Playing local rivals Leicester Falcons the jets fell to 0-5 in their second meeting against the Leicester Falcons.
The game started off with an interesting twist as the Jets Captains were also joined by recent transfer Dom Olney as he led out the handshakes as one of the Falcons captains. The first drive started out promising for the Jets as new starting QB & former Coventry University Jet Josh Randall led the team into Leicester half before the Leicester defence tightened. Leicester replied on their first series when their stop and start offence was jolted into life by a superb run from gadget American Taylor Brown, who was to be a constant thorn in the Jets side until taken off by injury.
Leicester then got the ball after a quick 3 and out by Coventry, keeping the drive alive when their QB Troy Lee, seemingly in the process of being sacked by OLB Sam Johns, was able to flick the ball out to Taylor Brown for a short gain. However poor discipline set the Falcons back to 4th and 35 from the Jets 37, with the go ahead shot for the touchdown picked off by Jets captain Josh Cooper in the endzone, starting the offence off at the 20 instead. The Jets struggled to move the ball downfield and the Falcons added 2 scores in the 2nd quarter, one of which was a second rushing TD for Taylor Brown.
The second half saw ex-Jets QB AJ Mepstead go under centre, which marked an upturn in the fortunes of the Jets defence, after the first drive was capped off with a good run for the TD and Browns 3rd TD putting the Falcons up 32-0, they were unable to get the ball into the Jets redzone, with a huge pick from TJ Chieza the highlight. The quarter ran down with Josh Randall completing a 20 yard pass to Ben Fisher, who was tackled by a vicious hit from Brown which also saw him injure himself. Bizarrely Fisher was called short, despite being hit as he stretched for the endzone and being knocked through the pylon, questions on the officials ability to keep up with the play were asked. On 1st and goal the Jets couldn’t advance and ended the drive with an interception.
The game finished with a series of drives where Mepstead attempted to connect with Olney, resulting in a dropped interception by Cooper and another that saw him landing just out of bounds. Rookie QB James Southall took over for the final drive but there was to be no consolation score.
Whilst the Jets won’t be pleased with this performance, especially having held the Falcons to 2TDs at home in the first 3 quarters, however the team fought throughout and didn’t capitulate at the end, some strong individual performances by players such as TJ Chieza and Matt Ball are also positives.
The Jets now have a week off before heading back up to Nottingham for a crunch game against the Caesars.
Photo by Peter Grimbly.