Jersey Swamps, NJ: If you told me at the start of last season that the New York Jets would win five games, I would have believed you. Had you told me that would be more than the New York Giants, I would have laughed. Odds are good that they will finish with more than eight wins between them. With optimism in both camps, let’s try to figure out how it’s going to shake out this season.
The Over/Under for Jets wins on the season is six. The Jets schedule is tied for the 25th easiest, based on last year’s records. But they do finish with a killer triple of Houston, Green Bay, and New England. The division is weak with the Bills looking worse, the Dolphins looking their usual mediocre, and signs of trouble in New England.
Reasons for Optimism
You don’t have to look further than Mr. Sam Darnold. The whole organization is singing this guy’s praises and they felt comfortable giving him the keys to the firetruck from day one. If he’s ready they might as well let him learn on the job.
Tony Romo, who has a better track record predicting QB success than he does in winning playoff games, was falling all over himself in praising Darnold. Get a load of this quote:
I really think Sam is going to be one of the great quarterbacks in the National Football League. I think he’s got a chance, before he finishes his career, at some point to possibly be the top guy. Tom Brady’s gonna be done one day. I think when he goes away, it’s going to be Aaron Rodgers – he’s gonna be the guy until he’s done. But that next phase, there’s a chance. I see certain traits in Sam Darnold that are rare.
Man that’s bold praise with zero NFL games under his belt. It goes Brady, Rodgers, then Sam. Maybe the Giants should have drafted him. Last year’s dearth at WR is improved and Sam will have a few guys to throw to. On defense, the back end looks strong.
The secondary might have to cover for a while though, because it’s hard to see where the pressure is going to come from. The constant triple team on Leonard Williams should provide opportunities for someone to step up, but who? The O line is still a concern and I don’t think I could pick any of their TEs out of a lineup.
This will be a growing year from Sam with some ups and downs. But I think there will be enough bright spots for the Jets to win seven or eight games. And if they can have a good draft next year, the future will look bright.
The Giants Under/Over is 7 games. It seems low, but they have the eighth hardest schedule and are in a division with no easy games. Look at their first seven – Jax, at Dallas, at Houston, New Orleans, at Panthers, Eagles, Falcons. Ooof. There are no easy holes on this course.
Reasons for Optimism
This is the best group of skill positions players in the history of the franchise. If the line can hold up, this is a team that will scare defenses. If all the weapons are on the field this team has a ton of firepower. On defense, they have talent on all three levels.
There’s not a lot of depth. If something happens to Odell, Sterling, Evan, or Saquon, you’re looking at a big dropoff. Picking up a NFL leading six players on the waiver wire after cut down day is not a good sign.
The O-line is also still a big question mark, especially on the right side with Patrick Omameh not looking great at guard and our old friend Ereck Flowers on the end. The secondary is thin as well with little behind Eli Apple, Janoris Jenkins, and Landon Collins. They just cut their last two starting safeties and added three DBs off the wire. I guess they’re counting on Bettcher to make it work.
I think the Giants will struggle at the start but win a few games and then turn it on in the second half to win about nine games and challenge for a wildcard spot.
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