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On paper, Sunday’s New York Jets vs. Jacksonville Jaguars game promises to be an uneventful trouncing by the Jets of an injury-riddled and talent-bereft Jaguars squad. However, in the papers these days, even the most favorably uneven matchup for the Jets comes with a healthy serving of material to hype the Jets up before game time.
Sometimes, the material is generated by the talented and colorful Jets squad going against the tide – such as this week, when the Jets decided to wear their original team franchises’ colors in spite of their own fans’ vociferous disapproval. Other times, motivation is provided from players who just seem to be bated into getting into a war of words against the tremendous trash talking Jets football squad that can actually back it up on the field.
Every team decides to wear old team jerseys every so often, but the Jets decision to wear blue and gold Titans of New York replicas has been met with unusual ire from fans. In the franchise’s three seasons in the NFL, the Titans compiled a mediocre 19 – 23 record, thereby igniting some fans’ reactions to the Jets decision to play in a short lived and unsuccessful franchise’s uniforms. Others have taken issue with the Titans’ black and cold jersey colors; one fan derisively called them “cub scouts colors.”
The distraught Jets faithful are missing the bigger picture, however: as the veritable “Bad News Bears” of football, the Jets like to take good natured, outspoken stances against the sometimes insufferably postured NFL decorum. Ryan will make a gaudy prediction about his team, Mark Sanchez will do something a little eccentric (or metro-centric perhaps), and Bart Scott will talk some righteous smack. However, it is the Jets very maverick spirit that harnesses its team’s unique chemistry and resolve, without which the Jets may not have accomplished consecutive road playoff wins in both the 2009 and 2010 AFC playoffs, or numerous resurgent fourth quarter comebacks since the 2010 season.
So fan disapproval of the Jets decision to pick an unlikeable retro jersey is just another boon to the Jets’ spirits; one that this misfit squad will use for a locker room laugh and the generation of strong team chemistry on the field against the Jaguars this afternoon.