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Monday Night Football Preview: Favre’s Dramatic Return To East Rutherford

Brett Favre has always hinted about wanting to play with Randy Moss --- his wish has now been granted.  The timing couldn't be more perfect, as he travels back to NJ to face his former team on Monday Night Football.  The 41-year-old veteran could definitely use some help, being that he's thrown just two touchdowns to six interceptions thus far this season.

The Jets are playing excellent football and clicking on all cylinders, coming off winning back-to-back-to-back divisional games, something they haven't done since 2000.

On top of that, they will have the following playmakers back and in action on Monday night: CB Darrelle Revis (the "real" 2009 DPOY), WR Santonio Holmes (Super Bowl XLIII MVP), and OLB Calvin Pace (Eli Manning's worst nightmare).

The game kicks off at 8:35 P.M. EST and will air on ESPN. Let's break it down.  

Between the numbers

  • Jets rank No. 1 in turnover margin (+8) while Vikings Rank No. 26 (-3).
  • Jets offense ranks No. 1 in rushing yards (167.8 ypg) and  No. 3 in rushing attempts (32.8/game) while Minnesota ranks No. 9 against the run (87.3 ypg). 

Bye week

ESPN NY's Rich Cimini notes Favre is 7-1 coming off a bye week. 

Minnesota Is coming off a bye week, which usually gives them a strategic advantage as they can watch more film and prepare. Then again, they are coached by Brad Childress, one of the worst gameday coaches in the NFL.  Take that for what it's worth.

Road Woes

Minnesota has lost their last 5 road games dating back to last season. This is a team that plays well within the confines of their own dome, but struggles to win on the road.

Giveaways Vs. Takeaways

Jets league the league with a +8 turnover margin this season. Gang Green has forced nine turnovers (4 interceptions, 5 fumbles). Six of these said turnovers have come at New Meadowlands Stadium.

Minnesota ranks No. 28 in giveaways, as they've turned the ball over 8 times this season (6 interceptions, 2 fumbles).

Do the math.

Shut down AP

Peterson is a game-changer. He's the type of guy that can be the perfect counter to a blitz-heavy, aggressive, 3-4 defense like the one DC Mike Pettine employs. Jets must wrap him up early and not allow him to run free in the open field. I'd like to see them stack the box and hit him as soon as he's been handed the ball. They must play him physical.

If the Jets can keep Peterson at bay and put Minnesota in strictly passing downs shifting the pressure onto Favre, I like their chances.

QB Comparison:

Let the numbers do the talking -- Sanchez ranks No.4 in NFL with a prolific passer rating of 105.3, while Favre ranks No. 28, at 60.4.

"Sophomore Slump"

QB Mark Sanchez is proving the doubters wrong with a phenomenal TD/INT ratio of 8:0. He's making good pre-snap reads, has been much more accurate with his throws, and he's making smart decisions with the football.

All we ask of him is to be a game manager. He is currently doing just that, and a little bit more.

On Offense

I believe Schotty will return to the ground-and-pound, running to setup the pass. We will always be a ball control team, looking to control the clock and the tempo of the game. With the acquisition of WR Randy Moss, Minnesota has now become the oldest team in the NFL (in terms of age). Jets' gameplan will be to keep the Vikings' veteran defensive unit on the field, wearing them down in the second half so RB Shonn Greene can trample them.

For the first time that I can ever remember, the Jets have a plethora of targets to attack opposing defenses. This will help keep defenses honest and open it up for our running game. And that Tomlinson guy, well he's pretty good, rushing 56 times for 341 yards and 3 TDs this season.

With Holmes now in the lineup, we now have two legitimate vertical threats to stretch opposing defenses. Our receiving corps is now comprised of Edwards-Holmes-Cotchery, all of which are forces to be reckoned with on the receiving end. Coupled with TE Dustin Keller, this makes it extremely tough for opposing defenses to defend against and will allow Braylon Edwards to see a lot more single coverage and open it up for him over the top.

I love the balance the Jets have had on offense this year, rushing 32.8 times/game and passing 26.2 times/game.

On Defense

Jets rank No.3 against the run and I think bottling up RB Adrian Peterson is the key to victory in this game. If the Jets can hit him at the line, wrap him up, and not allow him to run free in the open field, I believe they can render Minnesota's offense one-dimensional with ‘gunslinger' Favre heaving the ball down the field and trying to carry his team.

I look for Jets to bring pressure early and often, against an offensive line which has struggled in pass protection and allowed six sacks in the first three games.

Pettine's blitz schemes will force the ‘gunslinger' to get the ball out of his hands quickly, which could be a problem for him. Furthermore, because of how well we disguise coverage and the deceptiveness that the 3-4/4-3 hybrid entails, if Favre chooses to make impulsive decisions, he could be looking at one of his famous multiple turnover games. If he makes it a habit of throwing into coverage, it will be a long night for the old man.


Jets 23, Vikings 17.