By Ryan Alfieri, Editor
While the Bills may have made a ton of upgrades to their defense, their offense is almost identical to last year’s unit. Fred Jackson makes the wagon wheels turn, while Fitzpatrick’s quick decision-making gives them just enough in the passing game to be a rather productive unit when they are all in rhythm.
Here is how the Jets match up with the Bills’ offense:
Stopping Fred Jackson: The Jets have done very well against Jackson in the past, as he has never eclipsed the 82-yard mark in his career against the green and white.
While the Jets have much better depth along the line with the emergence of Kenrick Ellis and addition of Quinton Coples, the Jets will be without their stud nose tackle Sione Pouha, according to Manish Mehta of the Daily News.
Sione Po’uha (back) and S Eric Smith (knee/hip) will not play vs Bills. #nyj
— Manish Mehta(@MMehtaNYDN) September 7, 2012
The good news is that DL Mike DeVito will play, and Kenrick Ellis has been stout in Pouha’s absence. The Jets will need that to continue to slow down the Bills’ do-it-all back.
Stopping Scott Chandler: Most of the attention is going to the Revis vs. Steve Johnson matchup (who is questionable for Sunday), but Chandler is one player who could cause the most problems for the Jets.
The Jets have always struggled stopping tight ends, and a pure receiving threat in Chandler will cause for a lot of problems. Plus, if Steve Johnson does not play, the Bills would rather attack the Jets’ older safeties than attack Revis and Cro without Johnson.
Setting the Edge: The wildcard for the bills will be how they use C.J. Spiller, who can line up as either a receiver or as a runner. Expect the Bills to use him out wide to help counter their lack of talent at receiver, where they will go after Kyle Wilson.
However, while the Jets have a pretty stout run defense, they have been exposed on perimeter runs in the past. Keeping Spiller contained and wrapping up in space is going to be crucial to stopping one of the Bills’ most electric players.
Blitz galore: With Rex Ryan taking over more control of the defense, expect the Jets to roll the dice a few more times than in year’s past. The Bills’ offensive line will be tested, especially with Cordy Glenn slated as the starting left tackle according to the team website.
The Jets would probably rather put their money on their cornerbacks holding up against average receivers than their pass rush hitting home in time.
The Bills offense relies on timing and rhythm to pick apart defenses. Expect the Jets to blitz early and often to try and throw the Bills off their game.
Where will Coples line up? It will be interesting to see where and how the Jets use their first-round pick. It would be foolish to save him just for third downs, as the Bills are not going to just simply line up and run the ball on first and second down. Coples is needed to throw the Bills off their game and keep them in third-and-long situations.
I expect the Jets to move Coples all over, possibly stand him up at times. However, they need to be wary of overusing him, as he had well-documented conditioning issues during training camp.