Friday, October 2, 2009

Week 4 Pick: Most Interesting Watch

My "Most Interesting" pick for Week 4 is really the runner-up for Marquee Game, which I think makes it an interesting watch on its own. I won't waste your time building it up, so I chose:

New York Jets @ New Orleans Saints

Over/Under: 45
Line: Saints by 7

My Thoughts
What makes this game so exciting is the fact that the NFL's highest ranked offense is squaring off against the league's best defense. Rex Ryan's blitzing madness facing off against the cerebral mastery of Drew Brees? Yes, please!

The Bills, amazingly, were able to slow down the Saints' high-flying attack last week, so it will be interesting to see how the Jets fare. Darrelle Revis is an excellent corner, and can expect to be left one-on-one with Marques Colston all day. That's a match-up Revis should win much of the time. However, Lito Sheppard is out, leaving the Jets a little thin in the secondary. More of a workload will be placed on Dwight Lowery, and this is a huge challenge for him. If Colston is neutralized, Devery Henderson, Lance Moore, Robert Meacham, and Jeremy Shockey just might be too much for the depleted Jets to handle.

The key here is how well New York can pressure Brees. He's a smart, mobile, and accurate quarterback, so Ryan will have be be very creative in his pressures to throw him off. Rex has the brains for it; Jets fans better hope he has the players to pull it off. Of course, the Saints proved that if you take away their great passing game, they can play the ground game very well. I don't see that being particularly effective against the very good Jets defense.

All this, and I haven't even talked about the much-improved New Orleans defense against Mark Sanchez and the New York offense. The Saints have a whole new defensive mentality under Gregg Williams, and have been playing much better than in previous years. Williams loves to blitz his players, and they will rely on this to get after the rookie Sanchez. However, supported by an effective run game, Sanchez has shown great poise and accuracy. I think the Jets offense is good enough to hang around in this game, and even to give them a real chance to win. I see this game being very close, but I think the Saints just prove to be too much. They'll win outright, but look for the Jets to cover the spread.

Saints 28
Jets 24

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