Their quarterback is so green that he struggles to read the most basic blitzes. Their offensive line is down three starters and likely will have to play its fourth-string right tackle. Their secondary is missing two starters, including the guy who runs the show.
Yes, the New York Jets could be in serious trouble Saturday night against the Miami Dolphins. If coach Todd Bowles figures out a way to win this game, he’d deserve a public vote of confidence from owner Woody Johnson — and a nice Christmas bonus, too.
The game means everything to the contending Dolphins (8-5) and nothing to the Jets (4-9), so would anybody be shocked if this turns into another prime-time laugher? Not me.
Five thoughts on the game, which kicks off at 8:25 p.m. at MetLife Stadium:
The Jets were charmed last season with injuries — only 19 games-lost among the starters. This season, they’re guaranteed to have a minimum of 75 games lost. The loss of safety Marcus Gilchrist (season-ending knee injury) hurts the defense because he calls the signals for the secondary.
The offensive line has absorbed some huge hits. In fact, the projected line in the spring — Ryan Clady, James Carpenter, Nick Mangold, Brian Winters and Breno Giacomini — hasn’t played a single snap together. And won’t.
“Bad luck,” Bowles said.
Welcome Matt: Replacing the injured Ryan Tannehill (knee), Matt Moore will come out of mothballs to make his first start since the 2011 finale. Remember that game? You should. It came against the Jets on the day of the infamous Santonio Holmes meltdown. Moore is a cagey veteran who came off the bench in 2012 to beat the Jets at MetLife. He likes to take chances and the Jets think he’s prone to interceptions. We’ll see.
First-quarter blues: The Jets have fallen behind, 14-0, in each of the last two games. The 49ers scored touchdowns on their second and sixth plays, the Indianapolis Colts the seventh and 11th. Bowles can spin it any way he wants, but the slow starts shine a harsh light on the preparation. For a change, how ’bout an early lead?