In what was thought to be yet another rebuilding year for the New York Jets and Giants. Both teams have started out the season much above expectations as the Jets are 4-2 and the Giants are 5-1. So the question lies, is New York football back?
We will look at the Jets first who have had a wild ride to 4-2. The first major storyline had come during the preseason, when their sophomore quarterback, Zach Wilson, got hurt. This led to him being ruled out for a few weeks and veteran quarterback Joe Flacco taking the helm. They showed some promise against the Baltimore Ravens but were never really in contention to win the game. This start made many believe it would be more of the same for the Jets. However, in week two the Jets would pull off a late comeback against the Cleveland Browns and barely snag a win. This was big for the team but questions were still being thrown around as they were down until the final seconds. Week three would see them take a lackluster loss to the Cincinnati Bengals and hope plummeted. Week four would bring hope to the team as Zach Wilson returned from injury and the Jets pulled off a hard-fought win against the Pittsburgh Steelers. Week five against the Dolphins would have to be a win for them, as it was an indivision game against a Dolphins team without their starting quarterback. This would prove to be the Jets most dominant win as they controlled the entire game and got a massive 40-17 win. Week six was the week that put the league on notice about the New York Jets. The Jets would hold Aaron Rodgers and the Packers to only 10 points and snag a decisive 27-10 win. The Jets success so far can be brought down to their fantastic draft this season, with rookie Reciever Garrett Wilson, and rookie cornerback Sauce Gardner both making immediate impacts on the team. Head Coach Robert Saleh has also done an excellent job at putting this team where it is as of now.
The New York Giants arguably have had a more impressive start to the season at 5-1 and I must say, it’s been fun to watch. The Giants had new hope coming into the season that new head coach Brain Daboll would bring new life to the team, and star running back Saquon Barkley would hopefully return to form after being mired with injuries for the past couple of years. Week One would not be easy against the Tennessee Titans as they would be down-ending the first half. Saquon Barkley would come to life in the second half and after coming all the way back, they would pull off a gutsy two-point conversion to take the lead the Titans then on an attempted game-winning drive, would miss a game-winning field goal and the Giants would walk out of week one 1-0. Week two would be a defensive game against the Panthers, with the Giants edging out a win. Week three would be their first and only hiccup of the season thus far with the Dallas Cowboys winning a closely contested contest after a Daniel Jones interception to close the game. Week four would see the Giants defense step up again only allowing the Bears to 12 points and forcing many mistakes leading to yet another win. The Giants biggest challenge yet would be against Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers in London. The Packers would lead the majority of the game and were up 20-13 heading into the fourth. The Giants wouldn’t back down and were able to tie the game up early in the fourth. The Giants defense would step up and allow Saquon Barkley to take over eventually rushing in for the lead with six minutes left in the game. The Giants would allow Rodgers to drive downfield but made a massive goalline stand and would come out of London with a massive win for the team. Week six would be another big game against the Baltimore Ravens but the Giants even with being down again heading into the fourth would not back down. After forcing Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson into multiple late mistakes they would get a game-sealing fumble and end up 5-1 heading out of week six.
Many fans in the NFL wonder how this has all happened, and I think the answer is quite clear. Good coaching, drafting, and the fact both teams don’t have any quit. Even with an on-paper less talented roster both teams have pushed through and won when it’s mattered most. Even though it is still early, maybe the Jets and Giants can follow their fellow New York team the Buffalo Bills, in making the playoffs this year.