The new-look Jets will open this season on Sunday in a matchup against the vaunted Baltimore Ravens at MetLife Stadium, and they’re looking to improve on their lackluster 4–13 season last year. Gang Green has dealt with significant injury troubles this offseason, and brought on many new young players — so fans will be eager to see how the team performs against one of the most explosive offenses in the NFL.
New York Jets (0–0) vs. Baltimore Ravens (0–0)
- Location: MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, NJ
- Time: Sunday, 1 p.m. ET
- Channel: CBS
- Spread: BAL -7.5
- Over/Under: 44.5 points
- Moneyline odds: BAL -330, NYG +265
The Ravens, led by quarterback Lamar Jackson, are favored to win the matchup against the Jets, who will see Joe Flacco under center in a revenge game against his former team, where he spent the first 11 years of his career. That comes because starter Zach Wilson continues to rehab from a torn meniscus and bone bruise. The Jets added some significant pieces, including 3 first round picks (cornerback Sauce Gardner, wide receiver Garrett Wilson, and defensive end Jermaine Johnson) along with running back Breece Hall in the second round. That gives them some new tools to work with heading into their opening matchup.
Joe Flacco vs. the Ravens
Obviously, Joe Flacco’s presence as the starter against his former team will be something fans can look out for — as he was a staple on the Baltimore football scene for over a decade, and led them to a Super Bowl victory in 2013, and was named MVP of that game. Flacco came to the Jets in the offseason of 2020, before leaving for the Eagles one year later. He was then traded back to New York during the 2021 season, and re-signed this offseason. He will be facing his former team, and will surely look to get some retribution and prove that he still has a place in the NFL at 37-years-old.
The youngsters have arrived
The Jets are reinvigorated with new talent after a draft that saw them with 4 picks in the first 2 rounds, and this will be the first chance for them to prove themselves in regular season action. Sauce Gardner perhaps comes into the game with the most hype of any rookie on the team, and he will look to cover his assignments against Jackson’s strong arms, and an elaborate offense that Baltmiore has built around their passer. Wilson, meanwhile, will need to step up if he wants to prove himself as a true second option at wide receiver along with Elijah Moore, who figures to be the top target for Gang Green. Hall, who is taking over the lead running back slot, had a less-than-stellar preseason, but he will get a chance to show that he can be the featured rusher that Gang Green has been missing for the last several years.
Along with Zach Wilson’s injury, the team suffered a devastating loss when starting left tackle Mekhi Becton suffered a leg injury that will keep him out for the entire season. The team brought on veteran former Pro-Bowler Duane Brown to replace Becton, who comes to New York after spending last season with the Seattle Seahawks — but it remains to be seen whether the offensive line will hold up against opposing defenses. The Jets allowed the fourth-most sacks last season at 53, so it is critical that they keep their quarterbacks upright if they want to have any chance of competing against elite teams.
- Zach Wilson — QB, New York: torn meniscus, bone bruise (Out)
- Mekhi Becton — LT, New York: Avulsion fracture (Out)
- Duane Brown — LT, New York: Shoulder (Questionable)
- David Ojabo — LB, Baltimore: Achilles (Out)
- J.K. Dobbins — RB, Baltimore: Knee (Questionable)
Ravens 34, Jets 17
The Ravens head into the game as heavy favorites, and it will take a whole-team effort from the Jets to overcome the potent offense of the Ravens. Without Wilson, Joe Flacco remains the biggest question mark heading into the game, as he has not played much over the past two seasons. With a number of young players at critical positions just getting acclimated to the speed of the NFL, and the Ravens boasting solid continuity from last year, the Jets have a big uphill battle ahead of them. Baltimore should be considered likely to emerge victorious on Sunday.