The first reaction to the New York Jets 2020 schedule brings one strong thought: this isn’t as brutal as everybody once thought.
Is that what you’re going to do, give us an early win-loss prediction in May? Realy? There’s no film to break down or podcasts to hop on? You have nothing better to do with your time?
Apparently the answer is, “Yes,” as is the case every offseason when the NFL schedule is officially released. And it’s OK, I suppose. Let everybody eat that football cake.
Just understand one critical thing while stuffing your face: nobody knows a damn thing.
At this time last year, the Cleveland Browns were the darlings of the league. Baker Mayfield and Odell Beckham Jr. were ready to take the league by storm. It was, without a doubt, another example of a team winning the offseason only to follow it up with a bitter regular-season disappointment.
It’s no different for the New York Jets. At this point a year ago, the Buffalo Bills weren’t being treated as a playoff team. The Browns (Week 2) were considered a juggernaut. The Oakland Raiders were still a laughingstock. And the Baltimore Ravens were just a solid team.
By the end of 17 weeks, the Bills were playoff-caliber, the Browns were… well, still the Browns (in the Super Bowl era), the Raiders were a tough out and the Ravens put together the greatest zone-read scheme in the history of the league.
Nobody knows anything. It’s why the Jets No. 2 strength-of-schedule ranking (.533, trailing only the New England Patriots, based on last year’s win-loss records) means very little.
A year ago, the Oakland Raiders entered 2019 with the hardest schedule based on the previous season’s win-loss record. By the time it was all said and done, their strength-of-schedule finished somewhere in the bottom third of the league.
So much depends on injuries and early-season momentum, and in the Jets case, this slate isn’t as challenging as initially thought.
— Robby Sabo (@RobbySabo) May 7, 2020