Which Jets Team Will Show Up In Carolina?
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By Danny Cox
This season, the New York Jets have notched wins against the Atlanta Falcons, New England Patriots, and New Orleans Saints. That’s not a bad thing at all, but they also have losses to the Miami Dolphins, Pittsburgh Steelers, Buffalo Bills, and were blown out by the Cincinnati Bengals.
It’s really hard to determine which Jets team is going to show up each week, and that makes it a little difficult for any team to prepare for them.
The Carolina Panthers are coming off of a horrible loss to the New Orleans Saints, but they can’t look ahead to next weeks’ rematch with them. They’ve got to focus on the Jets this week and make sure that they’re prepared for whichever Gang Green team ends up on the field of Bank of America Stadium.
Jets on Offense
Quarterback Geno Smith has been up and down all throughout his rookie season. When he’s on, he is spot on and one of the most dangerous players in the game. But when he is bad, he’s downright awful and not a threat to anyone that lines up opposite him.
Smith has some great targets in Kellen Winslow, Santonio Holmes, Jeremy Kerley, and David Nelson, but they aren’t always used to their utmost potential. Carolina is going to have to keep an eye on them all and the secondary will have to play better than they did against the Saints.
One of the consistent points this season for the Jets has been the play of running back Chris Ivory. The bruising back has great strength and some good speed that can make him dangerous for short yardage or breaking open a big one. His talent and the scrambling ability of Smith will keep the Panthers defense honest.
Jets on Defense
Defensively, the Jets are going to have to use their very good rushing defense to keep Cam Newton and a trio of Panther running backs from getting out of the backfield.
New York ranks second in the league in rushing defense as they are giving up less than 83 yards per game. Unfortunately, the passing defense is giving up over 250 per game.
Cam Newton is going to have to seriously watch out for two defensive players in particular.
Defensive lineman Muhammad Wilkerson has 10 sacks on the season and linebacker Calvin Pace has eight. They know how to get to opposing quarterbacks and take them down hard. Newton has great elusiveness and knows how to use it well and he will definitely need it this week.
Carolina needs to bounce back from last week’s loss, and they are getting an opponent in the Jets that should result in a win for the home team. They cannot underestimate New York though because if the “better” Jets team shows up, it could be a long day for the Panthers.
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Danny Cox knows a little something about the NFL, whether it means letting you know what penalty will come from the flag just thrown on the field or quickly spouting off who the Chicago Bears drafted in the first round of the 1987 draft (Jim Harbaugh). He plans on bringing you the best news, previews, recaps, and anything else that may come along with the exciting world of the National Football League. Danny is a freelance writer covering all things NFL. His work can be found on Examiner.com.