Mark Sanchez great under pressure vs. Texans

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - NOVEMBER 21: Mark Sanchez  of the New York Jets throws against the Houston Texans during their game on November 21, 2010 at the New Meadowlands Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey. (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)

At the start of the year, the one thing most said would keep the New York Jets from reaching the Super bowl was the play of quarterback Mark Sanchez.

But it’s Sanchez’s play (which, albeit, is highly erratic at times) of late that now has people believing in Gang Green.

In the Jets’ thrilling 30-27 come-from-behind win over the Texans on Sunday, Sanchez did some incredibly things under pressure. According to ESPN Stats & Information, when the Texans sent five or more pass-rushers at the Jets’ QB, Sanchez completed 12-of-18 passes for 189 yards and three touchdowns. He also didn’t throw any interceptions under that amount of pressure, compiled a 141.0 passer rating and scrambled twice for 22 yards.

When the Texans sent six pass-rushers, Sanchez completed five-of-seven passes and three touchdowns, which is incredible.

“This is a different guy,” Jets coach Rex Ryan said. “He’s got great experience, 25 games as an NFL starter. He grew so much in the offseason. I always mention it. His teammates know that he’s the first guy in and the last guy to leave. He does it every single day. He’s prepared. He prepares like a pro. Now he’s reaping the benefits. Our whole football team and our fan base is reaping the benefits.

“We knew when we drafted him that we drafted the right guy. He’s going to be the right guy for the next 10 years here.”

Now, this doesn’t mean that Sanchez has “figured it out” or that he “gets it.” But considering this was the same quarterback that often pooped his drawers last year (or in Week 1 against the Ravens) at the first sign of pressure, those stats are impressive.

More importantly than any stat is the fact that Sanchez and the Jets are 8-2 and hold a tiebreaker over the Patriots in the AFC East. Not all of their wins have been pretty and they’ve had some nearly devastating collapses in each of their last two games. But they’re finding ways to win.

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