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New York Jets vs. New England Patriots Preview: Key players, injuries, and more

EAST RUTHERFORD, NEW JERSEY - SEPTEMBER 16: Luke Falk #8 of the New York Jets looks to pass in the second half against the Cleveland Browns at MetLife Stadium on September 16, 2019 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. (Photo by Mike Lawrie/Getty Images)
EAST RUTHERFORD, NEW JERSEY - SEPTEMBER 16: Luke Falk #8 of the New York Jets looks to pass in the second half against the Cleveland Browns at MetLife Stadium on September 16, 2019 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. (Photo by Mike Lawrie/Getty Images)
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EAST RUTHERFORD, NEW JERSEY – SEPTEMBER 16: Luke Falk #8 of the New York Jets looks to pass in the second half against the Cleveland Browns at MetLife Stadium on September 16, 2019 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. New York Jets (Photo by Mike Lawrie/Getty Images)
EAST RUTHERFORD, NEW JERSEY – SEPTEMBER 16: Luke Falk #8 of the New York Jets looks to pass in the second half against the Cleveland Browns at MetLife Stadium on September 16, 2019 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. New York Jets (Photo by Mike Lawrie/Getty Images)

The New York Jets are set to take on the New England Patriots in a Week 3 matchup that could get out of hand. Here is a brief preview ahead of Sunday’s game.

The New York Jets will enter their Week 3 meeting with the New England Patriots facing seemingly insurmountable odds. As the 21.5-point underdogs, the Jets are being given no chance to win their divisional meeting this Sunday.

And in all honesty, the Vegas line should probably be even higher.

The Jets haven’t seen a point spread this wide since the 2007 season when they were 21-point underdogs against none other than the Patriots at home.

But it won’t be Kellen Clemens under center this time. Instead, it will be 24-year-old signal-caller Luke Falk making his first career NFL start.

Falk and the worn-down Jets will travel to Foxborough to take on a Patriots team that has enjoyed as good of a start to the season as any NFL team in history.

Do the Jets have any chance at winning? No, probably not. But let’s take a look at some players to watch and examine the injury report ahead of Sunday’s showdown.

Next: Jets Players to Watch

EAST RUTHERFORD, NEW JERSEY – SEPTEMBER 16: Damion Ratley #18 of the Cleveland Browns runs after a catch against Nate Hairston #21 of the New York Jets in the second half at MetLife Stadium on September 16, 2019 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. New York Jets (Photo by Mike Lawrie/Getty Images)
EAST RUTHERFORD, NEW JERSEY – SEPTEMBER 16: Damion Ratley #18 of the Cleveland Browns runs after a catch against Nate Hairston #21 of the New York Jets in the second half at MetLife Stadium on September 16, 2019 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. New York Jets (Photo by Mike Lawrie/Getty Images)

Jets Players to Watch

The Offensive Line

The Jets have had a disappointing start to the season, but no unit has been more disappointing than the offensive line. And if the offense is going to put together anything, they’ll need the offensive line to step it up.

The line is beat up but all five starters are expected to start. That said, center Ryan Kalil was benched last week and left tackle Kelvin Beachum was manhandled by Myles Garrett. The Jets will need a better outcome this week if they are to remain competitive.

New York Jets: Nate Hairston looking to make the most of his opportunity. Related Story

Nate Hairston, CB

The Jets made the decision to bench starting cornerback Trumaine Johnson ahead of the team’s Week 2 matchup with the Cleveland Browns. In his place, former Indianapolis Colts cornerback Nate Hairston stepped into the starting lineup.

And to his credit, Hairston actually fared pretty well given that he was covering Odell Beckham for the majority of the game. With Julian Edelman handling slot duties and Antonio Brown no longer with the team, expect Hairston to be primarily matched with Josh Gordon.

Next: Patriots Players to Watch

MIAMI, FLORIDA – SEPTEMBER 15: Josh Gordon #10 of the New England Patriots runs with the ball after a reception against the Miami Dolphins during the third quarter at Hard Rock Stadium on September 15, 2019 in Miami, Florida. New York Jets (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)
MIAMI, FLORIDA – SEPTEMBER 15: Josh Gordon #10 of the New England Patriots runs with the ball after a reception against the Miami Dolphins during the third quarter at Hard Rock Stadium on September 15, 2019 in Miami, Florida. New York Jets (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)

Patriots Players to Watch

Josh Gordon, WR

Speaking of, Gordon will likely draw a matchup with Hairston in this one while Darryl Roberts draws the speedy Phillip Dorsett. Gordon is an extremely talented receiver who has had a slow start to the season so far.

