The Jets' ability to hold off an opponent's final drive the last two weeks is encouraging, but the defense still has a ways to go.
"We still got to start faster," LB Bart Scott said. "I mean, we had trouble getting out of the blocks fast and letting teams have that first drive, and after that we settled down. You'd rather be trying to get better at what you're not doing well this time of year than playing well and spiraling the other way.
"But by no means because you finished off before does that mean you're going to finish off every situation. The key, as a good defense, is not to be put in those situations."
The Jets gave up a game-winning drive to the Broncos, which put them in a precarious spot when looking ahead to the wild card. Scott notes that the team has to win out in order to make the postseason, after being unable to beat the Patriots at all this season. There will be no home games or division titles, meaning if the Jets are to reach the Super Bowl it will be the same, difficult road path.
"We put ourselves in a hole that we'd rather not be in," Scott said. "The focus was winning the division and going about it the easy way. [But] the reality is, we're probably fighting for the last playoff spot unless Pittsburgh loses three games or two AFC games, which probably isn't going to happen.
"We're not afraid of anybody if we get in," Scott said. "But we have to get in. There's been a lot of good teams at 11-5 who haven't been able to get in."
Scott is watching the games play out, to see how it impacts his own team. The Jets are playing the Chiefs at 1 p.m. Sunday at MetLife Stadium.
"We have an opportunity to right that ship," Scott said, "because we play AFC opponents coming up -- Miami in the last game -- and that's what makes this week so much more important. It's an AFC opponent so it counts in all the tiebreakers. So that's what we're trying to focus on. You can't really look at their schedule who they're playing, but it's human nature."