NY Jets to start with reservations
- Zonovan Knight
- Tyler Conklin
- Michael Carter
Again listed in order from most likely to produce to least likely, these are people who all deserve to start, especially if you think the Jets are going to win this game. I don't think the Jets will be shutting down the Lions' high-powered offense, so if they do win, they'll need at least 20 points to get there.
Zonovan Knight will surely get his chance to be a bell cow this game so he is a pretty safe bet for touches. The problem here is that we have absolutely no assurance that these touches will result in efficient yardage (or touchdowns).
In each of the last three games, the rushing attack was stumped early before Mike White opened up the playbook via the pass. The Jets struggled mightily in the first half and then came back to it in the second, which gets overlooked if you just see the final stat line in the box score.
If Wilson is unable to open up the playbook, what happens? One of the biggest issues in Wilson's last game was his inaccuracy on screen passes and those easy check-down throws. While Knight has never dropped a target in his NFL career, will he be able to keep that up with a ball thrown at his ankles?
This is a big boom-or-bust week for the rookie stud, but with the way Knight has been playing, I'd have to be insane to tell you to bench him.
Please, just beware there is a massive difference between the floor of Mike White's RB1 and the floor of any given running back who goes against a Lions' defense forfeiting the eighth fewest rushing yards in the last three games.
The biggest beneficiary of Wilson's return is Tyler Conklin, who like Mims, gets a boost for being tall, fast, and strong. Wilson will be looking for those catch radii out there and if this game becomes a shootout then we will see Wilson throw 35+ times for just the third time this season.
In those first two games that Wilson threw 35+ times, Conklin combined for nine catches on 15 targets, 131 yards, and two touchdowns. Very safe to say that if Zach Wilson plays well, Conklin will have a very good stat line.
It seems like the whole fanbase has turned on Michael Carter overnight after a forgettable performance and costly mistake in a very big game but I feel it to be a bit harsh.
Sure, his numbers are pretty much all down across the board from last year, but for the majority of last year, he was RB1 behind the 11th-best offensive line in the NFL according to PFF.
This year, he very quickly lost his RB1 status and by the time he got it back, we were already on our fourth tackle and third right guard of the season. At the end of the day, the coaches still have faith in him, and he's an invaluable presence in the locker room.
He also is the hardest running back to tackle on our entire roster, including Breece Hall. This is why even in those earlier games like Miami, Michael Carter was still the preferred choice for the goal line carries once Breece did the heavy lifting to get us there.
I wholeheartedly believe that if he was healthy in Minnesota, the Jets would've won that game because he would've been that goal-line insurance that they so desperately need (twice!).
That's why he got the call on that 2nd-and-3 and got more than the yardage the Jets needed before suffering the first fumble of his career.
In short-yardage situations this Sunday, I expect his number to be called again, which in my opinion makes him the most likely Jets player to score a touchdown this Sunday. Depending on how successful they are as a team, he could even end up with more than one.