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The Schedule's Soft Underbelly

Things get easier going forward for the Jets on paper at least.

Before the season began, the Jets’ first five games shaped up like so: at Houston, a dominant home team; home to perennial nemesis New England and defending AFC South champion Tennessee; and at New Orleans, another dominant host, and Miami, the defending AFC East champion.

The Jets came out of the first four games with a 3-1 record and despite their rout of Buffalo on Sunday, the Dolphins (1-3) certainly aren’t the same team that knocked the Jets out of playoff contention last season. Plus, they no longer have ex-Jet Chad Pennington running the offense, now that he has been lost for the season with a shoulder injury and replaced by Chad Henne.

And after their Monday night visit to Miami, where the Jets have won three straight, they host a 1-3 Buffalo team featuring an almost invisible Terrell Owens, and then travel to Oakland (1-3), where coach Tom Cable still is being asked about allegations that he may have slugged an assistant. After that, the Jets return home for a rematch with Miami before the bye.


It's nice to have that rough stretch in the past. In theory, easier games are ahead. Easier is a relative term in the NFL, though. Teams are relatively equal. Only a few plays decide games. I remember thinking last year after the wins at New England and Tennessee that the Jets would coast to the finish. If they could beat the Pats and Titans, surely they could handle lesser teams like the Broncos and Dolphins. It didn't work that way. The Jets should set themselves well in the next quarter of the season, but they need to show the same level of play.

What record do you think the Jets will have after 8 games?