The Jets and Giants first met in 1970, at least a decade when both teams were already established. The Jets were a part of the AFL and the Giants, the NFL. With the merger, the Jets remained on the other conference. Their first meeting resulted in a win for Big Blue who doubled up on the Jets 22-10.
At this time, the Jets still played at Shea Stadium until they relocated to the Giants Stadium. Of course, Jets fans refused to call it by this name and it was instead known as "The Meadowlands" when the Jets played. And from 1974 to 1993, the two franchises alternated wins and losses. The Jets would win a pair, then the Giants, and then the Jets.
But from 1996 to 2011, the Giants won five straight including three games decided by at least 11 points. The Jets would finally snap the streak in their most recent meeting in 2015 in a 23-20 overtime victory in their second meeting at the MetLife Stadium.
Their next regular season meeting will be in 2019, a game that could be a battle between two rising contenders depending on how well their rebuilding efforts go.
New York Giants Recent History
Save for the '70s and '90s, the Giants have been a championship-level team. In the early days of the NFL, they won four NFL Championships between 1927 to 1956. Then they went on a rough stretch losing five straight NFL Championship games in six seasons. They would then miss the playoffs entirely for over 16 years until 1981.
The 1980's was the Giants' resurgence into the "Big Blue Wrecking Crew", one of the NFL's most-feared defences led by the league's greatest defender: Lawrence Taylor. They would finally snap their 30-year championship drought and win their first Super Bowl in 1986. They repeated in 1990.
They would remain a fringe contender and make another Super Bowl ten years later. In 2007, they would pull off one of the greatest playoff runs culminating in an upset over the 18-0 Patriots to recapture the Super Bowl. Their encore came four years later when they once again defeated New England for another chip.
New York Jets Recent History
Most Jets fans today won't remember their greatest run: a 1968 Super Bowl victory over the powerhouse Colts. Quarterback Joe Namath made a bold promise they would win and he delivered. But to this day, this remains the crown jewel in the Jets' otherwise disappointing run in the NFL.
While not a complete laughing stock, the Jets have spent the majority of their existence as a non-playoff team usually winning between six to eight games save for the few playoff spurts. In the late 2000's, they had a bit of a revival under coach Rex Ryan where they would make two consecutive AFC Championship trips.
But it's back to missing 17-week football for the Jets as they've missed the playoffs since the start of the decade. A driven coach and a promising quarterback could bring some hope.
New York Giants Outlook
The Giants made plenty of solid offseason additions including drafting bluechip running back Barkley and adding former Patriot Nate Solder and talented linesman Will Hernandez to bolster the o-line. The offence should be slightly better but only if Manning keeps up.
The two-time Super Bowl MVP hasn't played like the elite quarterback he's supposed to be and at times looks like the liability on offence. 2018 will be a do-or-die season for him. While on defence, the Giants barely made improvements outside third-round pick Lorenzo Carter (LB).
The G-Men have plenty of talent on offence and if Manning reinvigorates himself, they will be in the mix. But the defence and specials are the worst in the division. The Giants will be an exciting team even but are still far away from becoming a contender.
New York Jets Outlook
Throughout their history, the Jets have been defined by a solid defence and a lacklustre offence thanks mostly to having no dependable quarterbacks. Namath remains their greatest quarterback but they're wishing that Darnold can at least bring stability to the position.
Darnold was ranked the best quarterback in the 2017 class and fell to the Jets. New York traded a fortune to move up and wasn't able to fix the team due to giving up so many picks. They instead opted to acquire players in free agency getting the likes of cornerback Trumaine Johnson and edge rusher Courtney Upshaw.
The Jets are still not a good team but they won five games in 2017 despite having one of the worst rosters. They may stay the same or improve a little but as long as they keep plugging away, they could be a contender as soon as next season.
Both teams are a hot mess making this game as interesting as watching a trainwreck. The Giants have a spectacular offence but not much of a defence while the Jets are almost a mirror version having a decent defence but barely anything on offence.
The Giants' offence will be dynamic with Barkley and superstar receiver Odell Beckham Jr. Manning gets to test out Mike Shula's new offence. But they will be going against a solid Jets' secondary. Bowles' boys will push a bit harder and the Giants won't want to endanger their fragile offensive pieces.
Journeyman Josh McCown will lead the Jets on offence and while he won't have sexy players to help him out, the likes of Bilal Powell (RB) and Jermaine Kearse (WR) are dependable players.
Darnold may get to play but he's listed third on the depth chart behind Teddy Bridgewater. If he plays, it'll be when the second units come out. Either way, the Jets will play harder in this game and that's the deciding factor here.