NY Jets: Top 3 players to watch in Week 8 against the Kansas City Chiefs

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NY Jets
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NY Jets

NY Jets fans should keep a close eye on these three players in Week 8 against the Chiefs.

The NY Jets are, in all likelihood, going to get absolutely destroyed this Sunday. The winless Jets will travel to Arrowhead Stadium to take on the powerhouse Kansas City Chiefs in a game that shouldn’t be close.

The Chiefs enter this game winners of six of their first seven games of the season and fresh off a dominant 43-16 victory over the Denver Broncos. The same Broncos team that beat the Jets by two scores a few weeks ago.

Actually, this time they were starting Drew Lock and not an undrafted third-string making his first career start. It didn’t matter to the Chiefs.

Kansas City is favored by nearly three touchdowns and it wouldn’t be surprising to see them cover that spread and then some. So for Jets fans, what’s the point of tuning in to watch?

The answer is simple — tune in to watch any young player who might be able to prove that they’re a part of the future.

The Jets are beginning to play more and more young players each week as they both get healthy and recognize the situation that the team is in. There’s no use giving Frank Gore 15+ touches when you have rookie La’Mical Perine waiting for an opportunity.

The Jets finally seemed to turn a corner with that mindset last week with Perine earning the lion’s share of touches.

What other players should Jets fans keep an eye on this week? Let’s take a look.

Next: 3. Quinnen Williams

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NY Jets Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

3. Quinnen Williams, DL, NY Jets

One of the only promising developments from an otherwise abysmal season has been the progress made by second-year defensive lineman Quinnen Williams.

After a disappointing rookie season, Williams has emerged as one of the Jets’ best defensive players in 2020 and looks well on his way to bigger and better things in the near future.

Williams has been effective as both a run-defender and pass-rusher earning Pro Football Focus grades north of 70.0 in both categories. The former No. 3 overall pick has recorded 10 or more pressures and run-stops with efficient rates in both.

It’s been a true coming-out party for Williams in 2020 and an excellent follow-up after an underwhelming showing last year. But with trade rumors swirling, could this be his last game as a member of Gang Green?

It’s unlikely — as it should be — but you never know.

Either way, Williams must continue to show that he can put together productive outings on a consistent basis and he’ll have the opportunity to do so against a Chiefs’ interior offensive line that isn’t nearly as strong as other positions on the team.

Another big day from Williams will go a long way towards convincing others, and the team, that he’s the real deal.

Next: 2. Ashtyn Davis

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NY Jets Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

2. Ashtyn Davis, S, NY Jets

Sunday’s game will mark the first start of Ashtyn Davis‘ NFL career — and he’s going to be put to the test right away.

Bradley McDougald has started this year opposite Marcus Maye and it’s been a difficult season for the veteran safety. Acquired in the Jamal Adams trade, McDougald has been one of the Jets’ worst overall players with an ugly Pro Football Focus grade of 41.0.

Of 82 qualified safeties, only one player has a worse grade than McDougald. And on a Jets team with very little talent, McDougald has the lowest grade of any qualified player.

Fortunately for Davis, McDougald will take a back seat this week as he’s been ruled out with a shoulder injury — an injury that could sideline him for a number of weeks.

As a result, it will finally be Ashtyn Davis’ time to shine.

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The Jets’ coaching staff raved about the third-round safety all summer and foresaw him playing a significant role on defense early in his career. But to this point, he’s primarily been used on special teams.

However, against the explosive Chiefs offense, Davis will step into a starting role. It will be interesting to see if the Jets continue to let Maye play his natural free safety role where he’s excelled as of late or if they ask him to fill in for McDougald allowing Davis to play his natural position.

Either way, Davis will have a golden opportunity in Week 8 to secure the starting job even after McDougald returns. Let’s hope he doesn’t squander it.

Next: 1. Denzel Mims

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NY Jets Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

1. Denzel Mims, WR, NY Jets

Another player who’s set to see an increase in usage as a result of injuries is second-round pick Denzel Mims. Mims made his NFL debut last week instantly making an impact by hauling in four catches for 42 yards in the first half.

Unfortunately, the Jets offense stalled in the second half, and Mims failed to record another catch. But expect him to see even more passes come his way in Week 8.

The Jets have already ruled Breshad Perriman out for Sunday and Jamison Crowder, listed as doubtful, isn’t expected to play either. That means it should be the Denzel Mims show against the Chiefs.

Starting alongside the likes of Braxton Berrios and Vyncint Smith, Mims should be Sam Darnold’s go-to target in the passing game. That’s great news for the rookie who impressed in his Jets debut last week.

Throw in the fact that the Jets will be trailing for almost all the game and he should see plenty of targets with the team likely leaning on the passing game. It’s truly a perfect storm for the former Baylor star.

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Mims will have the opportunity to establish himself as the Jets’ No. 1 outside receiver this week. And Jets fans searching for a reason to look forward to the future will surely want to tune in to see if Mims can live up to the hype.