Short Week Creates Obstacles For Jets
It seems like everyone has an opinion this week on how long the Denver Broncos run-first/no throw/option offense can be successful in the NFL. From writers to analysts to Darrelle Revis, no one seems to believe in the Broncos one trick pony attack, even if it is led by Tim Tebow.
When asked earlier this week if Denver can sustain their success (3-1 since Tebow took over the reins, more rushing yards than any team in the league over that span), he responded bluntly. "No," Revis said. "No, not for a whole season. Because we know what they're doing, and we feel comfortable in our game plan."
Revis may be correct over time. The bigger question for his team: Can it work on Thursday night in Denver?
It won't be hard to recognize the talent discrepancy between New York and Denver on Thursday night. New York -- preseason Super Bowl contenders -- have the advantage at almost every position with the exception of pass rushing linebackers. Denver will counter by running a scheme -- the read option -- that no one else in the NFL runs on a consistent basis.
This match-up wouldn't cause much of a worry on a normal week. A full week of practice time would probably be more than enough for Rex Ryan -- author of "Coaching Football's 46 Defense" which includes a chapter on stopping the option -- to scheme and get his defensive lineman and linebackers disciplined enough to play their proper assignments. It was just a few years ago that Rex's Baltimore Ravens defense stopped the Dolphins Wildcat not once, but twice over the course of their magical season.
Unfortunately for Gang Green, the schedule makers didn't do them any favors. They played the late game on Sunday against New England, a deflating, hard fought loss. Now they must travel out to Denver on three days rest, with only a little over one full day of practice. That is a tough spot for a defense, albeit a good one, to prepare for such a unique attack.
New York is a significant favorite on Thursday night because they have more talent, but the Broncos have a fighters chance behind their running quarterback due to the nature of NFL scheduling.