Two short weeks ago, the Jets looked as if they could run with any team in the NFL. They were riding high on a five-game winning streak, they beat their rivals the Patriots, and they destroyed the previously undefeated Titans.
Both of these huge wins also came away from The Meadowlands.
Quickly made to be Super Bowl contenders, the Jets were the talk of the league almost out of nowhere.
Two weeks later, at 8-5, and in a three-way tie atop the AFC East with the Patriots and the Dolphins, the Jets are now fighting for a trip to the postseason instead of being a virtual lock.
Some have blamed this on the Jets being the typical Jets.
Blowing games they should have won, barely showing up, the list goes on and on.
Others have blamed it on almost everything else with the team currently.
Whether it is Brett Favre not being able to air it out, Thomas Jones getting a lack of carries, and the receivers doing next to nothing, many feel as if most of the blame falls on the offense.
In connection with this, the rest either are throwing the defense under the bus, which may be warranted with their terrible play over the last two games, or are saying that the coaches are not doing their jobs.
These arguments are all valid.
Simply put, over the last two weeks, the Jets have not looked like a team that can make the playoffs.
Even worse, the Jets, with their play over the last two weeks, do not deserve to be in the playoffs if this is going to be the way that they play for the rest of the season.
The real question is though, which Jets team will decide to show up on Sunday?
Will it be the world-beaters of a half-month ago, or will it be the disgusting product that is currently taking the field lately?
The answer to this question is, who knows?
This much is known though.
With the Bills coming to town on Sunday, the Jets need to play well from the opening whistle, and prove that the last two weeks are out of their systems.
They have to overpower the Bills, who are currently at 6-7, and in last place in the AFC East.
This is not your typical 6-7 team.
Yes, they have cooled off recently, but in the first six games of the season, they were being hailed as Super Bowl contenders.
While scoring only six points total over the last two games, this team could still wake up in a hurry, and this could spell trouble for the Jets.
Whether it is Lee Evans catching deep balls from whoever is under center Sunday, which, at this point, looks like it will be Trent Edwards, who was out last week with an injury while J.P. Losman got the offense nowhere, or Marshawn Lynch, who can control any game even in the midst of the uneven season that he has had, this team can move the ball when playing well.
Each and every single team in the league goes through a rough patch during the season, and for the Bills offense, things honestly cannot get much worse at the current time. There is nowhere to go but up for this group, and the Jets need to be aware of this.
In addition, the defense and the special teams of the Bills can be a force whenever they are on.
If the Jets are not careful, the Bills could very well beat them with just their defense and their special teams.
Translated, you get the idea. The Bills are a trap game.
If the Jets snooze through this game, it will probably not even be close.
Will they be asleep at the wheel though on Sunday?
Although all common logic probably says yes at this point, do not bet on it.
First off, will Brett Favre let this team play awful from the first snap with a playoff berth on the line? Will he let his team possibly ruin his comeback from retirement?
Of course not.
Will Favre mess it up though?
While he has had some ugly games this season, how many losses have truly been his fault, and his fault alone?
The answer here is none. Look for this streak to continue on Sunday.
As a result of Favre willing the team, he will spread the ball around, and the receivers will actually be a factor in this game.
While they may not have amazing stats, they will still move the chains when called upon, and they will keep the Bills defense on their heels as a result.
The defense and the special teams? They will do enough to get the Jets by.
The defense may struggle at times with a team that has had no offensive punch recently, but they will make the stops when they need to this time around.
The special teams will go back to the basics as well, and the result will be decent field position throughout the game for the Jets.
This will make Thomas Jones the "X" factor.
Over the past two weeks, he has produced, even though he has, for some reason, not touched the ball a lot.
Look for this to change on Sunday, and in a big way as well.
The only reason the Jets have been in games over the past two weeks is because of the almost freakish efforts from Jones.
He has run like a man possessed, and even the Jets coaching staff will make sure he gets the ball as a result on Sunday.
In front of the homecrowd, look for Jones to be the best player on the field for the entire day.
Through running the ball, and through making crucial catches when all the other targets for Favre are covered, Jones will prove to be the difference on Sunday for the Jets.
He will keep the Bills defense on the field for long periods of time, and this will gas them before the fourth quarter begins.
Look for the Jets offense to take advantage of this as a result, and to control the tempo of the game because of this.
While the game will be a little too close to truly enjoy, the Jets will emerge with a win to the tune of 24-14 by the end of the game.
They will then be 9-5, and hopefully, all of the recent talk of a Jets collapse will subside once and for all.
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