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NY Jets vs. Cincinnati Bengals: 3 key matchups to watch in Week 3

NY Jets, Sauce Gardner
NY Jets, Sauce Gardner / Nick Cammett/GettyImages
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2. The Bengals' elite trio of receivers vs. the NY Jets' secondary

The Jets' talented new young trio at cornerback of D.J. Reed, Sauce Gardner, and Michael Carter II have shown a lot of promise in their first two games of the new season. But in Week 3, they face their stiffest challenge to date against Ja'Marr Chase, Tee Higgins, and Tyler Boyd.

However, any time a defense faces star receivers, it goes beyond individual matchups. A secondary's success against elite players is contingent upon the play of a team's safeties in support.

The Jets' safety tandem of Lamarcus Joyner and Jordan Whitehead has struggled in pass coverage this season. Everyone in the Jets secondary hasn't been on the same page thus far. As a result, they have given big plays.

A week ago, a miscommunication between Gardner and Joyner led to an easy Amari Cooper score. New York can't afford to have the same level of mishaps against the Bengals' superb pass-catching corps.

Last year, the Jets did a good job containing the electrifying Chase to three catches and 32 yards. He did score a touchdown, but most of the receiving damage was done by sure-handed Tyler Boyd (5 for 69 yards and a touchdown), and Tee Higgins (4 for 97 yards and a touchdown).

Chase could draw Reed this week, one-on-one, while Gardner duels with Tee Higgins. Chase is due for a breakout performance, and it takes a complete effort to stop him from breaking the game open, but Cincy has the supporting talent to succeed even if Chase doesn't provide his typical explosive plays.

All three Bengals receivers are capable of torching any opposing secondary, as evidenced by last season's Super Bowl. The Jets' secondary needs to be on their A-game this Sunday.

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