Jets enjoying early success but the job is far from complete – The Denver Post


There are no homecoming games in NFL, but the Jets were once considered an easy matchup for opposing teams.

That has not been the case through five games as Gang Green sits at 3-2 and second in the AFC East heading into its matchup with the Green Bay Packers on Sunday.

Despite their early season success, Jets head coach Robert Saleh says he wants his team to enjoy what they’ve accomplished so far but understands the job is far from done.

“I think confidence is contagious,” Saleh said. “I think our guys have deserved the right to feel good about themselves, but at the same time this league is very humbling, and it’ll take it away from you in a heartbeat. We still haven’t done anything yet.

“I think we’d be remiss not to reflect and appreciate what we’ve been able to accomplish to this point, but at the same time, you have to remind yourself you’re still nothing in the grand scheme of things. Only one team in the league is happy at the end of the year, and the goal is to get to that point every year but to do that, you’ve got to take it one week at a time and stay focused on the moment and attack those moments.

“I love our group, I’ve said it before, I feel like our locker room, a lot of internally driven individuals who just want to be their absolute best every single day. I feel like our group just wants to come out and play and just have fun, so it’s a fun group to be around and we’re still going to have our ups and downs, I mean there’s a lot of football left this season, but just got to take it one day at a time.”

Saleh has said that this is not the same Jets team that fans have become accustomed to seeing during previous years. He even said he is taking receipts from people who constantly mock him and his team.

The Jets players have responded well to the receipts comment as they have won two straight and three of their last four games. The return of Zach Wilson after he missed the first three games because of a bone bruise and a meniscus injury has also helped them find their identity.

Wilson’s play during the last five quarters has been some of his best in a Jets uniform. During the fourth quarter against the Steelers, Wilson completed 10 of 12 passes for 128 yards and threw a touchdown pass in the Green and White’s 24-20 comeback victory against the Steelers. He followed that up with a 14 of 21 for 210 yards performance in the 40-17 stomping of the Dolphins.

“He’s more comfortable,” Jets offensive coordinator Mike LaFleur said about Wilson. “He’s more comfortable with the league and the speed of it and more comfortable with the offense and his teammates.

“He went in that mindset in the fourth quarter against the Steelers. I don’t think he put anyone on his back, executed and threw to open receivers and receivers did a tremendous job of getting separation and the line, particularly in that fourth quarter against the Steelers protected as well as they did all game.

“I thought he went out and just played good quarterback in the fourth quarter, and I thought it carried over in the fourth quarter in this last game. He did a lot of good things and as an offense, we left a lot on the field. But the guys executed enough to get it done.”

Now the Jets will look to carry that momentum over to their next game against a Packers team that is also 3-2 but feels like they’ve underachieved. Green Bay is coming off a 27-22 loss to the Giants in London.

Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers sat out Wednesday’s practice due to a thumb injury that he suffered on the final hit of the game against the Giants. However, coach Matt LaFleur said he didn’t have “much concern” about Rodgers’ availability for Sunday.

In five games this season, Rodgers has thrown for 1,157 yards, eight touchdowns and three interceptions. While he is 3-0 during his career against the Jets, Rodgers has a QBR (total quarterback ranking) of 44.6, which is the lowest in his career through five games.

“To be the best, you have to play the best,” Corey Davis said about Rodgers. “They’re a great team and obviously Aaron Rodgers is a future Hall of Famer.

“He’s done a few things in his career, so we have to be on top of our game to do what we have to do to get this win.”



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