Connect with us

Bussiness

New York Jets 2024 schedule: Aaron Rodgers and company get brutal test in first 11 weeks

Published

on

The Athletic has live coverage of the latest news on the 2024 NFL schedule release.

The NFL banked on an Aaron Rodgers-filled season when it scheduled the New York Jets for numerous prime-time games last season. It backfired when Rodgers suffered a torn Achilles in Week 1 and the Jets were forced to revert back to Zach Wilson at quarterback.

The league decided to try to give it another try in 2024. Wednesday, the NFL announced a Jets schedule with six prime-time games in the first 11 weeks, including Week 1 at the 49ers. The Jets also will travel to London in Week 5 to face the Vikings for a nationally televised Sunday morning game.

If the Jets can get through that gauntlet, full of national attention and short on rest, they will cement themselves as contenders.

Or, things could go south and spiral. The bye week respite does not arrive until Week 12. At least the Jets have veteran Tyrod Taylor this time to back up Rodgers.

Jets 2024 schedule

WEEK DATE OPPONENT TIME (ET)

1

Sept. 9

8:15 p.m.

2

Sept. 15

1 p.m.

3

Sept. 19

8:15 p.m.

4

Sept. 29

1 p.m.

5

Oct. 6

9:30 a.m.

6

Oct. 14

8:15 p.m.

7

Oct. 20

8:20 p.m.

8

Oct. 27

1 p.m.

9

Oct. 31

8:15 p.m.

10

Nov. 10

4:25 p.m.

11

Nov. 17

8:20 p.m.

12

BYE

13

Dec. 1

1 p.m.

14

Dec. 8

1 p.m.

15

Dec. 15

1 p.m.

16

Dec. 22

1 p.m.

17

Dec. 29

1 p.m.

18

TBD

TBD

Week 1 keys to victory

Keep Rodgers on his feet: This is obvious and must be stated anyway. Rodgers was injured last year on a failed cut block from left tackle Duane Brown. Leonard Floyd — now with the 49ers — sacked him and wrecked the Jets’ season. The Jets put a lot into fixing the offensive line this offseason, adding Tyron Smith, John Simpson, Morgan Moses and first-round pick Olu Fashanu, and they need to step up against an elite defensive front.

Defend an explosive offense: The 49ers, who lost February’s Super Bowl to the Chiefs 25-22 in overtime, are loaded at offense. They bring back Brock Purdy at quarterback, along with elite weapons like Deebo Samuel, Christian McCaffrey, Brandon Aiyuk and George Kittle, and they made other offseason additions. This will be a great early test for Sauce Gardner, C.J. Mosley, Quinnen Williams and company to show that the last two years were not a fluke.

Must-watch game: at Vikings (in London), Week 5

This game is across the pond, which always adds a certain level of intrigue. And while these games tend to be sloppy, the UK has a large contingent of Jets fans, so the crowd should favor New York and Rodgers. Other storylines: Minnesota’s Sam Darnold could get to face his old team, if he beats out J.J. McCarthy to start at quarterback, and the Jets’ offensive line will be tested by Vikings defensive coordinator Brian Flores.

Find the best deals on tickets to see your favorite teams.

Toughest stretch: Weeks 1-11

Yes, that’s a long stretch. It’s not even necessarily full of intimidating opponents, but the schedule itself is daunting. The Jets have six games on the road in that stretch, including in Weeks 1 and 2. After facing a Super Bowl contender in the 49ers for the “Monday Night Football” season opener, they’ll travel to Nashville to play the Titans on a short week, then have a Week 3 home game against the Patriots on Thursday night. That means they’ll play three games in 11 days.

The Jets opted not to take their bye week following the game in London, so they won’t get a break until Week 12. After London, they host the Bills on “Monday Night Football” … with a short turnaround for another road game against the Steelers.

They’ll also face the Texans on Thursday night in Week 9, a few days after facing the Patriots on the road.

It’s a logistical nightmare and it will be interesting to see how coach Robert Saleh handles practice plans for older players like Rodgers and Smith.


