Keys to Divisional Matchup between Jets and Patriots
Week 2 of the NFL starts out with a tough AFC East divisional matchup between the New York Jets and the New England Patriots. Both teams are riding last-second victories and hoping that momentum leads them to another victory. Here are some keys for both teams.
The Jets: The Jets offense needs to do a better job running the ball. It was practically non-existent last week and with a rookie QB, a running game is needed. The o-line needs to do a better job opening holes so that the running backs can actually gain more than a yard per carry.
The passing game looked better than expected last week and after a few blunders in the first half, Geno Smith grew up and showed poise in the second half. They won’t be facing a pass D as bad as the Bucs and the Pats pass rush should give Geno fits especially as he tends to hold the ball too long. If the o-line holds its blocks and Geno makes the quick and right decisions, there should be similar success as last week.
The Jets defense played well last week but against Brady it must play better. Last week Brady looked uncomfortable and if Rex Ryan does his vintage blitzes, the Pats offense will look sluggish and Brady will be on the ground more often than not. The Jets run defense stopped Doug Martin last week and if they can clog the middle, the Pats will have similar problems running the ball.
The Patriots are an injured mess right now and the only receiver with any real experience is Julian Edelman. The Pats will be relying heavily on a bunch of rookies but if anyone can make it work, it’s Brady. The Patriots passing attack did not seem to miss a beat and outside the redzone had lots of success. However the Jets have a tougher D than the Bills and the added pressure and lack of weapons will make the passing game look average.
That is why the Patriots will run the ball and run it often. The running game was the best part last week and even without Shane Vereen it should still have success. As long as Ridley doesn’t fumble, the running attack should take pressure off the passing game.
The defense of the Pats stepped up last week, only giving up 286 yards and really contained the Bills passing attack and best playmaker CJ Spiller. This week they face a team with less playmakers and another rookie QB so look for similar success. Chandler Jones will make Geno scared and make the Jets offense look like the Jets of recent memory. The only problem will be the secondary which gave up two TD passes last week and if the pass rush does not work, some big plays might happen.
Overall I see this as a game that will end closer than the experts think. The Patriots are the most vulnerable than they have ever been and the Jets might be able to exploit that, especially with their above-average defense. Expect this one to be a close one.
Written by ArcherNoles.