The loss of cornerback Darrelle Revis may weaken the New York Jets defense a bit for their game against the 49ers on Sunday, but it also creates more headaches for 49ers offensive coordinator Greg Roman to try to figure out how the Jets will compensate.
Rex Ryan and his Jets defensive staff are known for the variety of looks they throw at an offense, and now they may be more unpredictable in terms of how they will alter things with Revis out.
“Yeah, that’s just a tragedy,” Roman said Thursday of Revis’ season-ending injury. “Such a great player was befallen by injury and I’m sure they are going to adjust somehow. There’s a lot of different ways they can do it and we might see all of them.”
Roman has worked with Ryan, so he knows how innovative he can be on the defensive side.
“This Jets defense forces our whole staff to stay up into the wee hours of the morning,” Roman said. “Some really good coaches, great innovators, really changed defense in the NFL, forced offense to adjust. It’s been happening for the past probably six or seven years.”
Frank Gore had just 12 carries while gaining 63 yards in Sunday’s loss to the Minnesota Vikings, but Roman did not declare that Gore would get more work against the Jets.
“You know we are always going to do what we think is best to win the game and every game’s going to play out differently,” he said. ”
Historically, the Jets have been very good against the run under Ryan, and even though they have allowed more rushing yardage than usual this season, Roman still thinks they have the talent to be tough against the run.
“No question and I think they do,” he said. “A lot of those runs were corralled pretty good and the back just made something happen. Some of those on paper you’d say, ‘Wow that should never happen, really.’ The New York Jets play run defense, if you go back, as good as anybody.”
On the other side of the ball, San Francisco defensive coordinator Vic Fangio also has something new to consider — the Tim Tebow package.
“Well you have to take it very serious,” Fango said, “because they’ll play him some in there and it’s more like it gets back to the college type offense where there’s the gun read, the quarterback runs where he fakes it and then keeps it and it’s just a quarterback power. It’s an everyday power, but it’s with the 11th guy on the field not the 10th. So you do have to prepare for it.”