Robert Saleh was spot on when he told reporters that his NY Jets defense has faced some of the best QBs in the league this season and “embarrassed them all.” Josh Allen, Patrick Mahomes, and Jalen Hurts all coughed up the ball repeatedly against the Jets, but what happened with the other QBs the Jets have faced this year?
I personally would like to add Russell Wilson to that elite tier since he has a ring, has spent years of his career as a consistent MVP candidate, and has quietly been in the top five in touchdowns for the majority of the season.
His 13:4 touchdown-to-interception ratio still remains one of the better ratios in the league despite the Broncos being a very loud dumpster fire in the headlines — but I will refrain from including him.
Still, he hasn’t been even remotely close to the level of poor play from Dak Prescott or Mac Jones this year –— Prescott's ratio is 6:4, and Jones' is 7:7 for a combined total of 13:11.
Despite struggling against almost every other team, Prescott's best passer rating in a game this season came against the Jets. Jones' only game without an interception this season was against the Jets until achieving this again in last week’s upset win against the Bills.
Since those games against Prescott and Jones happened in Weeks 2 and 3, respectively, it’s fair to question whether or not this was a result of early-season kinks or jitters.
But on either side of this run, they dominated Josh Allen in Week 1 and made Patrick Mahomes look like Jackson Mahomes in Week 4. Are they playing up to the elite and then playing down to the struggling QBs?
What will the NY Jets defense look like against Tyrod Taylor?
Against Tyrod Taylor, they have a chance to face another QB who is not considered elite. However, maybe his season play will cause them to play up because he’s coming off of a game where he had 279 yards, two touchdowns, zero interceptions, and a passer rating of 116.9.
In comparison, Zach Wilson’s best game as a pro (versus the Chiefs) was 245 yards, two touchdowns, zero interceptions, and a passer rating of 105.2. If Taylor were to repeat those stats against the Jets, that would be the highest passer rating the Jets defense has allowed at any point over the last two seasons.
So, will they play up to the quality Taylor has provided thus far? In just two starts, he has more 200-yard games than Wilson this year and already has half the amount of passing touchdowns that Wilson has in six games.
Or, will they play down to the name value of Taylor and add him to that list of middling QBs like Prescott and Jones, who aren’t special but have a special outing against the Jets? Time will tell.