The Jets are on a three-game win streak following victories over the Steelers, Dolphins, and Packers. After a 1-2 start, they look like a legitimate football team; one that could contend for a playoff spot in the AFC. The Jets are currently second in the AFC East behind the Bills.
But a daunting task (in some regards) awaits in the Denver Broncos, who will host the Jets this Sunday at Mile High.
While quarterback Russell Wilson is dealing with a hamstring injury and the Broncos’ offense is last in scoring (15.2 points per game), the defense has been awesome. Denver is allowing 290.3 total yards per game (third in the NFL) and 16.5 points per game (fourth).
The young Jets offense must build on its strong stretch of games in order to overpower the Denver defense and notch the victory.
Are quarterback Zach Wilson, running back Breece Hall, and the other offensive weapons up for the challenge?
Jets at Broncos
When: Sunday, Oct. 23, 2022
Where: Empower Field at Mile High in Denver, CO
Time: 4:05 p.m. ET
Radio: ESPN Radio New York 98.7 FM
Keys to victory
Hall, Carter, Hall, Carter. The Jets have a talented Breece Hall-Michael Carter running back duo, with the former establishing himself as the lead dog in the backfield. Using these talented weapons, the Jets need to establish the run so Wilson can pick apart the talented Broncos secondary via play action.
Saleh’s pass rush. Robert Saleh and general manager Joe Douglas have made various moves to build the type of defensive line the former had in San Francisco. They feel they’ve made great progress, with the likes of Carl Lawson, John Franklin-Myers, and rookie Jermaine Johnson taking the field for Gang Green.
Saleh needs to unleash these pass rushers against a Broncos offensive line that’s already allowed 20 sacks through six games (sixth-most in the NFL).
Sauce-Reed Masterclass. The Jets’ defense needs big games out of its starting cornerback duo of rookie Sauce Gardner and D.J. Reed. You can’t let these talented Bronco receivers — Jerry Jeudy, K.J. Hamler, and Courtland Sutton — find space to allow Russell Wilson to cook.
The third-year receiver is starting in place of Elijah Moore, who will be a healthy scratch after requesting a trade earlier in the week. Mims has yet to play a down this year but has a chance to prove he can produce in this offense. While the Jets aren’t likely to trade Moore, Mims could still see an expanded role moving forward if he takes advantage of this great opportunity.
Did you know?
The Jets have never defeated Russell Wilson.
In his decade-long stint in Seattle, Wilson was 3-0 against New York, with wins in 2012, 2016, and 2020. Across the trio of matchups, the veteran completed 71.8% of his throws with nine touchdowns, one interception, and a 132.6 passer rating.
The Jets could end an unfortunate streak this Sunday afternoon.
This will be a fairly low-scoring battle. The Broncos’ offense is horrendous (last with 15.2 points per game) while the defense was strong enough to hold the Justin Herbert-led Chargers to only 19 points in Monday night’s loss.
So Zach Wilson and Co. should only need to score around 20-25 points to emerge victorious for the fourth straight week. And with the young offensive pieces (Wilson, rookie wide receiver Garrett Wilson, rookie running back Breece Hall, etc.) all coming together, Mike LaFleur’s unit shouldn’t have many issues reaching that mark. Jets 24, Broncos 17.