Throughout the season, NewYorkJets.com reporters Eric Allen, Ethan Greenberg and Randy Lange will each give their predictions to a series of questions regarding this year's Jets.
Today's question: Which Jet is primed for a breakout performance against the Broncos?
EA: I'll take WR Elijah Moore. He was on the verge of breaking out last week, finishing with 4 catches for 47 yards against the Patriots. He nearly had his first pro TD during the home opener, springing free on a wheel route down the home sideline in the second quarter. But Moore and Zach Wilson had to settle for a 27-yard gain instead for a 49-yard scoring connection as the pass angled the speedster to the boundary. The Broncos have an excellent secondary, but Giants WR Sterling Sheppard had a big day (7-113-1TD) against them in Week 1, albeit working from the slot. Jaguars wideout Marvin Jones (6-55-1TD) was productive on the outside in Week 2 against a talented defensive backfield operating without CB Ronald Darby. Moore already made a jump from Week 1 to Week 2 and I expect another one. On defense, Bryce Huff has recorded 2 of the Jets' 11 QB hits. Huff will rack up his first sack of the season and watch out for Braxton Berrios, the team's leader in catches (12) and receiving yards (124) while filling in for Jamison Crowder in Weeks 1 and 2, on special teams. The Broncos yielded a KO return score last week and they ranked 31st in kick-return coverage last season.
EG: I'll go with Quinnen Williams. He has hit the QB twice but hasn't recorded a sack. I think that will change on Sunday at Denver against a Broncos offense that yielded 3 sacks to the Jaguars in Week 2. QB Teddy Bridgewater was also sacked twice in Week 1. DC Jeff Ulbrich said last week that Williams, who did not play in the preseason, knocked off some rust against the Panthers. So after two games, I think Williams will start to pick up where he left off last season when he emerged as one of the NFL's top young defensive tackles. Williams had 7 sacks in 2020 and he likes being in this attack-style defense under Ulbrich and HC Robert Saleh. Fellow DT Sheldon Rankins got his first sack of the season against the Patriots and I think No. 95 is due. I'd also keep an eye on the Jets specialists -- P Thomas Morstead and K Matt Ammendola -- because of the altitude. ST coach Brant Boyer said that Ammendola has elite leg strength and with the altitude change, that could expand his range. He hit a 54-yard field goal in the preseason at Green Bay that would have been good from at least 60 yards out.
RL: It's time for Quinnen Williams. The Jets' third-year DL is off to a fairly quiet start with his biggest plays a pair of Week 1 QB hits and last week's late goal-line tackle for loss against the Patriots. One weakness for the Broncos' Teddy Bridgewater offense has been yielding pressure on the quarterback to the tune of 5 sacks and 14 QB hits. Of those, 2 sacks and 9 hits were administered by Giants and Jaguars D-linemen. Also, I don't know William's relationship with his older brother, but the sibling rivalry may be about to kick in since Quinnen and Quincy, the Jets' recently signed LB, have 5 tackles, a TFL and no sacks each. First to the QB could win family braggin' rights but, more important, could play a pivotal role in a strong Jets defensive showing in Denver's home opener.