New York Jets 2022 schedule: Zach Wilson faces tough start vs. AFC North

Zach Wilson and the Jets open the 2022 season against a tough Baltimore Ravens defense. Jasen Vinlove/USA Today Sports

FLORHAM PARK, N.J. -- The New York Jets' 2022 schedule was released along with the rest of the NFL slate Thursday.

The 2022 NFL season will kick off on Thursday, Sept. 8 with the Buffalo Bills vs. the Los Angeles Rams at SoFi Stadium. ESPN opens its schedule with Monday Night Football on Sept. 12 featuring the Denver Broncos at the Seattle Seahawks.

The NFL expanded to 17 regular-season games last season. The final regular-season games for the 2022 season will be played Jan. 8, 2023. The playoffs begin Jan. 14 and continue through Super Bowl LVII on Feb. 12 in Glendale, Arizona

Here's what's in store for the Jets:


Sept. 11: vs. Ravens

Sept. 18: at Cleveland

Sept. 25: vs. Bengals

Oct. 2: at Pittsburgh

Oct. 9: vs. Dolphins

Oct. 16: at Green Bay

Oct. 23: at Denver

Oct. 30: vs. Patriots

Nov. 6: vs. Bills

Nov. 13: Bye

Nov. 20: at New England

Nov. 27: vs. Bears

Dec. 4: at Minnesota

Dec. 11: at Buffalo

Dec. 18: vs. Lions

Dec. 22: vs. Jaguars (TNF)

Jan. 1: at Seattle

Jan. 7/8: at Miami

Strength of schedule: T-17th, .495

Biggest takeaway

Oh, my AFC North. The Jets, who have lost 12 straight games in the month of September (dating to 2018), will tell us a lot about their 2022 prospects by how they handle a four-game gauntlet against the AFC North. It won't be easy. Quarterback Zach Wilson will be tested by the Ravens' outstanding secondary and the Steelers' terrific front seven, led by T.J. Watt. The Jets' defense will face two elite quarterbacks in the Ravens' Lamar Jackson and the Bengals' Joe Burrow. The question is, will it be three? Maybe they can avoid the Browns' Deshaun Watson, who faces a possible suspension. These are solid, well-coached teams. If the Jets aren't ready at the outset, their season could be toast, just like 2021, 2020, 2019 ... you get the point.

Revenge game

Can a team seek revenge after getting its butt kicked for six years in a row? If the answer is yes, the Jets should have the R word on their mind for their two meetings against the Patriots. They have lost 12 straight against them, including two last season by a combined score of 79-19. Coach Bill Belichick arguably ran up the score in one game, and it irked Jets players and team officials. In the other game, Wilson threw four interceptions in the blink of an eye. Frankly, the Patriots aren't that good anymore. It's time for the Jets to say, "Enough is enough."

What the oddsmakers think

The Jets' over/under is 5.5 wins, which is greater than their average win total over the last six seasons (4.5). Shame on them if they can't win at least six games. After years of rebuilding -- it feels like decades, right? -- the Jets have improved their personnel on both sides of the ball to the point where they absolutely should be playing meaningful games in December. The difference between 6-11 and, say, 9-8, will be Wilson and his development.

Bold prediction

The Jets will finish 7-10, not good enough to be a serious contender, but significant improvement from last season. Wilson will struggle out of the gate against the different defensive styles of the AFC North, but he will find his footing over the second half of the season when the schedule softens.