What to Watch For in Tonight’s Jets vs. Giants Preseason Game
By Alan Schechter
Aug 15, 2012; Cortland, NY, USA; New York Jets head coach Rex Ryan walks back to the locker room following practice at SUNY Cortland. Mandatory Credit: Rich Barnes-US PRESSWIRE
The annual matchup is almost here. The Snoopy trophy is at stake tonight, ladies and gentlemen. Actually, I don’t really care about the result, just mainly don’t want to see major injuries. But, we also need to see some progress towards week 1 against Buffalo. Here are some things to watch for.
We all know this was a problem last week. If you watched or read about the Bengals game against the Falcons, you felt worse about the Jets offensive line as Matt Ryan tore up the Bengals. Mark Sanchez could have done some of that had the line given him more than two seconds to throw the football.
The starters are scheduled to play approximately the first half. You won’t find a better pass rushing front seven than you do with the world champion New York Giants. Improvement in the offensive line must take place tonight. I have been saying all week, that if we want to play “Ground and Pound”, the line must improve, otherwise we will be grounded and pounded.
This is a position that doesn’t get a lot of ink, but the winner of this competition could loom large during the season. Josh Brown and Nick Folk have been even so far, will anybody take the lead here? It could come down to the results of kickoffs. Who will win? We might start to find out tonight.
Quinton went a long way to start quieting the doubters last week, as he shined in an otherwise very down game for the New York Jets. Calvin Pace this week talked about how he would like to see more urgency out of Coples during practice.
The question will be, will he continue playing the way he did last week?
Although a main component of this problem was the offensive line play, the running backs, for the most part, didn’t look good last week. Joe McKnight had a couple of flashes, but the group didn’t play well as a whole. These guys are the other obvious part that needs to improve if the Ground and Pound isn’t going to stall in its tracks. We need more from Shonn Greene while he is in there. We need to see someone step up as the number two back behind him.
Is it McKnight? Powell? How about Ganaway? Someone has to step up, and it begins tonight.
Finally, more than just Coples, it will be interesting to see where the pass rush is tonight. In order for the Jets to start incorporating the “46” defense, they have to be able to get to the QB.
We know how much Rex enjoys putting pressure on the QB. Let’s hope to see Eli on his backside a few times tonight.
Enjoy the game everybody.