Previewing NY’s Representation for Week 1 of the 2015-16 NFL Season

As it’s always been, the Giants and Jets will be a tale of two worlds. The Jets are on a downward spiral, while the Giants are getting stronger and deeper by the day. If you’re a fair-weather fan, you should be reaching for your blue jersey right about now.

NFL betting site splits the picks for both NY teams in Week 1. The Jets have the Cleveland Browns and are narrow favorites, while the Giants are underdogs against the Cowboys.

This isn’t shocking by any means. The Browns are likely the only team in the league that look worse than the Jets after a few weeks of preseason play. Their quarterback situation is equally as messed up as the green and whites and their depth is questionable at best.

The Jets off-season raises the question, will the team’s odds increase or decrease when Geno Smith returns from a broken jaw. Laughably, a lot of fans are thinking his absence could be a good thing for the team. In fact, a few people have referred to backup Ryan Fitzpatrick as the next Vinny Testaverde.

Vinny-T came to the Jets after stints with the Browns and Ravens and was able to put up some remarkable performances to lead the team to an AFC East title and AFC Championship game berth in his first season. It’s a long shot given the parts veteran quarterback Fitzpatrick has to work with. His wide outs and running backs are all aging and even Fitzpatrick himself at 32 is no spring chicken.

It’s not a write off though. Fitzpatrick has had success in his long career and has had ample opportunities to make the best of less-than-stellar rosters. It’s pretty humorous the optimism surrounding him over Geno. It’s a situation that could also be very bittersweet for the J-E-T-S.

Meanwhile, at Giants camp the word optimism revolves around the starters. It seems that their 6-10 previous season should be a one-off. A mishap year in a decade that has seen mostly nothing but success including a Super Bowl win in 2011.

Victor Cruz coming off a career year went down with a torn muscle in week six, ending his 2014 campaign. Running back Rashad Jennings had his first ever opportunity to lead a team’s ground game. While rookie wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr missed the first four weeks of the season.

In 2015, the Giants look like a deadly squad. Cruz and Beckham will be healthy to start week one, while Jennings has his work cut out for him for the first time as a Giant. It will no longer be his backfield as 2013 draft pick Andre Williams has looked fantastic in camp and the preseason. To add a little more spice as well, newly acquired Shane Vereen will likely handle quite a few third down carries.

Long story short – the team’s offense has gotten substantially deeper.

The defense on the other hand has suffered a few setbacks. Most notably, Jason Pierre-Pauls’ Independence Day fireworks mishap which cost him a finger and has kept him off the practice field all summer.

Though JPP is a question mark to start the season, the team isn’t shaking too much. In fact, they’re extremely high on rookie DE Owamagbe Odighizuwa. He was taken in the third round out of UCLA and has already been called the next Osi Umenyiora by some of his peers.

In the backfield, the team lost safety Antrel Rolle to free agency. The Bears picked up the veteran leaving the NYG secondary with some vulnerability. The future of the safety spots looks to be rookie Landon Collins and sophomore Nat Berhe. The team is very confident these two will develop nicely.

If you’re intrigued by the odds and lines, you should probably be active in week one. It’s safe to expect the Giants stock to rise and the Jets to sink with the return of troubled quarterback Geno Smith after a few weeks.

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