Sunday, September 7, 2014

Week 1 picks: Raiders at Jets


Publisher Nick St. Denis, associate editor Dan Begnoche and senior writer Sean Donovan pick the New York Jets' AFC bout with the Oakland Raiders.

Nick's take
The Jets' defensive front--namely Sheldon Richarson, Muhammad Wilkerson and Damon Harrison--is raring to go with a rookie quarterback in Derek Carr coming to down to make his first NFL start. Rex Ryan's group will undoubtedly wreak havoc in the Raiders' offensive backfield, but can a questionable cornerback corps hold up? On the other side of the ball, Geno Smith should attack an underwhelming Raiders secondary, though look for a heavy dose of the versatile Chris-Chris backfield.
Prediction: Jets 26, Raiders 13

Sean's take
It's always fun to put down the Raiders because they're the Raiders, but this year they field a decent roster full of promising young players and solid veteran stopgaps. Their performance in the opener hinges however on the resilience of Carr in a hostile environment against a game-planner like Ryan, who's notorious for being particularly rough on inexperienced signal callers. Oakland's defense harries Smith enough to prevent the Jets' offense from getting its wheels off the ground, and Carr's solid performance in the circumstances gives the Raiders the upset win.
Prediction: Raiders 19, Jets 13

Nick's take
Things have flip-flopped this season for the New York Jets, as the team goes into the season with a pretty stable offense and a secondary that is anything but. Lucky for them, they'll face a rookie quarterback in Carr, who will likely face a bunch of heat from Gang Green's explosive front seven. If the sophomore quarterback Smith can keep things rolling with minimal mistakes against the Raiders' solid defense, the Jets should be able to stifle Oakland's offense and nab a win in their home opener.
Prediction: Jets 17, Raiders 13

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