The last time we saw the New York Jets, they were only a win away from making it to their first Super Bowl since Broadway Joe’s guarantee over 40 years ago.
The Jets have revived themselves as viable Super Bowl contenders, and are currently sitting atop the AFC East under the guidance of returning Head Coach Rex Ryan, fresh off his acclaimed performance on HBO’s training camp series “Hardknocks.” The team has relied on its returning stars like second year quaterback Mark Sanchez who, plagued with interceptions last season, hasn’t given up a turnover in his first five starts. The team has seen great performances from its new additions, most notably that of LaDainian Tomlinson, who is having a renaissance season and returning much to his old form.
With their defense and offense firing on all cylinders the team has sprung to an impressive 4-1 start, which has electrified their fan base in a way that hasn’t been seen for years.
“Their team really has no holes; they have so many superstars on their roster I feel like they are going to be very tough to beat,” said fourth-year, long-time Jets fan Ryan Laino. “I’d say they are one of the top three teams in the NFL.”
But for all the excitement they have created, the Jets have had their share of controversy early in the season. Braylon Edwards was arrested for a DWI after blowing a 0.16 when pulled over. And Darrelle Revis held out for all of training camp and the pre-season, which could have devastated the team’s defensive strength. While these incidents have created headlines, their tremendous start has made it easier to forget about them.
“I’m happy the way the season has gone despite their hiccups, but if they start losing this will come back to bite them” said Laino.
While Jets fans have already begun to make plans for Super Bowl XLV, the Giants have not experienced the same amount of excitement. While the team is 3-2 over their last five games and in first place in the NFC East, their fans haven’t been as enthusiastic about their season.
“A lot of people have already seemed to count them out, even before the season had started,” said fourth-year Giants fan Daniel Caruso.
After a disappointing 8-8 finish last year, the Giants had a mildly successful start to their season. Eli Manning has been streaky at QB, posting over a thousand passing yards, but also throwing eight interceptions. They rebounded from two early losses to the Colts and Titans, by beating the Texans and Bears very impressively, which has restored some faith to the fan base, but has done little to take back the sports page from the Jets.
“I still feel extremely optimistic and excited about the season,” said Caruso. “People are now focused on the Jets, but I feel the Giants are going to surprise both New York and the NFL.”