Former Jets offensive coordinator Mike LaFleur will be back at MetLife Stadium with Rams QB Matthew Stafford in Week 16. (Kirby Lee / USA Today)

Game that has gotten tougher: vs. Rams, Week 16

The Jets haven’t played the Rams since 2020 but a lot has obviously changed for both teams since then. That was Adam Gase’s last season as coach, Jared Goff was still the Rams’ quarterback and, as many Jets fans (not so fondly) remember: The Jets’ win snapped a 13-game losing streak to start the season and might’ve kept them from earning the 2021 No. 1 pick and drafting Trevor Lawrence (they took Wilson at No. 2). The Rams were a surprise playoff team last year, surrounding quarterback with Matthew Stafford with elite weaponry in Puka Nacua and Cooper Kupp. Former Jets offensive coordinator Mike LaFleur now holds the same job with the Rams.

One game the Jets can’t afford to lose: vs./at Patriots, Weeks 3 and 8

The Jets finally snapped their 15-game losing streak to the Patriots last year, albeit at the end of the season in a meaningless game that helped put New England in position to draft its next quarterback in Drake Maye. It would be a fitting addition to Jets-Patriots lore if Maye beat the Jets in his rookie season — especially in a year when the tables have turned and New England is rebuilding while the Jets are trying to go all-in on contention. It would not go over well if the Jets lost these games.

Best offense the Jets will face: Texans, Week 9

The Jets got the best of the Texans last year in a surprising win where Zach Wilson (yes, Zach Wilson) outplayed C.J. Stroud. The Texans have reloaded and will be healthier this time. Nico Collins and Tank Dell are back at wide receiver, and the Texans added star wideout Stefon Diggs plus running back Joe Mixon to what already was one of the NFL’s best offenses. It will be another tough test for the Jets defense.

Best defense the Jets will face: 49ers, Week 1

Pro Football Focus rated the Jets defense as the best in the NFL last season. The 49ers were No. 2. Arik Armstead and Javon Kinlaw (now with the Jets) are gone, but the 49ers added Floyd and most of the other key players — Nick Bosa, Javon Hargrave, Fred Warner, Charvarius Ward and Talanoa Hufanga — all return. Maybe the 49ers will take a step back with some roster turnover but the talent is still there. This group shouldn’t be taken lightly.

Scoop City Newsletter

Scoop City Newsletter

Free, daily NFL updates direct to your inbox. Sign up

Free, daily NFL updates direct to your inbox. Sign up

BuyBuy Scoop City Newsletter

Predicted record: 9-8

The Jets have the talent to be much better than this, of course, but they also have a lot of questions that need to be answered before I’m ready to predict more wins. There are injury questions all over the offense, including at quarterback, wide receiver (Mike Williams) and on the offensive line (Smith, Moses, Alijah Vera-Tucker). The bye week coming so late in the season is also troubling. Opponent-wise, the schedule doesn’t look terribly intimidating — but it’s always a fool’s errand putting too much stock into how things went the previous season when breaking this down. The Jets coaching staff still needs to prove it’s capable of coaching a winning football team, and legitimate questions remain about offensive coordinator Nathaniel Hackett’s ability to lead the offense, even if Rodgers is the one ultimately calling plays.

The Jets can make the playoffs with nine wins but they’re more likely to get there with 10 or 11. I’ll feel better about their chances if all of their older players survive training camp unscathed.

Predicted AFC East finish: Third

1. Dolphins
2. Bills
3. Jets
4. Patriots

This would be a disappointing finish, but the Jets still have to prove they’re ready to leapfrog Miami and Buffalo before they are anointed the AFC East favorites — even if they have the most talented roster on paper. This should be one of the best divisions in the NFL and the Jets will experience some growing pains with so many new pieces on offense. That essentially includes Rodgers, who played just four regular-season snaps before getting injured in 2023.

(Top photo: Elsa / Getty Images)

Continue Reading