Saturday, September 21, 2013

Coast's Week 3 Preview: Bills at Jets

What a win last week, but now we all have to move on to the New York football Jets. How will Erik James respond after a last second game winning touchdown pass? How will the team respond after such an exhilarating win? Well, it is as simple as this. If the Bills win, game on. If the Bills lose, they suck and are going 6-10 at best.

The Bills haven't won in New Jersey since October 18, 2009 (Sanchize 5 INT game that probably cost the Bills about 5 draft spots). The three game losing streak in New York has given us a little bit of everything. 2010 gave us a 38-7 complete laugher. 2011 gave us a gut wrenching 28-24 heart-breaker thanks to SJ 13 and 2012 gave us another blowout on opening day, when hope was so high in Buffalo, of course for no reason whatsoever.

The 2013 edition of Bills at Jets is completely different than the past. Nothing that has happened over the past 3 years can be used to preview what will happen tomorrow. The Bills have a new quarterback, new coach, new GM, new President...the entire franchise is completely different. The Jets also have a new quarterback and new GM, but the one guy who stuck around, for now, is Rex Ryan.

The major story of this week 3 AFC East showdown is the battle of the top two quarterbacks taken in the 2013 NFL draft, EJ Manuel and Geno Smith. In the months leading up to the draft, Geno Smith was touted as the best quarterback in the draft. EJ Manuel, propelled by a great Senior Bowl, came out of nowhere to be the Bills choice with the 17th pick in the draft. Geno Smith was taken early in the 2nd round. I know it is too early to tell who was the better quarterback, but I can tell you this much, there is no way I would trade EJ Manuel for Geno Smith and 100 first round picks right now. Through two games, EJ Manuel has completed 68.2% of his passes, thrown for 446 yards, 3 touchdowns and 1 interception. His QB rating is 95.9, 9th in the league. Geno Smith has completed 53.4% of his passes, thrown for 470 yards, 1 touchdown and 4 interceptions. His QB rating is 55.2, 32nd in the league.

Another huge storyline for this week 3 showdown is Mike Pettine returning to go up against his old boss Rex Ryan. A lot of people claimed that the only reason why Mike Pettine looked good as a defensive coordinator is because Rex Ryan actually called the defensive plays. I think most Bills fan would argue that through the first two games this season. The Bills defense has seemingly taken a 180 degree turn compared to the 2012 product. The Bills at times made Tom Brady look pedestrian and made Cam Newton look completely lost a lot of times during last week's game. The defense has definitely outperformed expectations, and if it weren't for some late 4th quarter struggles against the run, I would argue that they have played exceptionally well through two games. Jairus Byrd is traveling with the team this week and if he can suit up and contribute to any extent, that should help a secondary that has definitely overachieved thus far this season.

Offensively for the Bills, I am looking for big performances from two players, Stevie Johnson and CJ Spiller. Stevie Johnson has always claimed to own Revis, but now with Revis gone, he will get his shot at Antonio Chromartie. Not many, if any, corners in this league have shown the ability to cover Johnson, and if he could just catch, he could be very tough to stop. He needs to step up big. CJ Spiller has been rather quiet thus far in 2013. He ran for 100 yards last week, but didn't make a ton of noise until his 48 yard run in the 4th quarter. Spiller ran for 228 yards against the Jets last season and added another 97 receiving. On opening day, Spiller torched the Jets for 169 yards including a 59 yard touchdown run. A big game for Spiller will take a lot of heat off EJ on his first road start.

As far as the Jets go, their offense is a bunch of no names. Stephen Hill, Santonio Holmes and Jeremy Kerley are their top 3 WRs. Hill has been Geno's favorite target through 2 games with 10 receptions. Kerly and Holmes have 7 combined. Kellen Winslow, a late acquisition by the Jets, also has 10 receptions. Basically, I am not scared of the Jets offense at all. The Jets have scored 28 points combined through 2 games, 4th worst in the league. Defense is another story though. The Jets have allowed the 2nd fewest yards through 2 games and the 2nd fewest points. They did play Tampa and the Patriots in a monsoon though so I am not sure HOW good they truly are. I know they will be solid with Rex involved, but top 2 in the league, we will see.

The Bills are +2.5 this Sunday. I love the Bills 27-10 and they are my best bet of the week. After Baltimore loses big at home to the Texans, is it possible we will be favorites week 4 at home vs. the defending champs? You never know...

2 comments:

  1. Ej was drafted sixteenth
    -steve

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