Don't pass on the Jets

They're having an up-and-down year, but you don't want to face the Jets in the playoffs

Originally Published: October 28, 2011
By Trent Dilfer | ESPN Insider
JetsAndrew Mills/US PresswireThe Jets D' can make New York a terrifying playoff foe.

If you took the first seven weeks of the NFL season as a measuring device on where your team really stands in the overall picture, it'd be hard to blame New York Jets fans for not knowing where to line up the needle.

At 4-3, they've been fortunate to pull off a pair of key wins -- one over Dallas, the other on Sunday against San Diego -- and a three-game losing stretch seemed to re-emphasize many of the worst fears that this team was actually regressing. Is the defense losing its steam? Is QB Mark Sanchez not improving? Is coach Rex Ryan's bravado hollow?

But with the win over San Diego, in a game that for a while seemed lost, the Jets reminded once again why they can be a terrifying team to face if they can get into the playoffs.

This is a league dominated by great quarterbacking. And the teams that have reached the Super Bowl in recent years prove that point. But while the Jets aren't yet great, they can, more than any team right now, take down great quarterbacks. And their ability to do that, through a mix of great scheming and significant talent, makes them a contender. The win over the Chargers told the story once again.

Former Super Bowl-winning quarterback Trent Dilfer is an analyst for a variety of ESPN programs including NFL Live, NFL PrimeTime and SportsCenter (Sunday and Monday nights during the NFL season). He also contributes to Monday Night Countdown, ESPN Radio programs, and ESPN's annual Super Bowl week and NFL Draft coverage.