Florham Park, NJ – With all hope for a surprise 2017 playoff berth all but erased, and a return of one of their marquee players on the opposing sideline, the Jets will look to play spoiler when they take on the struggling Kansas City Chiefs. Both teams have dropped five of their last six games but are on two different spectrums of the NFL. The Chiefs started the season 5-0 and many expected that this was the year KC was poised for a deep playoff run. Nobody expected the Jets to win more than a couple of games this season, so while many of Kansas City’s supporters are fearing a collapse, Gang Green’s faithful look to continue to seek improvement from their young roster.
Over their recent three-game losing streak, Kansas City has been unable to score over 20 points in each game. Losses to the struggling Giants and a Bills roster that was in turmoil has many NFL experts asking when the Alex Smith train will eventually be replaced by 1st round draft pick, Patrick Mahomes. Despite this, one of the main reasons for the Chiefs failures during this skid has been the lack of a running game. Rookie, Kareem Hunt took the league by storm earlier in the year but has not rushed for over 100 yards during the Chiefs three-game skid. If the Chiefs want to fend off a big upset against the Jets, getting Kareem Hunt going is a must for the red and white.
The Jets, on the other hand, have had bad breaks throughout the entire season in the second half. Whether it is a 14 point lead against their arch rivals or a two-point lead in the final quarter against a playoff team, the Jets have found new excruciating ways to lose football games. Even with these narrow losses, there is a lot to like about this young Jets team that was expected by some to go 0-16 to start the season. Robby Anderson caught two touchdown passes in the Jets latest 35-27 loss to Carolina but has shown that there are plenty of weapons on offense. While the Jets sit at a lowly 4-7, their record is not indicative of how hard they fought and how close they are to becoming true winners.
WHEN: Sunday, December 3rd, 2017 – 1:00 PM
WHERE: MetLife Stadium, East Rutherford, NJ
WHAT TO WATCH FOR
Jets DLine vs. Kareem Hunt- This is the matchup of the game right here. As stated before, when Hunt struggles to run the football, the Chiefs offense gets stalled and looks awful. The Jets, however, are 26th in the league against the run. If the Jets defensive line cannot contain Kareem Hunt, then it is going to be a long and ugly game for New York.
Jets Receiving Core vs. Chiefs Secondary- Kansas City’s defense is ranked 28th against the pass and Robby Anderson is fresh off of a two-touchdown performance against a great Panthers defense. He isn’t the only receiver that can have a big day, however. Tight End, Austin Seferian-Jenkins will be a matchup nightmare for the Chiefs who have struggled all year to contain TEs in ball games. When Eric Berry went down after a week one tilt against the Patriots, we knew the Chiefs would miss him, we didn’t think the defense would be exposed like this though. I expect a bid day from the Jets receiving core and Josh McCown, regardless how good Revis looks at the age of 32.
Andy Reid vs. Todd Bowles- The coaching tree of Andy Reid is an extensive one with many of his past assistants taking the helm of different franchises all over the league with successful results. Doug Pederson is 10-1, Ron Rivera made it to a Super Bowl, John Harbaugh won a Super Bowl, and Sean McDermott has the Bills in a position to make the playoffs for the first time this century. Todd Bowles is another one of Reid’s old pupils having served as defensive coordinator on the 2012 Eagles. As a whole, Reid and his team have performed well against his pupils. Reid is still one of the best offensive minds in all of football. If the Jets want to pull off the upset, Todd Bowles must out-coach Reid.
Player to Watch
Alex Smith- At the beginning of the season, Alex Smith was a potential MVP candidate and was on the path of his best season as a pro. But since the running game has taken a hit, so has Smith as he has put up less than favorable numbers during the Chief’s skid. Opposing defenses are taking away the Chiefs rushing attack which is forcing Alex Smith to win football games by himself. That is something he just cannot do. If the Jets show little respect to Smith and the passing attack, he must make them pay or else it will be four straight losses for Kansas City.
Prediction: 17-13 Jets
The Chiefs are done. Having lost five of their last six and looking absolutely hopeless in the last three and with the Chargers now breathing down their neck, a collapse is all but guaranteed at this point. Alex Smith cannot win football games without a running game and the Chiefs offense can no longer win shootouts with that porous defense the way it is. I have the Jets taking this game solely because I trust New York’s defense to make more big plays than Kansas City’s offense.
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