After the release of the NFL schedule, fans can now try to predict the New York Jets 2017 season.
For the first time since 2009, the New York Jets will open their season on the road. The Jets first game will be against their division rivals the Buffalo Bills. It will be the first time New York opens the season against Buffalo since 2012.
Most notably on the schedule is the Jets lack of primetime games. The Jets get one game under the lights, a Thursday night battle against the Bills on November 2nd.
The lack of primetime games comes for a good reason. Many experts and fans don’t expect the Jets to perform at a high level this season and they don’t have many superstars that NFL fans want to see.
The Jets bye-week is week 11, which is a good point for the team. By that time they’ll have played enough games to evaluate different quarterbacks and should know who their starter will be for the rest of the season.
Lastly, besides a two game stretch where New York plays Cleveland and Jacksonville in back-to-back weeks, there aren’t many games that fans should be confident New York can win.
A Closer Look at the New York Jets 2017 Schedule
Best Case Scenario
Although some Jets fans believe the best course of action is to get a top draft pick next season, for the sake of the schedule being released the best case scenario includes the Jets ceiling in 2017.
There is a scenario in which the Jets could be 4-1 heading into their week five matchup against the Patriots.
The Jets open their season on the road against the Bills, a game they are unlikely to win but could. If Josh McCown, or whoever is under center, has a good game and the Jets are able to hold the Bills to under 20 points, the Jets could come away with a victory. Buffalo’s roster is average and they have a new head coach in Sean McDermott.
The Jets will then go to Oakland to lose to the Raiders. There is no way New York comes away victorious in that one.
The following week, Gang Green plays their home opener against the Dolphins. This is another divisional game that can go either way, but for the sake of the best case scenario, the Jets are able to narrowly beat the Dolphins to move to 2-1.
The Jets then enter the easiest stretch of their schedule. They play the Jaguars at home and the Browns on the road. The Jaguars and the Browns are two teams that, like the Jets, seriously struggled in 2016. Both teams have upgraded their rosters in the offseason and the Browns have a plethora of picks in this year’s draft. Still, these are two games the Jets can win.
In this scenario, the Jets enter their week six game against the Patriots 4-1. Not bad for a team that only won five games last season.
Next up are the Patriots at home, at Dolphins and then home against the Falcons and Bills, respectively. Continuing the best case scenario, the Jets could conceivably win one of those four games and head into week ten with a 5-4 record.
Before the bye-week, the Jets go on the road to play the Buccaneers. Tampa Bay’s high powered offense will be too much for the Jets defense. As a result, New York will head into its bye week 5-5.
Coming out of said bye week, the Jets will play the Panthers and the Chiefs at home. Although the Jets will lose to the Chiefs, they do have the ability to beat the Panthers. While the Jets will have a hard time slowing down the Panthers offense, the Jets could put up points against their mediocre defense and get to 6-6.
The Jets last four games are their most difficult stretch of the season. They play at Denver, at New Orleans, home against the Los Angeles Chargers and closing out the season in Foxborough against the Pats.
Even in a best case scenario, the Jets are only able to beat the lowly Chargers at home.
This scenario would give the Jets a 7-9 record to end the season. Although unlikely, seven wins would be a successful season for New York and probably enough to keep Todd Bowles on for another season. However, a team whose ceiling is seven games obviously doesn’t have a very talented roster.
Worst Case Scenario
This is the Jets floor. This is the scenario where the Jets 2017 draft picks don’t contribute immediately and their quarterback play is forgetful. This is also the more likely of the two scenarios.
Whereas the best case scenario is the Jets starting 4-1, they could easily start 1-4. A win over Buffalo in week one will not be easy and there is no way they are beating the Raiders in Oakland. Then Jarvis Landry and the Dolphins come to New York in a game where the Jets could give up 400 yards passing and have an empty stadium by halftime.
The Jets then take on the Jaguars at home and the Browns on the road. They will more than likely win one of those two games. If not, this Jets team could be a lock for the number one pick.
The Jets then will lose at home to the Patriots and on the road against the Dolphins. The following week, the defending NFC Champion Falcons come to town and hand a faltering Jets team another L to drop them to 1-7.
On a short week, at home against a mediocre team, New York could snag a victory against Buffalo. Their roster isn’t that talented and a new head coach brings a lot of uncertainty.
A loss against the Buccaneers in week 10 means the Jets will enter their bye-week 2-8. At this point they will start to give playing time to any quarterback on the roster, if they haven’t already.
Coming out of the bye week, the Jets could lose four straight before beating the Chargers in week 16. The Panthers underperformed in 2016 and could easily rebound next season, making that a difficult matchup for the Jets.
They then face two of the toughest defenses in the AFC, the Chiefs and the Broncos, and drop both of those games. A week 15 trip to the SuperDome will result in another loss, dropping the Jets to 2-12.
A meaningless home victory over the Chargers in week 16 will give the Jets their final win in a rebuilding season and a loss to the Patriots in week 17 will most likely lock up the number one pick in the 2018 draft.
What does this mean for New York?
While a 3-13 season means a difficult couple of months for Jets fans, the number one pick will help them build for the future. This isn’t a team that is close to a championship so looking ahead is what is best.