NFL Wire News

Jets coach expects to face improved Colts team


The Sports Xchange

FLORHAM PARK, N.J. — New York Jets head coach Todd Bowles is pretty certain that the Indianapolis Colts that take the field Monday night at Lucas Oil Stadium won’t be the same team that got routed by the Buffalo Bills at Ralph Wilson Stadium last Sunday.

“I think Buffalo played well (and) Indy made some mistakes,” Bowles said Wednesday following the Jets’ first practice of the week. “Going into Week One, you don’t know what’s going to happen. I know that we’ve got them at their house on Monday night and they’ll be a totally different team. We just have to be ready for their best.”

The Colts were nowhere near their best against the Bills, who scored the game’s first 24 points and cruised to a 27-14 win over an Indianapolis team that is a popular pick to represent the AFC in the Super Bowl.

Colts quarterback Andrew Luck was held in check by ex-Jets head coach Rex Ryan’s blitz-happy defense. Luck finished 26-of-49 for 243 yards with two touchdowns and two interceptions.

“Those guys, you just hope to slow them down, you can never stop them,” Bowles said. “You just try to get some stops in between.”

Bowles was the defensive coordinator for the Arizona Cardinals in 2013, when the Cardinals dominated the Colts in a 40-11 win in Arizona. But Bowles isn’t buying into the idea that a game two years ago can provide a harbinger of what might happen Monday.

“We won the game,” Bowles said. “But that was two years ago.”

Bowles also has much more on his plate now than he did two years ago. As a head coach, it’s his task to make sure the extra day between games doesn’t leave the Jets over-prepared for the Colts.

“You’ve just got to make sure you don’t over-coach them and overdo it,” Bowles said. “Make sure they get the proper rest, but make sure they get the proper work.

“Just (avoid) putting too much work in, seeing too much on film instead of seeing what you’re seeing and then working with what you’ve got to work with and let(ting) the guys do their job.”

INJURY NOTES: Jets head coach Todd Bowles said Wednesday he doesn’t know if cornerback Antonio Cromartie, who suffered a knee injury in Sunday’s opener, will play against the Colts on Monday night. … DE Kevin Vickerson was released with an injury settlement Wednesday. Vickerson missed the final three preseason games with a hamstring injury before being placed on injured reserve on Sept. 1. … WR Devin Smith may make his NFL debut on Monday night. Smith missed most of training camp due to fractured ribs and a partially punctured lung. He was cleared before the regular-season opener but was inactive for the Jets’ 31-10 win over the Browns.

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