WHEN THE LIONS HAVE THE BALL: This isn't your older cousin's Detroit Lions. Matthew Stafford tossed four touchdown passes last week against the Redskins to lead Detroit to a 37-25 comeback victory, and the second-year signal caller will be looking to prove who is the better 2009 draft-class quarterback in a showdown against Mark Sanchez. Check that, he'll be facing a stingy Jets defense that is much better than its 18th pass ranking… With all-world wideout Calvin Johnson running routes for Stafford, the Jets D may see cornerbacks Darrelle Revis and Antonio Cromartie taking their own sides of the field unless Revis is in fact 100 percent… Rex Ryan said he doesn't expect the Lions to put up a number near their NFC best average of 28.2 points per game. "Come out and prove me wrong, but I doubt it," he said.
WHEN THE JETS HAVE THE BALL: New York's offensive line will face a unit with 23 sacks this season, led by rookie defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh, who has taken down the quarterback six and a half times this year. Suh returned a fumble for a touchdown against the Redskins. The Jets give up the fewest quarterback hits in the league, so expect their trench unit to slow down the Lions… New York's receiving corps can't help but improve from a pathetic showing against Green Bay. Sure-handed Jerricho Cotchery may have cost New York the game with drops, and Sanchez had two quote-unquote "picks" where the ball was ripped out of the receivers' hands after a good pass. LaDainian Tomlinson should see some screen passes come his way, and New York works well off of quick slants to Braylon Edwards. That should work well against Detroit's pass rush.
THE X-FACTOR: Hate to get obvious, but it is Revis. Everyone wants to see him perform in full force, and what better player to do it against than arguably the best r
eceiver in the league. Take Johnson out of the game and the Detroit offense will sputter.
MY PICK: Jets win, 24-13.