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Three Predictions For The Jets’ Second Half

New York took a 3-3 record into their bye week after a huge win against the undefeated Philadelphia Eagles in Week Six. As they are set to face off against the Giants this week, here are three predictions for the rest of the season:

Zach Wilson Will Remain The Starter

Throughout his Jets career, the former second-overall pick has been underwhelming, to say the least. Although, in a season where Wilson was supposed to take a back seat, Aaron Rodgers’ Achilles injury forced him back into the starting role.

Wilson looked to be much of the same at the start of this year after uninspiring performances against the Cowboys and Patriots. However, New York decided to open up the playbook a little more going into the Sunday night game against Kansas City. This resulted in a noticeable change in Zach Wilson’s play. Since then, Wilson has been able to sustain some type of productivity at the quarterback position, which has factored into the Jets winning back-to-back games against the Broncos and Eagles before entering their bye week.

Don’t get me wrong, Zach still has a long way to go before he can call himself a starting-caliber quarterback. However, for a guy who was probably one more ineffective first-half away from getting benched, he did just enough to extend his shelf life as the Jets’ starter.

Also, let’s not forget that it wasn’t too long ago that we were throwing names around such as Carson Wentz, Matt Ryan, and Jamies Winston as possible replacements for the struggling third-year quarterback. Well, those talks have been put to bed for now and Zach deserves some credit for playing toward his strengths and taking advantage of the team's decision to move on from the simplified offense.

If this coaching staff was willing to die on the sword during the bad, then you better believe that they are going to embrace the good in Zach Wilson. As long as Zach shows that he can manage the game and not lose it all by himself, then I don't see him going anywhere.

Jets Will Finish With A Top Ten Defense

New York currently owns the 23rd-ranked defense in the league heading into Week Eight. Last year they finished as the fourth-best defense in terms of yards, as well as points against. The team looking so unprepared at the beginning of games is a factor as to why they are ranked as low as they are so far this season.

With that being said, the Jets still have shown at times that they're capable of shutting down and/or limiting any offense in the league.

New York managed to hold the Chiefs and Eagles, the two teams that met in last year's Super Bowl, to a combined three points in the second half of both games. As consistently bad as this defense has been to start, they’ve also proved to be constant in making the necessary adjustments that allow them to stay competitive. After facing teams like the Bills, Cowboys, Chiefs, and Eagles so far, New York is only allowing 19.8 points per game (13th overall) as opposed to the 18.6 that they’ve allowed the season prior.

With the schedule looking more manageable for the rest of the year, this defense has an opportunity to correct these issues and get back to being in the top half of defenses rather than the bottom. Seeing what this defense was last season and what they’ve shown at times this year, I strongly believe that they will bounce back and graduate from not just finding their groove in the second half of games, but for the majority of the second half of the season as well.

Despite Losing Rodgers, The Jets Will Have A Playoff Push

This last prediction heavily depends on the outcome of the two that come before it. Zach needs to show some progression as the season continues, and the defense needs to correct their early game issues. If both of these wheels don’t fall off at some point this season, then I believe that it’s not out of the realm of possibility that the Jets can’t at least be in the playoff conversation. I’m usually one to temper my expectations so this prediction is a little out-of-pocket for me, but I decided to have a little fun with this last one.

New York managed to come away with a 3-3 record after their first six games of the season despite losing their hall-of-fame quarterback four plays in. If you told me that the Jets would have three wins at the bye WITH Aaron Rodgers I would've said that they would be in a good spot considering the teams that they had to face.

Needless to say, New York did not lose the season just yet and are exceeding expectations so far, much like they did last year after starting with a 7-4 record. With 11 games left to play, time will tell if this team's playoff hopes can become more of a reality, but I'm willing to bet that they will be in the fight.

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