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Ravens vs Jets: How will the absence of Lee affect Week 7?

Oct 17, 2016; Glendale, AZ, USA; New York Jets linebacker Darron Lee (50) against the Arizona Cardinals at University of Phoenix Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
Oct 17, 2016; Glendale, AZ, USA; New York Jets linebacker Darron Lee (50) against the Arizona Cardinals at University of Phoenix Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
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In the Week 7 tilt of Ravens vs Jets, rookie linebacker, Darron Lee is out.  This is bad news for the Jets, as he leads the team in tackles.

Following his injury Monday, Lee hasn’t practiced in the lead-up to the Ravens vs Jets Week 7 matchup.  According to multiple reports, including ESPN’s Rich Cimini, in his piece “Jets rookie Darron Lee (ankle) won’t play against Ravens,” linebacker Darron Lee was ruled out.

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Head coach Todd Bowles said, “…he’s out this week.”  He also said he doesn’t know if the ankle injury will keep him out longer. Lee has been a bright spot on a lackluster defense, and taking him out means the defense will be missing a key component to stopping the run.  Now even more pressure will fall on the Jets offense to perform well on Sunday.

The one thing the Jets had going for them in this game is the ability to stop the run, and now it will be more difficult.  Quarterback Geno Smith has been turnover prone, but the Jets may have limited possessions in this game if they can’t stop the run.

So far this season the Jets haven’t had more than 11 possession in any game.  They have also held the football for only an average of 30:33.

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Smith’s history of turnovers is well documented.  His fourth quarter interception in Arizona on Monday night was his 43rd career turnover in just 32 games.

However, that turnover was in garbage time, and while the Jets’ hopes were completely dashed, they probably weren’t coming back anyway.

The offensive line play has been better this year than in his first two seasons, though.  Through his first two seasons, the offensive line allowed 288 quarterbacks sacks and hits, which was fifth most in the league, and this season, they’re in the middle of the pack with 46.

Additionally, running back Matt Forte will have to do more in this game than 3.5 yards per carry, but with Smith in the backfield, and the threat of deep throws, some running lanes should open.  Also, their young receivers will have to utilize their speed.

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Furthermore, the Jets must catch the football when it’s thrown their way.  According to Sporting Charts, they have the second-most drops in the NFL only trailing the Detroit Lions.  So far, both the offense and defense have faltered.  The offense will need to lift this team on Sunday.

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