*DISCLAIMER: With all of our coverage here at TOJ, you all know exactly what this Jets team looks like as far as roster, strengths, weaknesses, etc., so I will focus mainly on getting to know the opponents in these quarterly previews.*
Week 14 — @ San Francisco
Simply put, the Niners are going to be terrible. In 2015, they were ranked 29th in total defense, 31st in total offense, and they did not really do anything to get better. They still have the same mess at quarterback with Colin Kaepernick and Blaine Gabbert, though I would lean toward Kaepernick being the starter and having some success in Chip Kelly’s offense. Carlos Hyde has shown flashes of talent, but he is never healthy. Torrey Smith is the only threat at WR with Anquan Boldin now in Detroit. Defensively, Arik Armstead and Deforest Buckner are two nice young pieces up front, but Navorro Bowman is the only bona fide veteran that an offense would have to worry about.
On paper, the Jets should blow the Niners out of the water (as should just about every other team in the league), but I am going to be a bit nervous in the week leading up to this game. It is never easy flying across the country, and the Jets have not had much success out west in recent memory. I’ll give them a win here just because the Niners are terrible, but it has the potential to be a letdown.
Week 15 — vs. Miami (Saturday Night Football)Here is what I had to say about the Dolphins in the 3rd Quarter Schedule Breakdown:
I had the Jets losing the first matchup being that it is on the road with the Dolphins coming off a bye, but they will take this matchup at home to begin that final playoff push.
It seems like every year we hear people talking about Miami breaking through and making a playoff push, but they are still in the cellar of the AFC East and I expect them to be there again this year.
For all of the jokes made about Miko Grimes and her inability to remain silent on Twitter, she may have a point when it comes to Ryan Tannehill. In the same way that every year is “the year the Dolphins will break through,” every year is also “the year Tannehill will turn the corner.” He hasn’t yet, and I am starting to wonder if he ever will.
The Dolphins have a few things going for them — Jarvis Landry is a budding star at WR, Jay Ajayi and Arian Foster will form a productive RB tandem, and the defense is strong up front — but this team will only go as far as Ryan Tannehill takes it. He has shown flashes of brilliance and put up respectable numbers, but he has turnover issues and looks as if he is completely lost at times.
Week 16 — @ New England (Saturday at 1:00 because Christmas is on Sunday)
Here is what I had to say about the first matchup with the Patriots:
Brady will miss the first four games, but the Jets won’t benefit from the suspension. Instead, they will have to deal with a dangerous, motivated Brady like the one we saw in a record setting season after the ‘Spygate’ penalties were levied. He will also have a bit more to work with this year in terms of his arsenal.
The Pats tried to duplicate the Gronk-Hernandez TE tandem by bringing in Scott Chandler, but Chandler was underwhelming. With the acquisition of Martellus Bennett, this year’s attempt at recreating the dynamic TE duo may be more successful. At WR, Brandon LaFell left, but Chris Hogan — the same Chris Hogan that terrorized the Jets in Buffalo in Week 17 — was brought in. He is a tremendous route runner and will quickly become one of Brady’s favorite targets.
On the defensive side of the ball, we know exactly what New England is all about. They don’t have any flashy stars and they traded away a bright young piece in Chandler Jones, but they will get the job done and be in the upper-half of the league when it comes to total defense.
With the Jets at home, I had them winning the first matchup, but that won’t be the case here. While they have fared well against the Pats at home, winning in Foxborough has been a struggle. The Patriots may need this game in the push for home-field advantage or a 1st-round bye, which cost them last season as they lost in the AFC Championship game in Denver.
Week 17 — vs. Buffalo
Here is what I had to say about the Bills regarding the Thursday Night Matchup in Week 2:
We know exactly what the Rex Ryan-led Bills bring to the table. They play smash mouth, ground and pound football, and just when their offense lulls you to sleep, Tyrod Taylor and Sammy Watkins pose a major threat for big-plays. The Jets did a solid job of bottling up the run-game last year, which will probably be the case again this year, but they simply could not get off the field on 3rd downs. Hopefully the speed and coverage ability of Darron Lee can help this defense overcome those 3rd down woes.
The Bills did not do much to improve in the offseason, which means they should be a middling eight win team again this season, but they have simply been a thorn in the Jets’ side — even when Rex was still a Jet.
Here it is — a chance at redemption. The Jets may be in the same “win and in” scenario they found themselves in against the Bills last year, except this time they will get the job done in front of the home crowd.
4th Quarter Record: 3-1
Week 1: vs. Cincinnati (W); Week 2: @ Buffalo (L); Week 3: @ Kansas City (L); Week 4: vs. Seattle (W); Week 5: @ Pittsburgh (L); Week 6: @ Arizona (L); Week 7: vs. Baltimore (W); Week 8: @ Cleveland (W); Week 9: @ Miami (L); Week 10: vs. Los Angeles (W); **Week 11: BYE**; Week 12: vs. New England (W); Week 13: vs. Indianapolis (W); Week 14: @ San Francisco (W); Week 15: vs. Miami (W); Week 16: @ New England (L); Week 17: vs. Buffalo (W)
Final Record: 10-6 — 6th Seed in Playoffs
Photo Credit: NewYorkJets.com