The story of the Jets' 24-7 Week 1 victory over the Texans was the emergence of rookie quarterback Mark Sanchez as a big star in the Big Apple. At least, that was the obvious story. Dig a little deeper, and you'll see that the player who contributed the most to the Jets' victory on Sunday wasn't Sanchez, it was nose tackle Kris Jenkins, who had a dominant game in the middle of new coach Rex Ryan's hard-hitting defense.
The Jets' defense was intense and aggressive for 60 minutes on Sunday, with big contributions from linebackers David Harris and Bart Scott. But it was Jenkins who really set the tone up front. George Bretherton of the New York Times' Fifth Down blog described it nicely:
The Texans' running game (13 rushes, 38 yards) never materialized, largely because Kris Jenkins manhandled any Houston offensive lineman he lined up against. In case you missed it, the 360-pound Jenkins tossed aside Houston center Chris Myers so early in one pass rush in the fourth quarter that Matt Schaub may have mistaken him for an apparition. As Jenkins converged, he forced yet another Schaub incompletion.The Jets have to be concerned that Jenkins -- who's notorious for wearing down as the season goes along -- will look a lot different in December than he does in September. But for Week 1 anyway, Jenkins was the Jets' best player.
Video via The Jets Blog.