Saturday, September 6, 2014

Matchup Mashup: Your Jets-Raiders primer


Week 1: Oakland Raiders (0-0) at New York Jets (0-0), 1 p.m.
Location: Metlife Stadium, East Rutherford, N.J.
Weather: Mid-70s at kickoff, no precipitation expected (accuweather)

The skinny: The Raiders come into town less than a week after naming rookie Derek Carr the starting quarterback. That has the Jets' elite defensive front frothing at the mouth, though Gang Green has major question marks in the secondary, namely at cornerback. Meanwhile, Jets second-year quarterback Geno Smith looks to pick up where he left off last season and build on the strong finish. He has an improved pass-catching corps at his disposal, along with a pretty stout backfield and offensive front.

What to watch for (links):
-How will safety-turned-cornerback Antonio Allen and backup Darrin Walls fare starting?
-Will the Louisville Slugger rookie safety Calvin Pryor burst on the scene?
-What will the Raiders' offense do up front to gain an advantage on the Jets' defensive line?
-Will Smith's supposed raised 'level of maturity' be on display as he leads the offense?
-With Chris Ivory and Chris Johnson leading the way, what kind of role will Bilal Powell assume?

Injury report: Dee Milliner is a no-go, but the Jets enter Week 1 with their collective health in tact. The Raiders are healthy, too.

Other tidbits from the week:
Receiver David Nelson shed a little light on the departed Dimitri Patterson; Antonio Allen is ready for his debut on the perimeter.

Our picks:
Nick: Jets 26, Raiders 13
Dan: Jets 17, Raiders 13
Sean: Raiders 19, Jets 13

Head-to-head recent history:
The Jets have won five of the last seven contests between the teams, including a 37-27 victory over Oakland last season. The Raiders, however, lead the overall series, 23-18-2.

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