2. Stay healthy in the secondary and overall aggressive on defense
After missing the last two weeks with a concussion he suffered against Houston – a game in which DeAndre Hopkins torched him for 118 yards and 2 touchdowns – Darrelle Revis is set to return to the Jets secondary this Sunday against Tennessee. Marcus Williams on the other hand, remains questionable as he rehabs a knee sprain he suffered against Miami.
Though they’re both close to returning to the field, Revis and Williams’ injuries continue a concerning trend of Jets defensive backs getting injured this season. It began when back-up safety Jaiquawn Jarrett was lost for the season to a knee injury, and continued when Calvin Pryor III went down against New England with a bad high ankle sprain. Pryor missed five weeks, and the Jets have been forced to rely on second-year safety Dion Bailey and undrafted free agent Rontez Miles to fill the voids. While both Bailey and Miles have played well, the continuing trend of injuries in the secondary is something the Jets have to put to a stop as they chase an AFC Wild Card spot.
Bowles’s defense, similar to the defense Rex Ryan had in place during his time in the Big Apple, revolves around using creative blitz packages to force turnovers into the secondary. However, they can’t do this if their top safeties and corners are standing on the sidelines. The trio of Revis, Williams and Pryor has to stay healthy if this defense wants to bring pressure. Depth in the secondary is going to be crucial if and when they play teams like New England, Pittsburgh and/or Kansas City in the playoffs.