As ever the opening round of matches in the NFL concludes with a Monday Night Football double header with the first half of the action coming from Ford Field as the Detroit Lions host the New York Jets.
The Lions will be looking to make a push for the playoffs under a new head coach while a rookie quarterback has the potential to excite at the Jets so it will be interesting to see which story writes its first chapter here.
If you had to find a team who have underperformed for a long time given their potential you could easily make a case for that to be the Detroit Lions. When you think of the tools they have had over the last 10 years it beggars belief almost that they have only had three playoff appearances in that time.
The tools all look to be in place for another successful season for the Lions especially if they can start to establish their run game. A real standout performance in this match would appeal too as the anticipation around the new coach taking over and everything that goes with it will be justified. I’m expecting both sides of the ball to be strong for Detroit.
New York Jets
Another new era begins for the New York Jets in this match with third pick in the draft Sam Darnold being given the nod as the starting quarterback. The big questions are whether he can handle the Monday Night Football spotlight so soon in his career and also whether the experienced playmakers that are around him can stand up and help out their rookie quarterback.
The other question will revolve around whether the defence can stand up and be counted. I would suggest the mentality of the Jets side will be interesting to witness too. This is a franchise who are suddenly used to losing matches and while there is a clean slate with a new quarterback a bad start or an indifferent early drive could soon have those memories coming back.
I think we might be in for a low scoring match here. I say that for a couple of reasons. While Detroit Lions have a new head coach who may take some time for his style to come out onto the field, Matt Patricia knows all about stopping the Jets offense as he has been doing that twice a season for a while.
You would think the Jets will take some of the pressure off their rookie quarterback by running the ball while I’m expecting the Lions to want to get their own new running game into play which may well see the clock run down quickly and keep the scoring below 45pts.
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