The sorry state of New York football will be on full display Sunday afternoon at MetLife Stadium. The scary thought is it will get sorrier for one of the two teams.
The Jets hope it’s not them.
Things actually could get very ugly, or uglier rather for Adam Gase if the 1-7 Jets fall flat again when they face the 2-7 Giants. There were “Fire Gase” chants in Miami last Sunday, and planes flying around New York over the weekend with a banner that read, “Fire Adam Gase Now.”
Yes, it’s gotten to that point for Gase after the Jets were embarrassed last week by the previously winless Dolphins. The hate and vitriol only will get worse with a dud against the unimpressive Giants, who have their own issues.
“We need to win,” quarterback Sam Darnold said. “Our team knows it. But we are not treating this week any different than any other week.”
Darnold might not be, but other Jets are in what is a home game for them.
Safety Jamal Adams, who grew up a Giants fan because his father George played for them, said this game is significant for him.
“Hell yeah,” Adams said. “Hell yeah, it means something to me. Every game, but especially this one. We’re looking forward to this. It’s going to be a fun atmosphere.”
It’s about bragging rights because let’s be honest: no one wants to be on the losing end of this game.
The Jets’ defense is coming off a bad performance in Miami and now faces a team with more weapons.
Defensive coordinator Gregg Williams has to get his group to limit running back Saquon Barkley and try to let rookie quarterback Daniel Jones beat them. Jones has shown a good arm and the ability to run. But he has a penchant for turning the ball over. He has eight interceptions and eight lost fumbles.
Adams said he’s upset that his friend Evan Engram is out with a foot injury. Adams said the two were texting leading up to the game. He was looking forward to covering the Giants' tight end. But the friendship would have been put on hold for 60 minutes.
“I don’t talk to my opponent when I’m on the field,” Adams said. “I seen Saquon [last] weekend. He said we’re going to switch jerseys. That’s fine. We’ll definitely do that. But it will be after the game. It’s no friends.”
You probably have heard this before, but this could be the week the Jets get their offense going or that Le’Veon Bell goes off.
Neither happened last week against the Dolphins, who were allowing 34 points per game. The Jets only got in the end zone once — on their first series.
The Giants give up the fourth-most points (28.3) and have allowed games of at least 106 yards by six different receivers. They also yield 127.9 rushing yards per game.
Bell was slowed by knee and ankle issues this week but is expected to play. The Jets could get a boost offensively from what should be Chris Herndon’s first game of the season.
The versatile tight end, who was suspended for four games and missed another four with a hamstring injury, was a primary target for Darnold last year. The two appeared to have good chemistry and hope that continues now.
“Chris is a huge threat and we are looking forward to him being out there,” Darnold said.
If the Jets can establish the line of scrimmage — you know Leonard Williams wants to record his first sack of the season against his old team — limit their penalties and Darnold’s giveaways this could finally be their breakout game.
Those are big ifs, though.
“We just need to continue to eliminate some of the bad plays,” offensive coordinator Dowell Loggains said. “You can't beat yourself. Good football always beats bad football.”
Both of these teams know that all too well.