Which games will decide if the Jets are for real? | Yahoo Fantasy Football Forecast
Yahoo Fantasy analysts Matt Harmon and Dalton Del Don examines which matchups will ultimately determine if Aaron Rodgers and the Jets are contenders. Hear the full conversation on the “Yahoo Fantasy Football Forecast” - subscribe on Apple, Spotify, Stitcher or wherever you get your podcasts.
MATT HARMON: Are the Jets legit with Aaron Rodgers? Obviously, that's another big question about the season. I got three games here that I think we will kind of know the answer to that. Number one, Bills at Jets, "Monday Night Football," week 1. I think, obviously, people are going to react extremely harshly one way or another based on how that Jets game goes against the Bills there.
The Chiefs at Jets in week 4 on "Sunday Night Football." Like I mentioned, we're going to see a lot of Aaron Rodgers and the Jets in stand-alone primetime games. And they're the Black Friday game, like we talked about earlier as well, Dolphins at Jets. I think those three games. Again, different chapters of the season. It'd be great if they got off to a hot start, week 1 to 4. That would be awesome.
But really, probably Black Friday, around then, is when we're really going to know. And damn, as much as I like the Dolphins, if the Jets aren't better than the Dolphins this year, that's a pretty disappointing outcome here for Aaron Rodgers with this team.
DALTON DEL DON: Assuming Aaron Rodgers is not washed, I think the Jets are right there among the favorites to win the AFC. They allowed the fewest yards per play last year, tied with the Eagles, and they were dealing with horrible quarterback play. I mean, that just really affects the defense in tough-to-measure ways.
And now you got Rodgers with Garrett Wilson in year two, some other weapons there, and Breece Hall. I mean, they're pretty loaded top to bottom. So yeah, assuming Rodgers is not washed, I think they're going to be contenders. And that Black Friday game could be fun.
But I don't know. I wouldn't just totally write off the Dolphins. I mean, Tua, Waddle, and Tyreek Hill are two of the best in NFL history combo. What is Tua YPA last year, 9.4 or something? So if he's healthy, and you got McDaniel there, I don't know. I think that they're absolutely right there in the handful of contenders too. Of course, it comes down to Tua's health.
MATT HARMON: From a Jets perspective, if they aren't better than the Dolphins this year, if they're the third team in their division-- even if their division is really good. There's no shame in not being as good as the Bills. The Bills are a great team. There are, obviously, concerns about the Dolphins, but there's really a high ceiling there as well. But still, you trade for Aaron Rodgers on this roster, they believe that they are a Super Bowl team. That's a pretty big disappointment.
One thing that I'm-- why I'm really confident in the Jets this year. I saw Dan Pizzuta from Sharp Football make this point. Typically, we think, oh, defense is really not sticky year to year, and it's very volatile. Typically, because these teams that are kind of out of nowhere great defenses, like the Jets went from not a great defense in 2021 to a great defense last year, it's usually boosted by big-time turnover rates. The Jets only had 16 turnovers last year, which was the third fewest in the league.
It was actually just they allowed 4.8 yards per play. Again, it's still tough to have that be sticky every single year. But if they can be that type of team and not just rely on turnovers, if their defense is even just as good or even slightly worse than it was last year, and Rodgers makes the offense better, we're cooking with gas there, basically. And I don't think it's necessarily as worrisome as typically these defensive regression-type situations are.