DENVER — The Jets went toe-to-toe with the best team in the AFC West last week. Now, they need to step on one of the worst.
The 1-3 Jets come here with their season hanging in the balance.
A loss to a 1-3 Broncos team would be their fourth straight defeat and make the playoffs feel like an impossibility.
A win here, and the Jets still can dream about making a push for the postseason.
They had a rare encouraging loss last week to the Chiefs, falling 23-20 but getting the best game from quarterback Zach Wilson in his career and playing well on both sides of the ball after the first quarter.
Now, they face a Broncos team that has the worst defense in the league and just notched their first win of the season last week.
This is a big game for the Jets, no matter what coach Robert Saleh says.
“I feel like every week is a big week,” Saleh said. “It’s this sense of urgency to win in this league and to do your best, and all that stuff is always at peak levels every week. You never want to make one bigger than the other, because that’s where you get inconsistency in play, but this is no different.
“We’re traveling to a Denver team that just came off of a big win. They are feeling really good about themselves, and they are probably looking at their schedule and thinking, ‘Hey, we got a chance to get right’. So we’ve got to put our best foot forward and get ready to try to win a football game.”
A key for the Jets will be starting off quickly. That is an area they have struggled in this season. They have been outscored 30-0 in the first quarter — including giving up 17 points to the Chiefs last week.
On offense, the Jets have gone 10 games without scoring a first-quarter touchdown.
“We need to come out fast as well,” Wilson said. “[The defense is] easing into what we are doing on offense, so we need to be able to come out right from the beginning Screw the third downs, let’s get some first downs on first down and second down, let’s start fast and get some big plays from the beginning.”