TV Schedule: Sunday, Sept. 8, 1 p.m. ET, FOX
Stadium: Metlife Stadium
Weather: Low 62, High 79
Line: Buccaneers (-3.5)
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are coming off a 7-9 season in 2012, but quarterback Josh Freeman saw a bit of a resurgence in 2012, throwing for over 4,000 yards and 27 touchdowns while only throwing six picks. Freeman could have an even better season with Vincent Jackson coming off a 1,000-plus yard season and Mike Williams finishing with 996 yards and nine scores. Rookie Doug Martin had one of the best rookie performances from a season ago at the position — behind only Alfred Morris — as he racked up 1,454 yards and 11 touchdowns on the ground.
On the other side of the field, the New York Jets are having one of the worst offseasons of any team in recent memory. Head coach Rex Ryan had a wealth of questions and concerns about his team and following a rough preseason, the questions are all pointed at him. He might be the problem of this team. Mark Sanchez was injured in the team’s third preseason game, leaving rookie Geno Smith to take the field in week one as the starter. With few options on offense, the Jets could be in for some major trouble moving forward.
The Jets’ defense was in the top-10 in terms of yards and points allowed per game last season, but with a poor offense, the defense could suffer mightily because they will be relied on heavily to stop the bleeding. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers had one of the worst defenses last season, but adding Darrelle Revis and an entirely revamped defense should bode well for the 2013 season.
PREDICTION: Buccaneers 31, Jets 17
Related: Tampa Bay Preview