Skip to main content

Sauce Gardner: Jets 'Expect a Lot Out of Ourselves' in 2024

All-Pro CB Loves Having Six Primetime Games in Coming Season


With the Jets 2024 regular-season schedule released, players get to see how their season will unfold. The Jets have a franchise-high six primetime games this season, which is one more than they had in 2023. Although this is uncharted territory for the Green and White, All-Pro cornerback Sauce Gardner believes it's nothing the team can't handle.

"We're always ready," Gardner said. "It's a primetime game. We're always going to be ourselves, we're always going to have the same identity, we're not going to change anything, just because it's primetime. It's great to be able to have those primetime games, because a lot of people are expecting a lot out of us. We expect a lot out of ourselves. Everybody is going to be watching and we learned how to have those type of games. I love those type of games because it's going to be competitive, and I'm a competitor."

The Jets first primetime opponent is on the road against the NFC champion, the San Francisco, on "Monday Night Football" to open the season on Sept. 9. Many key players from their recent Super Bowl appearance returned to the 49ers, which should make for a competitive matchup.

"It's great being able to go to San Fran and play against those guys and a great team," Gardner said. "They have Debo [Samuel], [Brandon] Aiyuk, [Brock] Purdy at quarterback, Christian McCaffrey, Trent Williams, all those guys. The defense has Fred [Warner], Charvarius Ward, they got those dogs on defense as well. So, it's going to be a great game."

The biggest change this year for Gardner and the Jets will be in the AFC East. The Patriots no longer have HC Bill Belichick, but added QBs Jacoby Brissett and Drake Maye. The Bills no longer have WR Stefon Diggs, but have WR Keon Coleman, while the Dolphins lost DT Christian Wilkins, but added WR Odell Beckham Jr. While the Jets' opponents may look different, Gardner is bullish on the moves the Jets made in the offseason.

"We got Haason [Reddick] and Haason's already an elite pass rusher and he dominates in the run game as well," Gardner said. "When you're a cornerback and you get one of those type of guys, you're very excited because you know that's one less second you have to cover. Now, we had a few other guys that we brought in on the other side of the ball. Getting Olu [Fashanu], [Malachi] Corley at receiver, Mike [Williams], Braelon Allen, you know I'm looking forward to the season with my new teammates."

The game Gardner is most looking forward to in the 2024 season is the Week 9 rematch against the Houston Texans on "Thursday Night Football" at MetLife Stadium. Last year, the Jets beat the Texans, 30-6, though Houston played without WRs Nico Collins and Tank Dell.

"I'm excited to go against the Texas you know, they have a great team, an elite team," Gardner said. "Stefon [Diggs] just went over there. C.J . [Stroud] is a great quarterback, upcoming elite quarterback. I always knew he was going to be the quarterback that he is since day one. Nico [Collins], Tank Dell and then on the defensive side they have [Derek] Stingley. They got some they got some guys over there, so I'm looking forward to that."

Related Content