The unbeaten New York Jets who manhandled Jacksonville in their last outing, will head out west to take on a much-improved Oakland Raiders who will be hell bent on rising from the ashes and erasing the memories of a heart wrenching loss to Buffalo just one short week ago.
The Jets success on Sunday came not from its offense but its defense, which dominated the Jaguars, holding them to just 203 total yards while intercepting Luke McCown four times and sacking him in the end zone for a safety en route to a 32-3 victory on Sunday.
New York scored 15 points off turnovers, while they themselves were held to a paltry 283 total yards of offense, led by QB Mark Sanchez, who threw a pair of touchdown passes including a 17-yarder to Santonio Holmes to open the scoring early in the first quarter.
Sanchez was 17 of 24 for 182 yards, but also threw two interceptions as well.
Meanwhile, the Jets struggled on the ground picking up just 101 yards, but Shonn Greene did cap off a third quarter drive with a one yard touchdown run.
Those numbers could climb against a Raiders defense that did all but leave the stadium entirely, blowing a 21-3 halftime lead that included the game-winning touchdown with 14 seconds remaining, as they fell to the Bills 38-35.
All the blame in this one can be solely placed on the Raiders defenders that surrendered 481 total yards to go along with 35 second half points, all while allowing the Bills to pick up 217 yards and two touchdowns on the ground.
In the meantime, the offense did its job putting up 35 points and 454 yards behind a solid effort from QB Jason Campbell who had one of the best games of his career, completing 23 of 33 passes for 323 yards with three touchdowns.
Darren McFadden continued to be Oakland’s workhorse both on the ground and through the air, accumulating 143 total yards with both a rushing a receiving touchdown.
This is matchup of two teams with different strengths, and should make for a very interesting game.
However, these types of games are always tough on bettors, as you never really know which team will show up, as both the Raiders and Jets have proven this in the past.
But this is a new season, and Oakland looks to be much-improved from where they were a year ago, while the Jets continue to make their own improvements after a remarkable 11-5, campaign in 2010 that included a magical postseason run that included wins over the Colts and Patriots.
Matt’s Prediction: Jets 28, Oakland 21 – New York did very well on the road last year, going 6-2 during the regular season and 2-1 during the playoffs. And while I expect the Raiders to make plays and move the ball with their speed, the Jets defense is too proficient and stifling the run. Look for New York to wear down the Oakland defense, icing the game early in the final quarter.