Who? New York Jets (1-0) @ New England Patriots (1-0)
When? Thursday, September 12, 8:25 P.M. (NFL Network)
Where? Gillette Stadium, Foxborough, Massachusetts
Impact Players, NY Jets: QB r-Geno Smith, TE Kellen Winslow, WR Jeremy Kerley, CB Antonio Cromartie, ILB David Harris
Impact Players, New England: QB Tom Brady, HB Shane Vereen, WR Danny Amendola, LB Rob Ninkovich, DT Vince Wilfork
Head Coach Matchup: Rex Ryan (5th year at NY Jets, 35-30) vs Bill Belichick (14th year at New England, 289-188)
Matchup to Watch: Patriots WR’s vs Jets DB’s
Prediction: Patriots 27, Jets 17
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For the past 12 years, the Patriots have won the AFC East, a large part in thanks to domination over their fellow division opponents.
And while New England is already looking to go 2-0 in the division in 2013, the Jets are eyeing the same record after a out-of-conference win against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
For the Patriots, the game could have come at a better time. After a game in which they needed every last second to take down the Bills, they will have to rebound against their division rival.
For the Jets, this matchup could not of come at a better time. Sure, they also have some kinks to work out after a lackluster Week 1 offensive performance, but they present a scrambling quarterback in rookie Geno Smith, a type of signal-caller the Patriots are not accustomed to seeing.
The key to the game? The Patriots wide receivers against the Jets secondary. It was obvious in Week 1 that New England still has some problems to work out in the passing game after 5 of their top 7 receivers from 2012, but Tom Brady still threw for 288 yards and two scores. If the Jets were to shut down New England’s pass game and force turnovers, then Rex Ryan’s squad will have the advantage of working with a short field and could put up enough points to win.
To put the entire game in perspective, if Tom Brady passes for 300+ yards and three touchdowns, then the Jets are done for and will subsequently fall to 1-1. In other words, for once Jets fans need to worry about Brady’s right arm more than their inability to produce an offense.
— Greenhouse Sports