BILLS AT JETS, Metlife Stadium, 1 p.m.
LINE: Jets by 2 1/2; O/U 40 1/2
TV: Ch. 2 (Kevin Harlan, Rich Gannon)
RADIO: WEPN-1050 AM (Bob Wischusen, Marty Lyons); Sirius 119; XM 230.
FORECAST: Mostly sunny, high of 73.
Jets cornerback Trumaine Johnson (hamstring) is expected to play after missing nearly a month. Buffalo could go right at him – again. Johnson returned against the Bills after missing five weeks with a quad injury last year, and they threw at him on the very first play for a 47-yard completion. Bills returner Andre Roberts, a Pro Bowler with the Jets last year, won’t play because of a quad issue. Micah Hyde and Cole Beasley could return punts and rookie Devin Singletary kicks for Buffalo The Jets have their own special teams concerns with first-time kicker (Kaare Vedvik), punt returner (Braxton Berrios) and kick returner (Trenton Cannon). Bills new tight end Tyler Kroft (foot) is doubtful. Veteran Lee Smith is next man up.
QB Josh Allen vs. Jets secondary: Cornerback is the Jets’ weakest position. Johnson is coming back from injury and No. 2 Darryl Roberts has only started 16 games in three seasons – because of injuries to a starter. Allen could throw early and often to his receiving corps of John Brown, Zay Jones and Beasley.
Jets O-Line vs. Bills D-Line: The Jets have made major improvements on their offensive line, but this will be the first time their starting front five plays together in a game. Sam Darnold has only worked a couple of weeks with new center Ryan Kalil. But Kalil and the rest of the line has a lot of experience so that should help.
LB Tremaine Edmunds vs. RB Le’Veon Bell: The second-year linebacker probably watched some old Steelers film to see what he will be facing. Patient and elusive, Bell likes to use his eyes to set up the linebacker, and then quickly change direction. He can also run over players if he’s not wrapped up.
Adam Gase, in his first season as Jets coach, said it’s about the players, not him as they kick off a new year: “I like the way that this group has worked since we started. I think our coaching staff is excited for these guys because I think they have a lot to prove. They have a lot of things that things haven't gone their way all the time – the guys that have been here and I think they're excited to kind of wipe the slate clean, start over and work to get to 1-0.”
Players will be jacked and emotions high for both sides since it’s Week 1, but there should be a extra desire for Bell, Gase and Darnold. Bell wants to prove he’s still on top of his game after taking a year off. All the talk about Gase’s offense, he'll want it humming in his first game. And Darnold wants to show how much he’s grown and developed in front of what should be a loud and raucous crowd.