival New England Patriots, a game in which they surrendered a franchise record 35 points in the second quarter alone.
As the flood gates opened Thanksgiving Night, the most baffling moment came when Sanchez mishandled a snap under center and inexplicably slid into the backside of offensive lineman Brandon Moore with the ball falling into the grasp of New England safety Steve Gregory who returned it 32 yards for a touchdown.
In speaking with reporters this week, Moore failed to find an ounce of humor in the slapstick moment and his quarterback is more than ready to put the blunder behind them.
“It’s embarrassing because that’s one you (messed) up the play and I’m trying to do the right thing, Sanchez told Jets beat writers on Wednesday. It’s not like I’m trying to force something and I start to slide and I slide right in the worst spot I possibly could, right into Brandon Moore.”
Sanchez’s miscue was just one of the Jets five turnovers last Thursday Night with the Patriots scoring 21 points in a span of just 52 seconds during a second quarter that will forever live in infamy.
“It’s the way it goes and it will probably be on a blooper reel for awhile,” admitted Sanchez. “That’s just part of playing. You play long enough and eventually a couple plays like that will happen. Just try to avoid them and move on.”
New York dressed only one healthy quarterback last week with Tim Tebow sidelined due to fractured ribs, while the coaching staff surprisingly didn’t activate third string signal-caller Greg McElroy. Luckily for the Jets, Sanchez’s helmet-to-behind hit didn’t cause him any harm, but appeared to give the fourth year pro quite a jolt.
“No, I wasn’t hurt,” Sanchez said. “I guess more stunned than anything. Just like a car accident I was like, ‘Woah, what just happened?’ Then the ball was gone it was weird.”