‘Come On In, Let’s Huddle Up, Talk About The Buffalo Bills’
by Dave Staba (@DavidStaba) - posted 10:54 am, November 17, 2013
We’ll be honest — we haven’t watched a moment of New York Jets football since the rather heinous Week 3 game in New Jersey.
So We Want Marangi asked the greatest Jet of all to break down today’s rematch at Ralph Wilson Stadium for us (and by “asked,” we mean “found this clip on YouTube”).
But it’s worth watching for Broadway Joe’s animated enthusiasm, which survives despite his recent strained relationship with the franchise he led to one of the great upsets in sports history, as well as the array of screen caps from his other ventures into the realm of online video.
He does not mention a Jets defensive line that keys the NFL’s top run defense, as well as a pass rush that sacked E.J. Manuel eight times in September.
New York picked up Reed after he was waived by Houston to help a secondary that has not been nearly as dominant. Any chance of Buffalo exploiting that relative weakness relies on Manuel remaining upright, a group of receivers missing starters Stevie Johnson and Robert Woods getting open, and Manuel overcoming the forecast wind and rain to get them the ball.
Interestingly, the greatest quarterback ever to wear the green and white (and there really is no No. 2), does not mention Manuel or the second quarterback taken in last spring’s draft, Geno Smith.
Thanks to New York’s defense and revived running game, which carried the Jets to a 26-20 upset of New Orleans in their last game before their bye, Smith hasn’t had to do a whole lot. And he hasn’t, going 8-of-19 for 115 yards against New Orleans.
Manuel was even less effective in his first game back after missing a month, and the Jets don’t figure to make things any easier, especially with starting wideouts Stevie Johnson and Robert Woods sidelined, leaving the pass-catching to an array of rookies and underachievers.
So while the Manuel-Smith rematch might be the most obvious story line going in, the outcome will probably depend on a bunch of factors neither of them can control (especially if the Jets match Pittsburgh’s success in keeping Spiller and Jackson from getting loose).
Which, given Buffalo’s matchup problems today — explored in greater detail here by Niagara Falls native, former WWM colleague and Gang Green devotee Lyle Fitzsimmons — might be the Bills’ best-case scenario.