But working against the inexperienced Hairston, he could be in-line for a breakout performance. A major key for this Jets defense will be limiting Tom Brady and the passing attack and a lot of that could revolve around limiting Gordon.

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Michael Bennett, DE

As touched on earlier, the Jets offensive line has been an absolute mess so far this season and last week could have been one of the worst showings from a Jets offensive line in years. Much of that revolved around left tackle Kelvin Beachum’s struggles.

Already dealing with an ankle injury and receiving little help from the coaching staff, Beachum surrendered three sacks to Myles Garrett. This week, Beachum will be matched up with Michael Bennett who recorded his first sack of the season last week against Miami.

Next: Jets Injury Report

New York Jets (Photo by Todd Kirkland/Getty Images)
New York Jets (Photo by Todd Kirkland/Getty Images)

Jets Injury Report

Out/Doubtful

Sam Darnold, Jordan Jenkins, C.J. Mosley (D), Quinnen Williams (D), Demaryius Thomas (D)

The Jets continue to suffer from numerous injuries to both sides of the ball as Sam Darnold, C.J. Mosley, and Quinnen Williams are all unlikely to play this week with Darnold already being declared out. However, two new names join the doubtful/out list this week.

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Edge rusher Jordan Jenkins injured his calf last week and the newly-acquired Demaryius Thomas reaggravated a hamstring injury. Jenkins has already been declared out which should force Tarell Basham into the starting lineup while Thomas will also likely miss this week’s game.

Questionable

Kelvin Beachum, Josh Bellamy, Trenton Cannon, Steve McLendon, Rontez Miles, Kelechi Osemele, Brian Poole, Brian Winters

The injuries continue for the Jets with a whopping eight players listed as questionable for this week’s matchup. Out of the eight, Josh Bellamy, Trenton Cannon, Rontez Miles, Kelechi Osemele, and Brian Poole are all new additions to the final injury report.

All of the eight are expected to play but keep an eye on Beachum, Osemele, and Brian Winters as that’s three-fifths of the Jets’ already struggling offensive line that are banged up. If any of them go down, we could see players like Chuma Edoga, Alex Lewis, or Tom Compton forced into action.

Next: Patriots Injury Report

FOXBOROUGH, MASSACHUSETTS – AUGUST 22: James Develin #46 of the New England Patriots looks on from the sideline during the preseason game between the Carolina Panthers and the New England Patriots at Gillette Stadium on August 22, 2019 in Foxborough, Massachusetts. New York Jets (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)
FOXBOROUGH, MASSACHUSETTS – AUGUST 22: James Develin #46 of the New England Patriots looks on from the sideline during the preseason game between the Carolina Panthers and the New England Patriots at Gillette Stadium on August 22, 2019 in Foxborough, Massachusetts. New York Jets (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)

Patriots Injury Report

Out

James Develin

On the opposite end of the spectrum, the Patriots enter this game with a near-clean bill of health with only one player listed as “out.” That player is none other than fullback James Develin.

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New England doesn’t have a backup fullback on the active roster so expect either Matt LaCosse or Ryan Izzo — provided they play — to fill in for the time being. It’s clear that the Patriots have a significant advantage when it comes to health.

Questionable

Shilique Calhoun, Marcus Cannon, Matt LaCosse, Ryan Izzo

The Patriots also have only four players listed as questionable — half that the Jets have. But one of their questionable players may actually miss Sunday’s game — that being reserve edge rusher Shilique Calhoun who has been absent for a “non-injury” reasons.

Right tackle Marcus Cannon is expected to return to the starting lineup after missing last week’s game while the tight-end duo of Matt LaCosse and Ryan Izzo should both suit up as well.

Next. New York Jets: 15 best free agent acquisitions of all-time

Look for them to get extended looks at fullback in Develin’s absence with the possibility of Rex Burkhead playing there as well.

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