It's nice to watch the Jets win again, but it's hard to get too excited about it. Sitting at 2-5, it's highly unlikely the Jets are able to resurrect their playoff aspirations. If there were a hope of the Jets making it past week 17, they would need a few easy games against some weak opponents. It would help a lot if the Jets could go up against a team that didn't have a lot of wins. Or a team without a history of success and playoff berths. If only the Jets could find an opponent like that.
Where We Are
The Jets are in a horrible position. At 2-5, the postseason is not much but a dream. It's hard to imagine the Jets making the playoffs, but they're also a veteran team with enough talent to play their way out of good draft position. Considering how much easier the schedule gets in the second half of the season, it's quite possible the Jets could flip the script and finish with a record around 8-8. The Browns could definitely help the Jets get on that path.
Where They Are
I usually write a big, long description here, but I think the 0-7 Browns sort of speak for themselves.
|Jamar Taylor||CB||Groin||Limited Participation in Practice||Questionable|
|Marcus Burley||CB||Hamstring||Limited Participation in Practice||Questionable|
|Joe Thomas||T||--||Full Participation in Practice||--|
|Josh McCown||QB||--||Full Participation in Practice||--|
|Seth DeValve||TE||--||Full Participation in Practice||--|
|Cody Kessler||QB||Concussion||Did Not Participate In Practice||Out|
|Spencer Drango||T||--||Full Participation in Practice||--|
|Corey Coleman||WR||Hand||Limited Participation in Practice||Out|
|Cameron Erving||C||--||Full Participation in Practice||--|
|Carl Nassib||DE||--||Full Participation in Practice||--|
|Joe Haden||CB||Groin||Limited Participation in Practice||Questionable|
|Terrelle Pryor||WR||--||Full Participation in Practice||--|
If the Jets are going to get anything going on offense, they're going to need production from the offensive line this week. The run game hasn't been on par with Jets football over the last decade or so and a lot of that has been on poor run blocking. Last year the run blocking wasn't exceptional either, but Chris Ivory managed to make a lot out of a little. This year, Matt Forte hasn't shown the same kind of ability when called upon, though he has succeeded in being healthy, consistent, and productive. If he can continue that trend against the Browns with some help from the offensive line, the Jets should be able to put this one away. Matt Forte, you're this week's x-factor for the Jets.
The Browns have a handful of all star talents, but the team itself has mostly been a trainwreck in recent years. Joe Thomas is one of, if not the, best LTs in pro football history. Players like Joe Haden and Joel Bitonio are also studs at their respective positions. Despite All Pro talent at several positions, the limelight this year has mostly been focused on former quarterback turned receiver project Terrelle Pryor. Though his ability to become a legitimate threat once teams get more film on him is certainly in question, his ability to provide an otherwise lackluster offense with some kick is undeniable. With over 450 yards from scrimmage and 4 TDs over 7 games not including his handful of passes, Pryor is a real swiss army knife for the Brown's offense. The Jets have had a lot of trouble with this type of player in the past, and Pryor could be extremely dangerous for a defense struggling with injuries.
Keys To Victory
Offense: The Browns have a terrible run defense, so pound it right up the middle. Oh, and get Quincy Enunwa involved. The Browns only have 1 corner and no safeties; take advantage.
Defense: Just play it safe, it's the Browns.
The Bottom Line
I do my best not to mock the Browns for two reasons. First and foremost, I have a dear friend who is a Browns fan and I know he will read my article and break down in tears. Reason numero 2 is because it is easy to relate to the Browns as a Jets fan. There's a good reason that the Browns and Jets ranked #1 and #2 respectively on Around The NFL's Pain Rankings. Both teams have had a true run of bad luck in choosing quarterbacks and have failed to make it to the Superbowl since 1969. Both teams endure constant mockery, which can bond fanbases as it has for me and my friend. The Browns are a truly bad team right now, however, lacking talent and depth at so many positions. The future is reasonably bright considering the plethora of draft pick and handful of young, talented players on the roster. The Jets are the better team right now, though. I expect that the Jets win a sloppy, close game against the Browns this weekend.