EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. - The good news is the Jets really have no choice but to play most of their starters in their preseason opener. Or maybe that's the bad news given the low expectations for this team.
But Jets GM Mike Maccagnan and coach Todd Bowles have promised competition all summer long for almost every job on the roster, and the competition begins for real against the Tennessee Titans at the Meadowlands on Saturday night. Not all jobs are up for grabs, of course, but quite a few are.
Here's an inside look at some of the battles and 10 intriguing players to watch:
Christian Hackenberg - It's the Summer of Hack, or at least it should be. The Jets will be taking a long look at last year's second-round pick to see if he's improved and how close he is to being ready. They need to determine when - not if - to give him the starting quarterback job.
Robby Anderson - The second-year receiver who played OK as the No. 3 receiver last year is now the Jets' No. 1 receiver thanks to the Quincy Enunwa injury. He's had issues with drops in training camp and there's no way the Jets are truly comfortable with him in this role. He needs to prove his worth.
Austin Seferian-Jenkins - One of the best stories of training camp has been how he's turned around his life and maybe his career. He's been a frequent target in passing and team drills all summer and proven reliable. Could the tight end spot really be part of the Jets' attack this season? Maybe a big part, depending on how ASJ does in actual games.
Marcus Maye - Jamal Adams, the Jets' first-round pick, gets most of the press, but Maye, the safety the Jets took in Round 2, has looked just as good all summer long. Adams will likely miss this game with an ankle injury, so it could be Maye's turn in the spotlight. Keep an eye on how polished and aggressive this rookie is.
Morris Claiborne - Everyone knows him as a former Cowboys bust, but the cornerback has looked pretty good in training camp and still seems to have the talent to revive his career if he stays healthy. He may not be Darrelle Revis in his prime, but he seems like he's an upgrade over the Revis of last season.
Kelvin Beachum - The Jets are trying to make this reclamation project their left tackle and the early returns are good. His performance could be a key in what might be a better-than-you-think Jets offensive line.
Chris Harper - The Jets' receiving corps is wide open, especially behind Robby Anderson. Harper has been outstanding for most of the summer. Jalin Marshall is still ahead of him on the depth chart, but he's suspended for the first four regular season games, and the two rookies (Chad Hansen, ArDarius Stewart) seem to be lagging behind too. A strong preseason could land Harper the No. 2 spot.
Juston Burris - One of defensive coordinator Kacy Rodgers' takeaways from last season was that this promising young cornerback should've played more last season. The Jets like him a lot and will take a long, hard look at him all preseason long.
Elijah McGuire - With Bilal Powell (neck) out and Matt Forte (hamstring) probably out, this sixth-round running back could get a huge workload in his first NFL game. Destined to be the third back on the depth chart, he's had some good moments in camp. Some good moments in preseason will increase his chances of actually seeing regular-season snaps.
Dylan Donahue - In an absolutely wide-open competition at outside linebacker, this fifth-rounder is far down the depth chart. But he has a lot of energy, has created some havoc in practices, and he's a favorite of outside linebackers coach Kevin Greene. The big question for him: He played defensive end at Division II West Georgia, so can he really become an NFL linebacker this fast?