Biggest takeaways from Jets 2023 schedule release

Jets free agent announcement
Nick Faria – AMNY

If the New York Jets want to end their 12-year playoff drought this season, they’ll have to do so against one of the hardest schedules in football. 

New York knew that they would have the sixth-toughest schedule going into the season due to having the league schedules out future opponents. Dates with the NFC East and AFC West, along with their usual division foes means that Gang Green will have their work cut out for them this season. 

Of course, having Aaron Rodgers as your quarterback will help turn the tide in many of those difficult contests. 

That being said, with the Jets’ schedule finally released, there’s plenty to take away from what is one of the tougher schedules in football. 

1. The Aaron Rodgers prime-time effect

Aaron Rodgers has improved the Jets' Super Bowl odds
New York Jets’ quarterback Aaron Rodgers poses with a jersey after a news conference at the NFL football team’s training facility in Florham Park, N.J., Wednesday, April 26, 2023. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)AP Photos

New York hasn’t seen a Sunday Night Football game since 2011. With Aaron Rodgers at quarterback though, the team is scheduled to not just have two of them, but six prime-time games altogether. The Jets went a very competitive 7-10 last season without an above-average starter and now get one of the best modern quarterbacks in history. They may not win every prime-time game, but the Jets are surely going to be a lot better with the eyes of the world watching them. 

2. September Gauntlet

In five of the first seven games, the Jets will face a team that made the playoffs. Six of them finished over .500 and the final team has a Hall-of-Fame head coach now at the helm with Sean Payton in Denver. In short, the month of September, and even the early portion of the season is an absolute gauntlet for the team. If New York can come away at or hovering around .500, they should be in great shape because of the second half of the season.

3. End-of-season ease?

Speaking of the second half of the season, the Jets play five last-place finishers in the final nine weeks. Houston, Atlanta, Las Vegas, and Washington could all be better, but New York is in a prime position to really play well down the stretch if they can start semi-solid. Of course, this was the same thing we were saying last year and Gang Green ended up losing their final six games and didn’t score a touchdown in the final three. 

4. Easy travel schedule

As part of facing off against the AFC West, the Jets have to travel pretty far for some of their road games this year. Luckily, the way the schedule dictates, it shouldn’t be too much of a factor for them. Unlike their counterparts at MetLife, the Jets don’t have to travel for seven games in their first 11 contests. Also, they only have one two-week window they are on the road consecutively. Having MetLife be a consistent face to see throughout the year will play nicely later in the year. 

5. Division games will determine everything

This may seem like a throwaway but it really isn’t. The Philadelphia Eagles went 4-2 in their division last year and still managed to get to the Super Bowl. If New York can play above .500 in their six games against the AFC East, not only will the team be in great shape for the playoffs, but they could very well be in a position to win the AFC East for the first time since 2002. The rest of the division is expected to have a harder schedule because of the way the placement is usually scheduled so this is a great year for the Jets to take advantage. 

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