Jets vs. Cowboys: Preview, prediction, what to watch for

07:34 17.09.2023

In a thrilling Sunday matchup, the New York Giants will take on the Arizona Cardinals in Glendale, Arizona. The game will feature a marquee matchup between Cardinals running back James Conner and Giants middle linebacker Bobby Okereke. Although this won't be a one-on-one battle, Okereke is expected to be the centerpiece of the Giants' run defense.

Conner, while not considered a star running back, will play a crucial role in an offense that aims to diversify its options and not solely rely on quarterback Joshua Dobbs. In the previous game against Washington, Conner managed to rush for 62 yards and caught five passes for eight yards. Meanwhile, the Giants showcased their strong run defense against the Cowboys, with Okereke recording five tackles and forcing a fumble in his Giants debut.

Paul, the Giants' pick, believes that this game will be an opportunity for the Giants to prove themselves and showcase their true potential. After a disappointing opener, the Giants' defense must demonstrate their ability to contain the Cardinals' offense. It's crucial for the Giants to protect Daniel Jones, establish a cohesive offensive attack, and find the end zone for the first time this season. Paul predicts a victory for the Giants with a score of 24-16.

One factor to consider is the familiarity between the Giants and their former opponent, the Philadelphia Eagles. During his tenure as the Eagles' defensive coordinator, Jonathan Gannon's defensive strategies often troubled the Giants. Gannon, now the Cardinals' head coach, has brought his system to Arizona, which includes a heavy emphasis on quarters coverage. This defensive approach may entice the Giants to rely more on their running game.

The Giants encountered unexpected struggles on their offensive line, particularly from right guard Mark Glowinski, who was expected to be a reliable presence. In the opener against the Cowboys, Glowinski allowed three sacks and nine total pressures, according to Pro Football Focus. This poor performance aligned with a rough start for right tackle Evan Neal, who gave up a sack and eight pressures. The Giants must address these issues to protect Jones from the Cardinals' shifty outside linebacker, Dennis Gardeck, who recorded two sacks in the previous game.

The Giants' head coach, Brian Daboll, will face scrutiny as fans anxiously observe his reactions in both good and bad times. After a disappointing Week 1, Daboll's leadership and guidance are crucial for the team's morale and resilience. Daboll emphasized the importance of not letting one game define them and urged the team to stand up, dust themselves off, and give their best performance against the Cardinals. Special teams coordinator Thomas McGaughey praised Daboll for setting the right tone and ensuring that the team stays on the right track.

Drawing from his own experience, Giants running back Saquon Barkley emphasized the significance of sending the right message to rookies in the face of adversity. He recalled how Eli Manning, the former Giants quarterback, handled tough times with grace and determination. Barkley admired Manning's resilience, especially considering the pressure of being a quarterback in New York. He believes that maintaining composure and consistently giving their best effort is crucial for the Giants' success.

Meanwhile, the New York Jets will face the Dallas Cowboys in an equally exciting Sunday afternoon matchup in Dallas. One key matchup to watch is between Cowboys wide receiver CeeDee Lamb and Jets cornerback Sauce Gardner. Gardner, who had an impressive rookie year, experienced a less dominant performance in Week 1, allowing five catches for 62 yards, including some to Bills star Stefon Diggs. Gardner expressed disappointment in his performance and aims to bounce back against Lamb. Although the Jets' cornerbacks don't typically travel with specific receivers, Gardner is expected to face Lamb frequently during the game.

Jets head coach Robert Saleh believes that Gardner's performance against the Bills was still commendable, despite the tough matchup against Diggs. Saleh recognizes Gardner as a tough critic of his own performance and acknowledges his desire to achieve greatness. The challenge for Gardner is to remain focused, treat every play like a championship moment, and continue to improve.

Unfortunately for the Jets, the odds are not in their favor as they face a formidable Cowboys defense. Costello predicts a win for the Cowboys with a score of 20-3, citing the absence of Aaron Rodgers and the strength of the Cowboys' defense as determining factors in the game's outcome. The Jets' defense is expected to keep them in the game until the second half, but the Cowboys are likely to pull away with the victory.

Cowboys linebacker Micah Parsons, a rising star in the league, poses a significant threat to the Jets' offense. Parsons, who finished second in Defensive Player of the Year voting last season, has already made a strong impact this year with a sack against the Giants. His ability to absorb double teams has created opportunities for his teammates to apply pressure on the opposing quarterback. Considering the Jets' offensive line struggles and their league-worst pass block win rate, Parsons is likely to be a disruptive force against Jets quarterback Zach Wilson.

On the Jets' offensive side, running back Breece Hall made a triumphant return from a left ACL injury that prematurely ended his season last year. In his comeback game, Hall displayed his explosive speed with an 83-yard run, the second-longest in franchise history. The Jets plan to gradually increase Hall's workload each week, giving him more touches to help bolster their offense.

The Jets understand the importance of contributions from all areas of the team, especially on special teams. With Wilson back at quarterback, the offense cannot solely be relied upon to carry the team. Special teams coordinator Thomas McGaughey recognizes the significant impact special teams can have on the game's outcome. Kicker Greg Zuerlein's absence due to a groin injury will be a significant loss for the Cowboys, as he has proven to be a reliable kicker. Additionally, punter Thomas Morstead and punt return.

/ Sunday, September 17, 2023, 7:34 AM /

themes:  Philadelphia  Pennsylvania  Washington  New York (state)  Arizona

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