NY Jets Winner: The cornerbacks
Despite the offense's struggles for most of the game, the Jets' defense actually held their own. And more importantly, the Jets cornerbacks did their part against a very talented group of wide receivers.
Brandin Echols and Michael Carter II received the start alongside Bryce Hall at cornerback, and all three players did a good job of limiting the Panthers' passing production.
Carter likely played the best as he had a couple of excellent pass breakups including a beauty of a deflection working against Terrace Marshall in the first quarter. Even Javelin Guidry had his moments as he rotated with Carter in the slot.
The Jets should be pleased with the play of their young cornerbacks in Week 1. Let's see what happens when they face a quarterback who might be able to take advantage of them more in the future.
NY Jets Loser: The running game
The Jets' offensive line didn't just fail to protect their young quarterback, they also weren't able to open up any running lanes all game long.
The Jets finished with just 40 rushing yards on 17 carries for a lowly average of 2.4 yards per carry in Week 1. None of Tevin Coleman, Ty Johnson, or Michael Carter could get anything going on the ground.
And it's hard to place the fault on them either. The Jets' offensive line was dominated up front and the lack of a running game forced the team to become one-dimensional at times.
The Jets must figure out ways to work around their offensive line. Otherwise, it's going to be a long season for both Zach Wilson and the team's running backs.