The Road to MetLife Stadium takes an interesting turn for the New York Jets, before they take a week off for their scheduled bye. Tomorrow at 1 PM, from MetLife Stadium, Geno Smith, Mo Wilkerson and the rest of the New York Jets take on Drew Brees, Marques Colston, and the rest of the New Orleans Saints.
The Saints join us from the Bayou with a 6-1 record, coming off of a 35-17 win over the Buffalo Bills last week. The Jets, well, are not coming off of a win. They are coming off of a debacle at the hands of the Cincinnati Bengals. It was a 49-9 drubbing that the Jets had better recover from quickly, or it won’t be much better this week.
The Jets have the ability to pull the upset. We have talked about some of this earlier in the week, but it is worth talking about again. So here are some keys to victory for the Jets:
GET IN THE FACE OF DREW BREES: We talked about this earlier in the week, and we highlighted it in yesterday’s film room post. The Bills were able to get to Brees with just a four-man rush, collapsing the pocket from in front of him. Pressure up the middle will give ANY quarterback a problem and Drew Brees is no different.
Teams have been able to get to Drew Brees all season long, as they have allowed 18 sacks in the first seven games. This is a game where Mo Wilkerson and company have the chance to do some serious snacking. No matter how lethal the wide receivers are, the quarterback cannot get the ball there if he is on his back. Get him on the ground.
GET PHYSICAL WITH THE WIDE RECEIVERS: Make Drew Brees win this football game by handing the football off. How do you do that? By knocking his receivers off of their spots, that’s how. The Jets have to do everything they DIDN’T do against the Bengals receivers. They must use the five yard area to their advantage and hit these guys.
Like we talked about earlier this week, you are not going to take Drew Brees out of this game. He completes 65% of his passes. He is going to “get his”, as they say. The way to fight back is to take away his weapons. You do that by knocking them around. Let Drew look up and find his guys not quite in the spot he is expecting them to be. Don’t let Brees be comfortable making his reads.
SLOW THE TEMPO DOWN: On offense, the Jets are going to need to buck the trend of up-tempo play in order to possibly win this one. No huddle might catch the defense off-balance, but if it’s used too often, it will also cause Drew Brees to be back on the field too quickly. We don’t want that.
We need long sustained drives. Drew Brees cannot do any damage to the New York Jets if he is wearing a baseball cap. If the Jets can control the time of possession, an upset might be on the menu tomorrow afternoon.
Those are some keys to victory. What are yours?