Last week was the worst week of the 2021 New York Jets’ season (so far) as their offense managed a paltry 161 total yards in Denver. This week doesn’t get any easier as they return to MetLife Stadium to face the Tennessee Titans. The visiting Titans are coming off a strong defensive effort against a shorthanded Indianapolis Colts team, 25-16. There are always questions to be answered when the Jets play, so let’s ask them in this preview against the Titans.
Will the Jets be able to slow down Derrick Henry?
One of the best-known colloquialisms from legendary sportscaster Dan Patrick is, “You can’t stop him. You can only hope to contain him.” That will be the Jets’ M.O. on defense against the Titans’ Derrick Henry in NFL Week 4. With wide receivers AJ Brown and Julio Jones both out this Sunday, you’ll see Henry get the ball A LOT. Not that he minds; two weeks ago in Seattle, he had 237 total yards and two touchdowns. Last week, Henry had a leaner 113 rushing yards, but the Colts held him out of the end zone. Historically, this is only the second time the Jets will face Henry. Back in 2018, the Jets held Henry to 10 carries for only 40 yards and a touchdown. Personally, I cannot wait for linebacker CJ Mosley to meet Henry in a goal line situation like the one below. (I heard he’s still wanted in Denver for murder.)
Can the Jets offense get off the ground?
The Jets’ struggles on offense are well documented. Maybe a little too documented. The job for offensive coordinator
Matt Mike LaFleur is to figure out how he can help quarterback Zach Wilson move the ball. The rookie OC and the rookie quarterback have been raked over the coals because in two weeks, the Jets have six points total. NFL Week 4 might be the week that the Jets’ offense breaks through against the Titans. Tennessee’s defense ranks below the Jets, allowing just over 359 yards to opponents this season. The Titans have also allowed 84 points, an average of 28 points per game. This is as good a week as any for the Jets to score some points. (By the way, Denzel Mims is allegedly on the active roster this week.) Which leads to the next question…
Can the offensive line protect Zach Wilson?
Another well-documented problem for the jets is the offensive line. They’re adept at run blocking, but against the pass, the line is a sieve. For historical reference of how bad the Jets have been, the last time they did not allow a sack was Week 14 of the 2018 season. The offensive line has allowed 15 sacks this season. Only Chicago has allowed just as many (albeit they surrendered nine last week to Cleveland). The Titans have seven sacks this season and linebacker Ola Adeniyi has 2.5 of those sacks. The biggest problem for the offensive line has been lack of communication and blown assignments. If the Jets can’t figure out how to prevent the Titans from getting a sack in NFL Week 4, Wilson is going to see a lot of the turf the rest of the season.
This is going to be a low-scoring defensive slog between the Jets and the Titans. The game may come down to whether the Jets can keep the Titans offense off the field. NFL Week 4 between the two teams will be won in the trenches. The Titans clearly have the better men in the trenches on both sides of the ball. The Jets will give the Titans a game, but they’ll drop to 0-4. Titans 24, Jets 16.