For as bad as the loss to the Buccaneers was, at least the short week means Broncos Country’s got another game to key in on. Like Denver, New York enters today 0-3 with all sorts of questions looming.
With so little time to prepare I thought it best to reach out to someone who knows the Jets’ roster inside and out. Fortunately, Gang Green Nation’s MacGregor Wells was more than happy to ask any questions I had.
1st and 10
Are there any matchups you like for the Jets?
Wells: Right now the Jets don’t present many matchup problems for other teams. The Jets rookie left tackle Mekhi Becton has been a pleasant surprise. He was the Jets’ first round pick in the 2020 draft. Jets fans knew he had potential, but we expected he’d struggle out of the gate, like most offensive linemen. Instead, Becton already looks like one of the better left tackles in the NFL so far. Whoever is rushing from the right side for the Broncos should have their hands full on Thursday night. It would be fun to watch Bradley Chubb rush the passer against Becton all night, but I believe he rushes from the opposite side, unless I’m mistaken.
The other “matchup” isn’t really a matchup per se, but I like Sam Darnold over Brett Rypien. The Jets rarely have an edge at quarterback, but as much as Darnold has struggled, I would expect him to still have an edge over the Broncos’ third string quarterback. If he doesn’t the Jets are in even worse shape than I think they are.
Mekhi Becton has elite recovery skills in pass pro. Here’s some reps on Sunday vs Nick Bosa. The first one Bosa goes inside and gets dumped. On the second one, Bosa swipes his hands down but Becton is in great body position, plus he’s a massive human, and recovers well. pic.twitter.com/WuJ94AodR4— Geoff Schwartz (@geoffschwartz) September 22, 2020
2nd and 7
Are there any mismatches the Broncos present that has you worried for the Jets?
Wells: Probably the biggest mismatch will be Jerry Jeudy, Noah Fant, KJ Hamler and company against the Jets’ secondary. The Jets probably have the worst set of cornerbacks in the NFL. The Jets’ safeties are OK, but Fant will give them trouble. If Rypien can play a decent game the Broncos receivers should present the Jets’ secondary with all kinds of problems. It should also help Rypien that the Jets have no pass rushers at all on the team. He should have plenty of time to find what I anticipate to be some wide open receivers throughout the game.
One of the best plays by a Broncos' QB this season. pic.twitter.com/iBADvRQeOv— Joe Rowles (@JoRo_NFL) September 29, 2020
3rd and 4
Word is Adam Gase is coaching for his job Thursday night. How do you believe that impacts the game, if at all?
Wells: I doubt Gase’s troubles will have much impact on the game. There’s no doubt Gase is on thin ice, and rumors are swirling that if the Jets lose this game Gase is history. I suppose it’s possible the players get extra fired up to save Gase’s job, but I never got the impression Gase is the kind of guy to inspire such emotional responses.
Perhaps if the Jets get down big in the game we will see a different approach from Gase. He has in the past ignored the scoreboard and made no real attempt to win the game after falling behind big, preferring instead to just continue to execute his predetermined, run heavy game plan. Maybe if he thinks his job is on the line he’ll go for broke and actually go pass heavy and throw the ball down the field if the Jets are playing from behind, but I doubt it. I think Gase is who he is, and he’s not going to change for anyone or any circumstances.
Who's the worst coach in modern era NFL history and why is it Adam Gase?— Frank Schwab (@YahooSchwab) September 27, 2020
4th and 1
This has the makings of an early “Trevor Lawrence” bowl. Do you think the Jets would take Lawrence if they fell to #1?
Wells: If the Jets get the #1 pick it probably means Darnold had a horrible year and is regressing. Under those circumstances, it is difficult to see why Jets GM Joe Douglas, who did not draft Darnold, would feel in any way tied to Darnold going forward.
I think if the Jets pick #1, the Jets will likely be moving on from Darnold. Joe Douglas’ future will largely be tied to whoever the Jets quarterback will be going forward. He knows that. Assuming Douglas likes Trevor Lawrence or one of the other quarterbacks in the 2021 draft, I would guess the Jets will be taking that quarterback if they have the #1 pick.
What is your prediction for the game?
I expect a low scoring affair. The Jets have no weapons and a shaky quarterback. The Broncos have some weapons, but potentially an even shakier quarterback. I think that Rypien and the Broncos weapons will ultimately present more of a problem for the Jets’ defense than Darnold and his non-existent weapons will present for the Broncos’ defense. Maybe something like Broncos 17, Jets 16.
Who wins on Thursday?
This poll is closed
Broncos by a lot.
Broncos by a little.
Jets by a lot.
Jets by a little.