Jets open against Bucs; Giants and Eli face Peyton and Broncos in Week 2
The NFL sure has a flair for the dramatic.
The Jets will play their 2013 regular- season opener against Tampa Bay -- and possibly Darrelle Revis -- at MetLife Stadium, while the Manning brothers, Eli and Peyton, square off in the Giants' home opener in Week 2 against the Broncos.
The Jets and Bucs have had ongoing talks about trading the former All-Pro cornerback to Tampa Bay in exchange for the Bucs' 13th overall pick, and more, in next week's NFL draft. Should a deal be struck, all eyes will be fixed on Revis' return to MetLife Stadium.
Rex Ryan, who spoke to reporters on a conference call Thursday night, steered clear of the Revis topic and said only that he was happy to be opening up at home.
The Jets have just two prime-time games on their schedule (Week 2 vs. New England on a Thursday night and Week 5 at Atlanta) -- a clear indication that the NFL sees the Jets in a rebuilding mode. "Certainly last year, with the [6-10] record we had, it's not surprising that we would only have two," Ryan said.
As for their Thursday night game against the Patriots, their first meeting since the infamous "butt fumble" in a lopsided 49-19 loss, Ryan said: "I hope we play a heck of a lot better on a short week. I will say, we will play better. It's hard to play worse."
The highlight of the Giants' schedule will be the "The Manning Bowl.'' Peyton, who led the Broncos to the AFC West Division title last season, has won both regular-season meetings (2006, 2010) against Eli's Giants, back when he was a Colt.
Unlike the Jets, the Giants -- who finished 9-7 and failed to make the playoffs a year after winning Super Bowl XLVI -- have five prime-time games in 2013. They'll also play three of their first four games and three of their final five contests on the road.
Coach Tom Coughlin said: "When I looked at the schedule, the first word that came to mind is 'challenge.' "