This is the worst possible matchup for the New York Jets -- on both sides of the ball.
The Denver Broncos average 29 points per game; the Jets have scored 29 points only three times in Geno Smith's 21 career starts. There are too many bad matchups on the perimeter for the Jets to slow down Peyton Manning & Co. Julius Thomas, in particular, poses a huge problem in the red zone, as the Jets have allowed five touchdowns to tight ends in the past three games. If they had one shutdown defender to lock up one of Manning's weapons, the Jets could plan for the rest of them. But that isn't the case. Rex Ryan used a chess analogy to describe his battle against Manning, saying it feels like he's facing Bobby Fischer. It could be a quick checkmate.
The Jets' only chance is to shorten the game by running the ball and keeping Manning on the sideline. That might be tough, as the Broncos yield only 88 rushing yards per game. If they face too many third-and-long situations, Smith will crumble under pressure from Von Miller and DeMarcus Ware.
This is an enormous challenge for the Jets, who have to face the New England Patriots four days later. They're staring at the strong possibility of 1-6.
Prediction: Broncos 35, Jets 10