Predictions for New York Jets' Preseason Contest with Indianapolis Colts

Aidan MackieSenior Analyst IAugust 3, 2014

Jul 24, 2014; Cortland, NY, USA; New York Jets quarterback Tajh Boyd (3) drops back to pass during training camp at SUNY Cortland. Mandatory Credit: Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Jets will play their first game of the 2014 season in a matter of days, and although the result is meaningless, it's an important one nonetheless. 

The exhibition will play a crucial role in deciding which players make the final roster and, ultimately, contribute to the team. It's also a good way to see what kind of depth Gang Green will have for the upcoming season. 

With that said, here are some predictions for the Jets' August 7 contest with the Indianapolis Colts.


Kerry Hyder Impresses 

Not much was expected of undrafted free agent Kerry Hyder entering the offseason, especially considering the team's excess of talented defensive linemen. 

However, the Texas Tech product has been one of Gang Green's most surprising players in training camp thus far. 

The 23-year-old has been so impressive in practice that coach Rex Ryan complemented his performance and called him a "pleasant surprise." 

Hyder should continue his strong training camp with a solid game against the Colts, as they lack a dangerous rushing attack and have a questionable offensive line. 

Hyder will certainly get the opportunity to make an impact, as the starters will in all likelihood be confined to the bench. 


Dec 29, 2013; Miami Gardens, FL, USA; New York Jets tight end Zach Sudfeld (82) tosses the football during a game against the Miami Dolphins at Sun Life Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

Zach Sudfeld Is New York's Top Target

All the headlines about Gang Green's tight end depth chart entering training camp were about rookie Jace Amaro and recently re-signed Jeff Cumberland. 

However, an unlikely figure has emerged as the Jets' most impressive tight end thus far. 

Zach Sudfeld is a New England Patriots castoff few expected to be anything more than a depth provider, but he's been one of the team's only consistent receiving threats. 

Sudfeld has received praise from nearly everyone around New York's camp. 

With Amaro and Cumberland likely to be on the sidelines against Indianapolis, Sudfeld will likely start. 

Expect the 25-year-old Nevada product to receive a boatload of targets from his quarterback, as he's become one of the offense's most trusted weapons.

If he gets a lot of looks, Sudfeld could be one of the game's standout players.


Tajh Boyd Continues to Struggle

Jun 17, 2014; Florham Park, USA; New York Jets quarterbacks  Matt Simms (5), Geno Smith (7) ,  Michael Vick and Tajh Boyd (3) with quarterback coach David Lee during New York Jets minicamp at Atlantic Health Training Center. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murr

While Hyder and Sudfeld have been two of training camp's feel-good stories, Tajh Boyd has been one of the major disappointments. 

Boyd, taken in the sixth round of this offseason's draft, was expected to overtake Matt Simms as the team's No. 3 quarterback. 

However, the Clemson product has struggled mightily in training camp, as he's failed to adapt to the pace of NFL play and learn the playbook. Boyd's accuracy and decision-making have also been subpar.

Boyd has the physical talent and mechanics to be a solid NFL signal-caller, but it may take a while for him to get acclimated to the league. 

Expect the 23-year-old to continue to struggle when he's asked to lead an offense on several drives against a Colts secondary that can force turnovers at a dangerous rate. 

The first preseason game is far from the most exciting contest of the season, but there are plenty of storylines to follow when kickoff comes around later this week.