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The Critical Next Five Games for the New York Jets: A Fan’s Perspective

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Week 6 in the NFL: A Jets Fan’s View of the Competition

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It's generally an exercise in futility to look ahead in the National Football League. With the elite teams, you have a much better chance at prognosticating results. The New England Patriots, New York Giants, Houston Texans et al will generally find a way to emerge victorious regardless of who might be injured or how they or their opponents might be playing at the time.

For teams like the New York Jets, it's a mystery. But given the shellacking the Jets endured at the hands of the San Francisco 49ers at home, the horrific quarterback play with Mark Sanchez at the helm, and injuries to players behind whom there is no depth, you might have a better shot. The next five games might be the most important in the current Jet era, given the expectations born a couple of years ago, and the apparent direction Gang Green is headed today. Here's a quick look:

Houston Texans (home, October 8) - This is the second of three consecutive home games, and might be the most humiliating because it takes place on a national Monday night stage. The Texans are the best team in the league right now, and you can't imagine Mark Sanchez penetrating their defense. This is a bad loss, and on the heels of the 49er devastation, some changes might be brewing. (Record: 2-3)

Indianapolis Colts (home, October 14) - Everyone will approach the Colt game as a psychological breather, but Andrew Luck is better than Sanchez right now - after only a few games. The Jets may squeak by, but it won't be easy. (Record: 3-3)

New England Patriots (away, October 21) - The embarrassment factor is dangerous here. The Patriots, knowing the Jets are a wounded animal, will attempt to deliver the less than humanitarian knock-out blow. Can't you see a 45-10 "nailbiter" up in Foxboro, with Tom Brady giggling and guffawing all the way through? (Record 3-4)

Miami Dolphins (home, October 28) - Here's the game that may make the difference between an ugly year, and simply a discouraging one. Pre-bye, if the Jets lose to Dolphins, Rex Ryan will lose the team with no opportunity to steal a playoff berth. The Dolphins are better than most people believed, and Ryan Tannehill is also better than Mark Sanchez after only four NFL games. Uh-oh. (Record 3-5).

Seattle Seahawks (away, November 11) - This could be another run-for-your-life game for whoever the Jet quarterback will be at the time. The Seahawks let down yesterday (September 30) after their spectacular defensive performance against Aaron Rodgers last week. Don't expect it when the Jets visit. (Record 3-6)

Glenn Vallach has been a football fan for most of his lifetime, but never played organized pigskin unless you consider the thousands of youth hours running slant routes on city streets. Don Maynard was his idol, an adulation he took seriously, complete with a number 13 stitched to his sweatshirt. He remains a New York Jet fan through so much disappointment and embarrassment over the years. Coach Rex Ryan has rekindled a dormant fire, but sometimes he feels as if he doesn't understand the likely end result of all his efforts. It has been 42 years, after all.


  • · Yahoo! Sports New York Jets page
  • · Yahoo! Sports San Francisco 49ers page
  • · Yahoo! Sports Mark Sanchez page
  • · Yahoo! Sports New England Patriots page
  • · Yahoo! Sports Tom Brady page
  • · Dennis Waszak Jr., The Associated Press, 49ers head back home with impressive win over Jets

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