The laughter has reached the point of no return, when your face starts hurting because the knee-slapping hilarity just won’t stop.
The Jets are much worse than just a bad football team now. They’re a laughingstock careening towards historic ineptitude.
Giving Adam Gase his walking papers won’t be an elixir, but it’s a common-sense first step toward shedding this franchise’s punchline status.
Otherwise, the chuckles will sound like a bass drum.
Gase wakes up Monday as the head coach of the only winless team in the NFL through six weeks; a sad, desperate, salesman quickly running out of suckers that will buy his pitch.
Gang Green’s latest blooper reel — a 24-0 wire-to-wire loss to the Dolphins on Sunday — was no more painful to watch than the first five defeats.
It followed a familiar script littered with poor play-calling, nonsensical decision-making and awful execution.
There’s an art to being this terrible. The Jets' average margin of defeat in their six games: 18.3 points.
“We haven’t done anything well this year at all,” Captain Obvious said after he fell to 30-41 as an NFL head coach. “We hurt ourselves so much.”
Gase, who is now 9-27 on the road, has become a master of losing with his special brew of brutal play. The Jets fell to 0-6 for only the second time in their 61-year existence — and first since a bespectacled, balding chap who went by the name of Rich Kotite led the charge for a 1-15 squad 24 years ago.
Gase capped a week when he supposedly pondered relinquishing play-calling duties by getting undressed by the team that fired him less than two years ago. The Dolphins (3-3), set free after being held captive by this charlatan, looked revived and rejuvenated with a real leader of men guiding them.
Gase, who left Hard Rock Stadium a loser for a second consecutive season, has more double-digit losses (32) than total wins as a head coach. He’s lost 26 games by at least two touchdowns and 20 games by at least 18 points.
His offense has scored a grand total of six touchdowns in six games. By every objective measure, he is the clear-cut worst offensive mind in all the land.
The Jets averaged 2.9 yards per play as they fell behind 21-0 by halftime. They went 0-for-12 on third downs before some garbage-time stat-padding bumped it up to 2-for-17. They managed 106 net yards with less than four minutes to go in the third quarter before the Dolphins started making dinner reservations and gave them some courtesy yardage in the fourth quarter.
“I didn’t think it was lifeless,” Gase said. “Offensively, we were frustrated.”
Gase’s offense, which was circling the drain in nearly every statistical category entering the game, went three-and-out in six of their first nine drives. Flacco mixed in an interception and Braden Mann added two of his 10 punts during that stretch.
Pro tip: It’s never good when your punter walks on the field 10 times.
Oh, and Flacco took a 28-yard sack, too.
Gregg Williams' defense held Ryan Fitzpatrick & Co. to just three points in the second half, but the damage was done before intermission. The Jets couldn’t stop Myles Gaskin on the ground and fell apart in the red zone to help dig a three-touchdown hole that they didn’t come close to climbing out of.
Along the way, Gase exhibited unofficially Reason No. 1,000,000,000,000 why he has little clue how to manage a game. For some unknown reason, Gase trotted out kicker Sam Ficken to try a career-long 55-yard field goal with a minute remaining in the third quarter while his team was trailing 24-0.
Evidently, Gase didn’t have a calculator or pen and paper handy. Otherwise, he would have figured out that his team would still be trailing by three scores even if Ficken made the moon-shot field goal. He missed it, in case you were wondering.
“Nobody’s going to feel sorry for us,” Frank Gore said. “We can’t f---ing wait until the fourth quarter to start playing.”
Somebody might want to whisper in wily ol' veteran’s ear that his team doesn’t actually start playing in the fourth quarter. The game usually is so out of reach by that point that opponents take their foot off the gas. The Jets have been outscored 185-75 in the first weeks, conjuring up images of some of the worst teams of this generation.
The product on the field stinks as much as the angst off it. Gase admitted he wasn’t pleased with defensive coordinator Williams' subtle jab at the offense in the run-up to the shutout.
“Right now, I feel like our players are doing such a good job trying to get things righted,” Gase said. “Everything we say, it matters. He understood that we’ve got to set the right example.”
New York Jets coaches past and present
The next time Gase sets the right example might very well be the first.
In a week that began with cutting Le’Veon Bell and ended with trading respected leader Steve McLendon to the Buccaneers after the game, there are few folks in the organization that respect this head coach.
He’s a Dead Man Walking, hoping for relief that isn’t coming.
It makes sense to put him out of his misery and quiet some of the laughter.