photo via NY Jets
I love this time of year. The MLB season is just heating up, and the NBA and NHL playoffs are literally right around the corner. Yet on an NBA less night, I recognized myself going through a bout of withdrawal. Thankfully, the NFL did all of us a solid and made a slow sports night feel like Christmas with the release of the 2013 schedule.
I’ve had a chance to review the Jets schedule and although there are still many unknowns in place for the team, one thing is for sure, the scheduling gods did not have mercy on the Jets. Before we dive into specific matchups, here are a few things to note:
The Jets will play in only two prime-time games this season, down from four.
The Jets start the season at home for the fourth season in a row.
The majority of their games, 10 in all, begin at 1PM/ET this season.
For the second straight season, the Jets will not face their Metlife Stadium rivals, the New York Giants.
Aside from facing New England during Week 2, the Jets have a favorable schedule in September — Tampa Bay, New England, Buffalo, and Tennessee. However, once Week 5 hits, things certainly toughen up — Atlanta, Pittsburgh, New England, Cincinnati, and New Orleans.
The Jets don’t have a bye until Week 10. But as you see from the bullet point above, their schedule is front loaded with legit playoff contenders. This means…the Jets season could (and when I say could I really mean probably) be on life support by Week 10.
Here are some important games to circle on the calendar:
Week 1: Sunday 9.8 vs Tampa Bay, 1PM FOX
Either the league is fixed or the schedule makers have a wicked sense of humor. Everyone knows the lead trade destination for Darrelle Revis appears to be Tampa Bay. Ironically, they’re the first team to visit Metlife Stadium this September. One thing’s for sure, if Revis is indeed traded to the Bucs, I’m happy to get this game out of the way during Week 1. Enduring countless weeks of build up surrounding the return of Revis Island is not high on my list of things to do.
Week 2: Thursday 9.12 @ New England, 825PM/ET NFLN
And just like that, four days later, the Jets will be in New England taking on a Wes Welker-less Patriots. Fun!
Week 3: Sunday 9.22 @ Buffalo, 425PM/ET CBS
Back-to-back weeks we play division rivals. One team that might have a worse fate than the Jets are the Bills. I don’t expect any game to be an easy win for the Jets, but this is one game that I wouldn’t be surprised to see us take. Plus, Rex Ryan will be hellbent on winning against Mike Pettine, the Jets former defensive coordinator, now coaching for the Bills.
Week 4: Sunday 9.27 @ Tennessee, 405PM/ET CBS
This game matters for two reasons — 1) it’s where Sanchez’s awful performance complete with five turnovers occurred last season, which led to his benching. 2) It’s the new home of Shonn Greene. Although Greene is not even close to being a top tier running back, something tells me he’ll be prepared to make a statement against us that week.
Week 5: Monday 10.7 @ Atlanta, 840PM/ET ESPN
Um, I’m pretty sure the Dirty Birds are going to defecate all over the Jets. Oh, and did I mention it’s a Monday Night Football game? Yeah, this won’t be pretty for the Jets.
Week 6: Sunday 10.13 vs Pittsburgh, 1PM/ET CBS
I literally put my head in my hands and started pulling my hair because in three weeks, we play the Falcons, Steelers, and Patriots. Can you say losing streak? I’m convinced the NFL hates the Jets. Seriously.
Week 7: Sunday 10.20 vs New England, 1PM/ET CBS
Is it too early to tap out of the season?
Week 9: Sunday 11.3 vs New Orleans, 1PM/ET FOX
Rex’s brother, Rob, is the Saints’ new defensive coordinator. Not exactly the Harbowl, but still the reason to watch this game. And oh yeah, Drew Brees is possibly another draw.
Week 10: November 10 Bye
Week 11: Sunday 11.17 @ Buffalo, 1PM/ET CBS*
- Assuming the Bills draft a quarterback, the team will either be trending up or down. This game will be nothing more than a battle among desperate teams playing to avoid a fourth place finish in the division.
Week 12: Sunday 11.24 @ Baltimore, 1PM/ET CBS*
- The fact that the Ravens have lost so many of their players since winning the Super Bowl means absolutely nothing. The result will be same as its been since Rex left B-More for New York, a loss.
Week 13: Sunday 12.1 vs Miami, 1PM/ET CBS*
- It’s interesting that the Jets will be facing the Dolphins for the first time so late in the season. This off season, the Dolphins made a lot of moves to improve their team, on both sides of the ball. However, not playing them until early December could work in our favor because the strengths and weaknesses of the team will be well documented by then. Hopefully the Jets will be able to make the necessary adjustments to actually compete against them. Ahhh, who am I kidding?
Week 14: Sunday 12.8 vs Oakland, 1PM/ET CBS*
- Last year, the Raiders went 4-12. During the offseason, they made some changes to their coaching staff which included hiring the Jets former offensive coordinator, Tony Sparano as an assistant head coach and offensive line coach. That is why this game matters. Sparano was a complete waste for the Jets. Although this game is extremely late in the season and the fate of each team may be determined by then, the return of Sparano will be much hyped.
Week 17: Sunday 12.29 @ Miami, 1PM/ET CBS*
- The final game of the season will be meaningless to the Jets because they will not be contending for a playoff spot. However, they could play a role in the Dolphins playoff hopes. Spoiler alert?
Yeah…so…saying the Jets have an unfavorable schedule is an understatement. This time last season, despite missing the playoffs, I was optimistic that the Jets would be able to recover. I predicted they’d go 10-6. Instead, they went 6-10. This season, I’m a lot more realistic and pessimistic about their chances. So far, they’ve given me no reason to believe that they’ll be able to turn things around. I’ve accepted the need to rebuild and have set the bar excruciatingly low. I predict the Jets will finish the season with a 5-11 record.
What are your thoughts on the Jets schedule and my outlook on their season? Sound off in the comments below!
*subject to NFL Flex schedule