In 2009 and 2010, the Jets had to navigate the road to the Super Bowl the hard way, as wild cards forced to win away from home.
Each year, the Jets won two playoff games on the road, with their Super Bowl quests derailed in Indianapolis and Pittsburgh, respectively.
This year, the Jets have a shot at winning the AFC East and earning the home playoff game that goes along with it. If they can continue to build upon their three-game winning streak, the Jets could earn a bye — and perhaps the top seed in the AFC field.
Tonight’s game against the Patriots (NBC, 8:20 p.m. ET) presents a great opportunity to move toward that outcome.
Coach Rex Ryan knows it, and he has shared it with his team. ESPN’s Sal Paolantonio reports that Ryan told the players, “We want a home playoff game.”
If they could get one, or two, and if they could win both, they could finally get back to the Super Bowl, for the first time since 1969. Given that the game will be played on the home field of the franchise the Jets unexpectedly toppled in Super Bowl III, that would definitely be more than enough to shut Joe Namath up, perhaps permanently.