By Tyson Rauch
On Sunday the New York Jets (6-8) try to get back on the winning track against the Cleveland Browns (4-10) at MetLife Stadium. The Jets enter the game relatively healthy, while the Browns will be without tight end Jordan Cameron (concussion), one of their best players on offense. The loss of Cameron could lead to a big day for Gang Green’s defense.
The Cleveland offense has featured the passing attack as their ground game has struggled for most of the season. The Browns rushing offense averages 84 yards a game, which is ranked 27th in the NFL. Look for the Jets and their 3rd ranked run defense to attack the line of scrimmage and force Cleveland into a pass heavy offense.
The Browns down the field passing attack features two prominent playmakers: wide receiver Josh Gordon and tight end Jordan Cameron. With Cameron out due to injury, the Jets defense must focus all of their attention on Gordon. The Browns receiver has had a breakout season with 74 catches, 1,467 receiving yards, and nine touchdowns. The New York secondary must do an excellent job in coverage and prevent yards after the catch. Keep an eye on the play of defensive back Antonio Cromartie as he continues to struggle with a hip injury. If Cromartie cannot stay with Gordon he will be replaced by either Darrin Walls or Kyle Wilson.
Domination time for the defense
This is the type of game where the New York Jets defense should be able to flex their muscles. The lack of a running game allows the Jets to put all of their attention on pressuring the quarterback. The Browns offensive line has yielded 43 sacks and 109 quarterback hits, which means Gang Green should make it a very long day for Jason Campbell.
Will the offense help out?
The biggest question on Sunday is if the Jets offense will be able to put up points against a talented Browns defense. Cleveland is ranked eighth against the run, ninth against the pass, and eighth in yards allowed. (Note: The Browns could be without their best defensive back Joe Haden as he is dealing with a hip injury.) New York enters the game fairly healthy on offense as Santonio Holmes, Jeremy Kerley, and Kellen Winslow are all back in the lineup. Now it is up to rookie quarterback Geno Smith to maximize his resources and find a way to string together some scoring drives.
LB Quinton Coples (shoulder), CB Antonio Cromartie (hip), DT Kenrick Ellis (back), WR Santonio Holmes (hamstring), RT Austin Howard (knee), DT Sheldon Richardson (wrist), DE Muhammad Wilkerson (wrist), TE Kellen Winslow (knee), WR David Nelson (ribs), CB Ellis Lankster (jaw)
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Tyson Rauch is a freelance writer covering all things NFL. His work can be found on Examiner.com.