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What is the key matchup for the Jets to defeat the Chiefs?

Sep 15, 2016; Orchard Park, NY, USA; New York Jets cornerback Marcus Williams (20) intercepts a pass intended for Buffalo Bills wide receiver Sammy Watkins (14) during the second half at New Era Field. The Jets beat the Bills 37-31. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports
Sep 15, 2016; Orchard Park, NY, USA; New York Jets cornerback Marcus Williams (20) intercepts a pass intended for Buffalo Bills wide receiver Sammy Watkins (14) during the second half at New Era Field. The Jets beat the Bills 37-31. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports
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The New York Jets head into Arrowhead Stadium at 1-1 off of a huge win in Buffalo.  The Kansas City Chiefs are also 1-1, and that raucous crowd will play a factor, if the Jets allow them to get into the game.

There are plenty of matchups to look at in this game.  However, the most important one is the defensive secondary of the New York Jets going up against quarterback Alex Smith. The Jets have a ball-hawking defense as it’s not a surprise.  The only way they can leave this game victorious is by stopping their aerial attack dead in its tracks.

Related Story: Marcus Williams developing into a bonafide star with Jets

Head coach Todd Bowles had 15 career interceptions and made his bones on defense as a coach.  In his last 50 games as a defensive coordinator and head coach, Bowles had his defenses amass 50 interceptions.

Likewise, Smith has been susceptible to interceptions in his career.  He has thrown at least one interception in 43% of his games played and 2+ in 15.6% of his games played.  In addition, he has thrown an interception on 2.3% of his pass attempts.

Here’s where the rubber meets the road.  This game may actually be a battle of wills and who blinks first. In the 18 games under Bowles, the Jets have amassed 20 interceptions on 662 pass attempts against them (3.0% INT%).  However, in the same timeframe, Smith has a much better rate of interceptions.  He has only thrown one on 1.4% of his passes.  He has also thrown an interception in six of those games (33.3%) and multiple interceptions only twice.

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The Jets interception leaders under Bowles are Marcus Williams (8), Darrelle Revis (5) and Marcus Gilchrist (3).

In addition, Calvin Pryor has two plus Buster Skrine and Rontez Miles have each added one.

The defensive line could help by getting to Smith.

Last season, according to Football Outsiders advanced analytics, the Chiefs’ offensive line had an Adjusted Sack Rate (sacks + intentional grounding penalties/pass attempted) of 8.7%.

That was 28th out of 32 teams in the NFL. Also, according to NFL.com, the Chiefs have allowed seven sacks and 15 quarterbacks hits in 2016.  Each of those rank second in the NFL and the combined total is tied for second in the NFL.

Must Read: Darrelle Revis will be just fine with the Jets

Finally, there seems to be one chink in the armor of the secondary, and that’s Revis.  However, he just needs to get back to playing bump-and-run, and he’ll be just fine against a Chiefs’ offense who will undoubtedly target him heavily in this Week 3 matchup.

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