New York Jets: Top 5 Positives From Week 1 To Use vs. New England Patriots
Top 5 Positives From Week 1 For New York Jets To Use vs. New England Patriots
After a hard-fought, come-from-behind win against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, the New York Jets have to take their positives from that game and do them even better if they want to win their game in Week 2.
Who do they play on Thursday, you ask?
Well, none other than their biggest rival, the New England Patriots in Foxboro, Massachusetts.
The Jets' first road game of the season will be one of their hardest tasks of the year, in which the Jets are heavy 13-point underdogs and rightfully so.
Playing the Buccaneers at home and playing the Patriots on the road are not only two very different games, but two different sports.
The Patriots have been the NFL's bad guys for over a decade now, and that isn't because their play on the field is bad.
Even though the Patriots aren't as good as they once were when they were racking up Super Bowls with ease in the beginning of the 21st century, they are still one of the NFL's elite teams, and a team the Jets play twice a season -- and have struggled mightily against over the years.
With the Jets having a rookie in Geno Smith starting at quarterback, one would think this game is shaping up to be a disaster. While that is a possibility, I will still say not so fast.
If the Jets improve on their five positives from last week and use those strengths at a higher level, the Jets might have an outside chance.
Granted, this outside chance will not be any more than 10 percent, but that is the beauty of sports. You just never know.
Here are the top five positives from last week that the Jets need to improve upon in order to have a chance to beat the Patriots on Thursday Night Football.
5. Nick Folk
You might not take a kicker's job all that seriously, but the Jets' kicker, that being Nick Folk, was a perfect 3-for-3 last week against the Buccaneers, including the game-winning field goal with two seconds left in the game. He needs to be even more perfect against the Patriots, if that is even possible.
If the Jets have any shot at winning this game, I can say for a fact that the Jets are not going to blow out the Patriots. They need Folk to be perfect as they would win by a field goal at most -- and that is if all of the stars are aligned perfectly.
4. Stephen Hill
Stephen Hill was a receiver in his rookie season who I think had more drops than catches ... or at least that is how it seemed.
Even though it was only one game, Hill showed that he is more confident in himself on the field and made sure to look the ball into the hands as he caught six total passes for 39 yards. I know that might not seem like much, but believe me, that is an improvement and a positive bright spot for the Jets last week. And with wide receiver Jeremy Kerley ruled out for the game against the Pats, Hill will definitely be a key factor for the Jets' passing game against New England.
3. Kellen Winslow Jr.
Last week showed that rookie quarterback Geno Smith has great chemistry with veteran tight end Kellen Winslow Jr.
With the injury to Kerley, not only does Hill need to step up his game, but so does Winslow -- even more so. Winslow is a wide reciever who plays tight end and can create mismatches for any defense, which is why he is the biggest receiving threat the Jets have right now. He needs to continue his great play from last week if the Jets want to have a chance in beating the Patriots.
2. Geno Smith
Smith's game against the Bucs wasn't perfect by any means, but despite his mistakes, he showed great poise and smarts in the second half by not getting rattled and throwing the ball away when no one was open, and did not try to force anything. This is exactly what Smith has to do against the Patriots, as they seem to capitalize on every mistake. If Smith can continue his play from last week, protect the ball and limit mistakes, the Jets could have an outside chance to give the Patriots a scare and upset them.
1. Defensive Line
The Jets' defensive line was the biggest positive last week, as they were able to pressure and get to the quarterback and even make the Bucs' running game look non-existent.
Muhammad Wilkerson, Kenrick Ellis, and rookie Sheldon Richardson need to come up big again, and even bigger against the Patriots
In order to challenge and possibly beat the Patriots, the Jets' defensive line needs to pressure Tom Brady. There is just no other way. If Brady has the usual 10 minutes per play to just stand in the pocket, read a book and then throw, the Jets will get destroyed. However, if the Jets' defensive line gets to Brady and puts a lot of pressure on him, then we have ourselves an entirely different story, and one in which the Jets can have a happy ending.