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NY Jets vs Chicago Bears; Game Preview


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New York Jets Game Preview

For the first time since week five of the 2012 season, the New York Jets (1-1) will host a Monday night game when the Chicago Bears (1-1) travel to MetLife stadium. Kickoff is scheduled for 8:30 p.m. and will be broadcasted on ESPN.

Last week, the Jets blew a 21-3 first half lead to the Packers while the Bears came back in impressive fashion on the road in San Francisco to win 28-20.

A lot has been made of the Jets performance last week. As many players and fans noted, it can be maddening to see how good and bad the Jets can be in one game. The reality of the situation is what was perceived as weaknesses of the Jets going into the season, namely the secondary and wide receiver depth, are real problems. Furthermore, the Jets continue to play undisciplined football and seemed to lose sight of their game plan as last week’s game progressed.

The extra day of preparation could prove to be big for the Jets. WR Eric Decker and CB Dee Millinier are both hampered by injuries. Decker pulled his hamstring in the third quarter of last week’s game, which proved costly for the offense. Not only is Decker the best receiver the Jets have, he has already proved to be a reliable target for Geno Smith and is one of the best deep ball threats in the league.

Decker has not practiced this week but head coach Rex Ryan will not rule him out. According to Ryan, Decker does not need to practice for him to play Monday. With that being said, if Decker does not play, I hope it doesn’t drastically alter the game plan.

It is certainly important for the Jets to establish the run. They struggled to run against a Green Bay front seven that doesn’t strike much fear into anyone. Through two games, Chicago has yielded an average of 160 yards per game. The Jets should be able to run, and I hope they do establish a solid running game to keep an explosive Bears offense off the field, but the Jets sans Decker can still be creative through the air.

Using more packages with tight end Jace Amaro in the slot and Chris Johnson as a passing option has the potential to rack up yards after the catch. Jeremy Kerley will continue to do Jeremy Kerley things. The question becomes can anyone else step up? David Nelson was invisible for most of the Packers game.

The Jets also need more from Geno Smith. He started off on fire against the Packers and slowly faded. It’s obviously not all his fault; the play calling left more to be desired, the running game wasn’t there, and his most impressive throw of the game was taken away by a ghost timeout, but there was a stretch in the second half where he was simply missing throws. He has a tough task ahead with a Bears defense that has been impressive in stopping the pass. Rookie cornerback Kyle Fuller is already showing a knack for finding the football.

The defense, much like the offense, was unstoppable early on last week. How impressive was the front seven? They were like a hungry pack of wolves getting after Aaron Rodgers. As the game wore on the pressure subsided, Rodgers started making throws, and the play overall diminished It would probably be wise for the Jets to not get into fights that results in their best player getting kicked out the game this week too.

The status of Dee Milliner is also up in the air. He played last week but did not look good and also admitted his ankle tightened up on him during the game. If he can’t play, Antonio Allen and Darrin Walls will continue to be the starters. Allen had a rough go of things against Jordy Nelson but I’m not too down on him. Rodgers-Nelson is one of the best QB-WR duos in the league.

The Jets secondary, no matter who is playing, will have to be on top of their game. Jay Cutler is a very good quarterback playing in a great offensive system with two elite wide receivers. Brandon Marshall and Alshon Jeffery might be the best duo of wide receivers in the league. Marshall (ankle) and Jeffery (hamstring) are hobbling around with injuries but did play last week (at a very high level) and I would be surprised if either missed Monday’s game.

Scheming for that offense will be interesting. The Bears like to move the ball vertically but are very effective with using running back Matt Forte in the flats and with screens. Rookie safety Calvin Pryor had a nice “welcome to the NFL” game last week, missing a few tackles and struggling as the single high safety in a cover-1 defense. I’m sure Rex will provide him with some more help.

The Jets have played well at home. I don’t think it’s unreasonable to expect the Jets to win. Cutler is a good quarterback but is not Aaron Rodgers. Establishing the run and limiting the explosive plays should lead the Jets to victory.

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Even with our decimated secondary, the Jets might actually be catching the Bears at a decent time, who are also riddled with injuries. 





The Bears' defense will be without three opening-day starters for Monday night's game against the Jets.
Defensive tackle Jeremiah Ratliff (concussion) and linebacker Shea McClellin (fractured hand) were ruled out Saturday, joining cornerback Charles Tillman, who was placed on injured reserve this week with a torn right triceps.
McClellin revealed to reporters Saturday that he fractured one of his hands in practice Thursday.
"It's something we'll fix and cast up and go get after it," McClellin said.
On offense, receivers Brandon Marshall (right ankle) and Alshon Jeffery (left hamstring) are expected to play, although they are listed as questionable. Marshall participated in practice Saturday for the first time this week, and he was limited. 
Second-year linebacker Jon Bostic is the top candidate to replace McCllelin, who injured his hand in Wednesday's practice. Coaches have trumpeted Bostic's versatility all year, saying he could play any linebacker position in the base defense in addition to the nickel responsibilities he has carried out through two games.
Got something to say? Start the conversation and be the first to comment.
Third-round rookie Will Sutton is Ratliff's backup, but coaches believe nose tackle Stephen Paea could also play three-technique. Second-round rookie Ego Ferguson will also be part of the defensive tackle rotation.  
Cornerback and special teams ace Sherrick McManis will miss the game due to a quadriceps injury he suffered in the Week 2 win over the 49ers. That's a blow to a special teams unit that was undisciplined at times in Week 2.
Offensive linemen Matt Slauson and Roberto Garza will sit out for the second straight week with high ankle sprains.
Defensive end Trevor Scott (right foot) is doubtful.
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I hope we have a major Amaro sighting this game. Time to take the training wheels off and see what we have here.

Agreed. I would also like to see If Saunders can do a little something on offense -- especially if Decker is going to be out.

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