The New York Jets will get several of their top pass catching weapons back against the Buffalo Bills on Sunday, headlined by Santonio Holmes. Holmes got the season off to a solid start, recording 10 catches for 243 yards and 1 TD in his first four games (although he barely played in Week 1.) Holmes emerged as Geno Smith’s favorite receiver early on, but a hamstring injury has cost Holmes the last five games.
The Jets were patient with Holmes throughout his recovery, as they wanted to make sure that he was fully healthy and ready for the season’s final stretch. Holmes will return to face a Buffalo secondary that he shredded in Week 3, catching 5 passes for 154 yards and a touchdown. This game is crucial for the Jets’ playoff chances, as they need to get themselves on their first win streak of the season.
Holmes’ presence should help tremendously with that. He is very good at finding space on the intermediate patterns that Smith throws so well, and the two had quite a bit of success on third downs earlier in the season. With Jeremy Kerley out for the next few weeks, Holmes will once again be Smith’s main target in third down situations.
Holmes also has the speed to get behind the defense on deep balls, something the Jets have been lacking this season. If the Jets can continue their strong run game, it will open up chances to take shots deep down the field. Smith and Holmes could team up for a few big plays, which is a element of their offense that the Jets must improve.
As the Jets try to make the playoffs during the last seven weeks of the season, consistency will be hugely important. The Jets have been a roller coaster all season, and Smith is the biggest reason why. However, Holmes gives Smith a steady presence on the outside, and he is a playmaker that Smith and the Jets know they can rely on in key situations. This should go a long way towards settling the swings in Smith’s play.
Holmes simply makes the Jets a more well rounded and complete offense, and he is by far their most talented receiver. The Jets’ passing attack needed a boost, and Holmes should be able to provide one.