Given the slapstick ineptitude on display, it would have made more sense for play calling duties during the New York Jets' possessions against the New England Patriots on Thanksgiving to be handled by Tom Bergeron of "America' Funniest Home Videos" as opposed to sports broadcasters like Al Michaels and Cris Collinsworth. Of course, playing the theme from The Benny Hill Show would have sufficed.
By any soundtrack, Mark Sanchez and the Jets reached a new low in a season pockmarked with poor performances with an epic fail in the second quarter.
Already trailing 14-0, Sanchez gifted the Patriots a fumble in an embarrassing manner, even by the low standards of the Kotite-era Jets. While Sanchez failed and fell the hardest on the play, the sequence was triggered when fullback Lex Hilliard missed a handoff. Scrambling to salvage the botched play, Sanchez then ran up toward the line of scrimmage and.. wait for it.. ran right into the backside of one of his offensive lineman. The Jets' beleaguered quarterback smacked into Brandon Moore (who was manhandled by Vince Wilfork) and lost his footing and the football. Patriots safety Steve Gregory (who already had interception on the night) scooped up the loose ball and scampered 35 yards for a touchdown.
While there were multiple mistakes on the play by multiple players in green uniforms, it is the image of Sanchez running face-first into the ample posterior of a teammate that may define this season for Rex Ryan's crew. Easy options for the New York tabloid headlines include "Butt Head" and "Heads Up Their @$$es."
It took only slightly longer for the GIFs to start circulating than it did for the "Tebow" chants to begin.
For those Patriots fans and FAIL enthusiasts out there, here is a closer look at the butt collision:
Created with cinemagr.am
While this play was far and away the funniest moment of the Jets' woeful first half it was hardly the only one that elicited laughter -- from those not rooting for Gang Green -- as the Patriots ran out to a 35-3 halftime lead. The Jets would give a slightly better accounting of themselves in the second half en route to a 49-19 loss but would never get within striking distance of the Pats and would not do anything to keep this play from being the game's enduring moment.