Rodgers’ Presence Already Has Raised Jets’ Season Ceiling

White I was having my car serviced, an attendant suggested  that the Jets would have trouble in their season opener, Monday night against the Bills at MetLife Stadium. 

He told me Rodgers initially would have trouble adjusting to a new offense in his first real test, and also second running back Breece Hall would have trouble running the ball.

Do you buy it, Jets’ fans and New York sports betting enthusiasts? Whether you do or not, these Jets will be Broadway bound.

Looking at the Jets’ schedule, the Jets don’t need the above-mentioned issues. We’ll know if we can bet on the Jets to be contenders judging by their first four games of the 2023 season.

After Buffalo, which looms as a national media event and rating bonanza for ESPN, the Jets have to travel to Dallas for a late Sunday afternoon clash the following weekend. Big D hasn’t been hospitable to New York teams in the past, and this Cowboys’ team certainly will be determined to prove something early in the season.

From there, it’s back to MetLife with the traditional showdown with Bill Belichick and the Pats, whom the Jets haven’t beaten in 14 straight games. Remember last November’s 10-3 Patriots victory in which the game was up for grabs, but Zach Wilson couldn’t get it done? 

This time around, the Jets have to get it done. They will get their proverbial monkey off their back –even though the Pats are now a shadow of themselves – and Rodgers will take a huge step forward.

The following week will be another media circus with the billed Rodgers- Patrick Mahomes showdown when the Chiefs for a Sunday night showcase at MetLife.

Over the first four weeks of the season, the Jets have two prime-time games and one likely billed as Fox’s “America’s Game of the Week,” that being the Dallas-based game.

That should tell you something. The league plans to utilize Rodgers as much to be a ratings magnet, and the Jets will need to take the cue. These Jets will be the poster team in 2023 much like Namath and his squad was after they won the Super Bowl.

New York will be a pressure cooker again, and the rest of the media will follow in unison. The bullseye is on the Jets. Their days seen as the longshot contender and the usual role of “Same Old Jets” are over.

There shouldn’t be any more satisfaction from a seven-win season anymore. 

Woody Johnon, Joe Douglas, and Robert Saleh wanted Rodgers as the “missing piece” to win a championship. Now they have him, and they need to put all the pieces together.

It seems like an eternity ago that there was a rising swell for the Jets to sign Derek Carr, and a large number of Jets’ fans and critics –including myself – thought Rodgers wouldn’t be able to get it done.

But Carr took his act to the Big Easy and Rodgers came to the Big Apple.

As far as the rest of the schedule, the Jets also have games against the Chargers, Raiders, and Browns that will be prime-time ones. They have their annual clash with the Giants, and welcome the high-flying Eagles to MetLife.

It will be an all-hands-on-deck approach all season. The Jets’ vaunted defense can’t afford to slip a notch, and Hall has to show the same form he did before his injury last season.

Their long-awaited quarterback Messiah, but he’ll need help to navigate through an arduous ascent toward the Promised Land.

Do you buy it?

About the Author

Jeff Moeller

Jeff Moeller has been covering the NFL, NBA, MLB, NHL and college football and basketball as well as high school sports on a national and local scene for the past 39 years. He has been a Jets and Giants beat reporter for the past 13 years.

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