The 1-4 New York Jets will travel to University of Phoenix Stadium to take on the 2-3 Arizona Cardinals on the Week 6 edition of Monday Night Football. ESPN reports the Jets will be looking to put an end to their three-game losing streak, while the Cardinals will be seeking back-to-back wins for the first time during the 2016 NFL Season.
— New York Jets (@nyjets) October 15, 2016
New York has lost its last three games by an average of 16.3 points per game as quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick has thrown nine interceptions in those three games. The defense, which was expected to be a strength for the Jets in 2016, is second-to-last in the NFL in passing yards allowed per game at 303 and the unit is allowing 27.2 points per contest. That’s not exactly a recipe for success.
The Cardinals have also had a disappointing start to the 2016 NFL Season as they lost three of their first four games after reaching the NFC Championship Game last season. Backup quarterback Drew Stanton led Arizona to a massive victory over the San Francisco 49ers on Thursday Night Football that helped to save the season for the time being.
Starting quarterback Carson Palmer is now out of the concussion protocol and will be set to face the Jets on Monday night. Palmer’s been okay this season, but he has thrown five interceptions and taken 12 sacks in only four games. If Arizona is going to return to the playoffs in 2016, the team’s going to have to get better performances from Palmer and his offensive line.
Carson Palmer cleared from concussion protocol https://t.co/E9PSXSPjgd
— ProFootballTalk (@ProFootballTalk) October 11, 2016
With both these teams needing a win this week, let’s get to some bold predictions.
5. Carson Palmer Will Throw For 350 Yards And 3 Touchdowns
The Jets’ defense has struggled mightily against the pass this season and the Cardinals’ offense is built around the vertical passing game. With John Brown and Michael Floyd going deep, and Larry Fitzgerald working the middle, the Jets are going to have a tough time keeping the Cardinals’ passing game in check.
4. Matt Forte Will Have Over 20 Carries
During the Jets’ three-game losing streak, Forte has only carried the ball 15, 14 and 12 times. Even though Jets offensive coordinator Chan Gailey likes to get the ball down the field with the passing game, New York will have zero chance of beating Arizona on the road if Forte gets less than 20 carries. The Jets must possess the ball and keep the Cardinals’ offense off the field.
3. Cardinals Defense Will Force 5 Turnovers
Turnovers have been a huge problem for the New York Jets this season and the Cardinals should be ready to take full advantage. With Brandon Marshall being Fitzpatrick’s go-to receiver, the Cardinals will likely have Patrick Peterson shadow him all night which will give one of the best corners in the league plenty of opportunities for interceptions.
2. Geno Smith Will Make An Appearance
If the Jets get down early, we could see an appearance from backup quarterback Geno Smith. It would be near impossible for New York to rebound from a 1-5 start and still make the playoffs so head coach Todd Bowles will be treating this as a must-win game. If Fitzpatrick struggles, don’t be surprised if Smith gets a shot.
1. Cardinals Win By Double-Digits
Without Eric Decker, and with the struggles on defense, the Jets might have a long season ahead of them after entering the year with playoff aspirations. The Arizona Cardinals will have had 11 days of rest before playing this game on Monday night which should have them fresh and ready to take down the New York Jets, 31-20.
[Featured Image by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images]