There was plenty of pessimism and criticism facing the New York Jets in the offseason but they laid all of that to rest in Week 1. They thumped the Buffalo Bills 48-28 win in one of the biggest surprises of the week.
While beating down the hapless Buffalo Bills is one thing, going to Pittsburgh and stealing a win in the Steelers home opener is quite another.
One of the biggest concerns of the week for the Jets will be the health of cornerback Darrelle Revis. He suffered a mild concussion in against the Bills and is questionable for this week’s game. The Steelers have a very deep, fast and talented group of wide receivers and the Jets would definitely miss Revis if he wasn’t able to play.
Even so, people making their NFL picks should be encouraged by the performance of the Jets offense. Quarterback Mark Sanchez, who was heavily scrutinized in the offseason, completed 19-of-27 passes for 266 yards, three touchdowns and an interception. Running back Shonn Greene chipped in 94 rushing yards and a touchdown while the receiving corps looked more than capable with rookie Stephen Hill and Jeremy Kerley registering touchdowns.
To beat the Steelers, the Jets will have to do a better job running the ball. As a team, they finished with just 118 rushing yards on 36 carries and if they plan to win at Heinz Field, they’ll have to average more than just 3.3 yards per carry.
Sanchez looked great last week but he has a tendency to be inconsistent from week to week. If he has to go on the road and carry this Jets offense on his own, he’ll be in trouble.
The Steelers are listed as a 6.5-point favorite on next Sunday as these two teams square off in the afternoon.