Admit it. After the Jets went an abysmal 4-12 last season – and after the embarrassing Geno Smith incident this summer – you assumed it would be another AFC-East-doormat kind of season for New York.
Well, it hans’t been. The Jets have already matched their win total from all of last season and are a legitimate threat to make the playoffs. In fact, a win over the Patriots in Foxboro on Sunday would put them atop the division.
So yeah, if you’re a Jets fan, you have to like the edge and moxie with which the Jets are playing this season.
“I like where they’re at a lot,” WFAN Jets reporter Chris Lopresti said on CBS Sports Radio’s Ferrall on the Bench. “There’s no reason not to. They’re 4-1, the defense is turning people over left and right, they’re the No. 1 scoring defense, and they’re at the top of the league in a lot of different categories. Those offseason moves and all the money that they’ve spent is certainly paying off. They’re doing enough on offense to make plays when they need to, and obviously Chris Ivory has been tremendous the last two games.”
Ivory combined for 362 total yards and two touchdowns in wins over Miami and Washington earlier this month. The Jets are obviously hoping for another strong performance from Ivory on Sunday, but that might be harder to come by against New England.
“Going into Foxboro against this team – against the Patriots that are obviously clicking on all cylinders right now – to me, it’s a whole different animal,” Lopresti said. “So I’m going to learn a lot more about this team this week. I’ve obviously liked what I’ve seen through five games.”
All, or at least most, of the credit has to go to Todd Bowles’ no-nonsense approach to, well, pretty much everything.
“I like what Todd Bowles has come in and done,” Lopresti said, “and he’s talked about it openly. He’s trying to build his own culture here with the Jets. It’s a much different feel. Normally with Rex Ryan, we’ll be hearing from him all week long about ‘Oh, we’re going up there to beat the Pats’ and this and that, guaranteeing wins and talking about kissing Bill Belichick’s rings and stuff like that. You didn’t get any of that this week from the Jets. You got an even-keeled, calm approach. It’s just another week. We’re preparing for them the same way we prepare for any other team, so they’re saying all the right things. They’re trying to keep themselves focused on the ultimate goal, and that’s (trying to) find a way to win a road game against a very tough team. I think they’re going in with the right mindset and mentality, so I don’t have any issue with that. It’s just once we get on the field Sunday, I want to see this defense prove to me that they can do it against one of the top offenses in the league. I’m not so sure that they can. If they do, I’m going to really buy in.”