Rex Ryan let the crowd at last week's Jets Kickoff Luncheon know how he feels about our season-opening game against the Raiders on Sunday and our 2014 season in general.
"I think I've waited all my life to coach this football team," the head coach said. "And it's finally here. We've got what we need, there are no excuses, and it's sitting right in front of us. And believe me, I can't wait to get going."
If that doesn't have you ready to strap on the pads and do battle with the Pride & Poise Boys, then here are nine more things to get you ready for Jets-Raiders:
1. Geno 2.0
2. Bumpy Ride for Carr?
Derek Carr, a second-round draft choice this year as Smith was last year, won the Raiders starting job over Matt Schaub off his preseason passing (30-for-45, 4 TDs, 1 INT, 2 sacks, 108.2 rating) and his maturity. Now it's time for the Jets defense to Rex this new Carr. In his five seasons at the helm, Ryan's Jets have faced rookies for the first time in nine games. Their record: 8-1, with the only loss coming at Seattle against Russell Wilson a year before the Seahawks' Super Bowl run.
3. Fans Will Be of Good Cheer
That slice of Jets Nation attending this game at MetLife Stadium have been asked to wear white gear, and they'll also get a white towel at the gate. The players will be in their white jerseys and pants. The idea is a Whiteout to freak out the black-shirted Raiders. TE
4. The Three Rushketeers
5. And Other Debuts
Johnson's not the only new Jet who will get the crowd shouting. WR
6. Corner Chess Match
7. Slowing the Raiders' Run
To bring about a Carr crash (No. 2 above), the Jets' run defense led by MLB
8. Austin's Back in Town
Austin Howard, our starting right tackle for two seasons, returns to his former Meadowlands home office, this time as the Raiders' right guard — in fact, at 6'7" and 333, one of the biggest guards in the game. "It was a position where they felt I could contribute to the team," he said. "Quite honestly I didn’t care if it was kicker, punter or whatever. Wherever I can contribute, that’s what I’ll do." Sunday he'll only have to contribute by going up against one of his Cortland dance partners, DE
9. Eastern Exposure
The Raiders have this problem heading East. They've lost their last 13 games in the Eastern Time Zone dating to 2009. They've lost those games by an average of 14½ points. In six of those games they never led. They've also lost their last four to the Jets in the Meadowlands. For all these reasons and more, head coach Dennis Allen decided to fly his team in Thursday, three days, not two, ahead of the game. "We wanted to do something to change some things up," he said. The Jets will try to limit the change to their early arrival.
READ: Rex and the Jets Are All In for White Out
READ: Adams, McFadden Ready to Roll
WATCH: Miller: 'Wilkerson & Richardson Are Stars'
WATCH: Geno's Personal Goals Are 'to Win'
WATCH: Behind Enemy Lines: Oakland Raiders