Three down, three to go. Winners of three consecutive games, the Jets go into Sunday riding a winning streak and looking to keep the momentum. Fortunately, they get the benefit of facing a team that has been terrible when playing games on the road this season..
"Hot-Lanta", a warm-weather team that is more accustomed to playing in domes, faces the tough task of traveling to the Meadowlands where they not only have to endure playing in a Sub-40 degree climate and snowy conditions, but also will likely be without both stars -- Matt Ryan AND Michael Turner.
Trouble With Moving the Chains Consistently:
ATL has struggled all year stringing together long, sustained drives. This offense is not a possession-based/"third and manageable" one like the one we run. In fact, quite the opposite. This team has lived off the big play all year but unfortunately for them they have died by it as well. Furthermore, all three of their home-run hitters may be out (Ryan, Turner, and White). Even if White does play he will be going up against Revis which will not fare well for him.
Now they are going up against the #1 defense in the NFL who has specialized in defending the big play all year. On top of that, Redman will try to throw on the #1 secondary in the NFL (148.3 ypg) - it's going to be tough for him to get in any rhythm. I see a lot of 3-and-outs leading to plenty of punts from Atlanta tomorrow.
Can we play 16 home games?
Atlanta is 1-5 playing away from the Georgia Dome. They have been a Dr.Jekyl/Mr. Hyde of home/away this season, which is certainly not surprising for a young team. The Jets also get the benefit of having them play in a climate that may be unknown and unfavorable to them. They have not played in a game temperature of under 53 degrees this season (Since playing the Giants at the Meadowlands).
29th Overall Defense:
That's what ATL is ranked, as they give up 375.7 ypg.
Seems like a recurring theme every week when we talk about how the Jets Pro-Bowl OL/#1-Ranked Rush Offense will be able to run the football at will, but nothing changes this week -- as ATL is ranked 23rd against the run giving up 117.8 ypg. They are also considerably worse on the road... where they give up 401.8 ypg... (268.2 pass/ 133.7 run).
To all Fantasy Football players -- if you're still in the running, it would be smart to start Thomas Jones tomorrow! He should have yet another big game on the ground, as his value and importance increases this week with the poor weather conditions.... and a Mark Sanchez who will be sporting two knee braces.
Mike Smith won the head-coaching job in Atlanta over Rex Ryan (who was a potential candidate). It's certainly plausible that he would want to send the message to the Falcon's Organization that they made the wrong choice (although Smith did do a phenomenal job last season).
Also, the Jets obviously know their backs are against the wall in this spot as they have to win out this season to stay in the playoff hunt. There is no room for a letdown or loss.
The Falcons were officially eliminated from playoff contention after the Cowboys won in the Superdome earlier tonight. What motivation will Atlanta have to get up for this game?
23-13, GangGreen rolls on -The defense and the run-game will help the Jets dominate the time of possession and shorten the game, while also controlling field position. ATL's inability to consistently gain first downs will be the death of them. Schotty will put Sanchez in a position where he simply needs to be a game-manager (as Clemens was last week), and he will do just that.