top of page

Patriots Look to Sweep the Jets Seven Years Straight

The Patriots and Jets both entered their bye with wins just a week after their first matchup of the season. Now coming off the bye at the same time, their second matchup of 2022 becomes even bigger than the first. For the Jets, simply winning would give them sole possession of first place in the AFC East. The Patriots meanwhile can take second in the division with a win and Bills loss, putting themselves one game back of the Dolphins. Now with a week off to hopefully square away some clear issues, how do the Patriots look as they begin the second half of the year?


Game Info

Date: Sunday, November 6th

Start Time: 1:00 EST

Location: Foxborough Massachusetts

Stadium: Gillette Stadium

TV Info: CBS (Kevin Harlan and Trent Green on the call)

Uniform Info: Blue Jerseys, Blue Pants


New York Jets

Defense

The last time the Jets played back in Week 9, they held Josh Allen and the Buffalo Bills to their lowest points total of the season, 17. Furthermore, this defense was spectacular upfront, pressuring Josh Allen a whopping 17 times with five sacks, while forcing a passer rating of 39.6 under pressure. That is nothing short of elite, especially when you consider that the Jets, both in this game and in general, can get pressure consistently without blitzing. Theo Ash pointed this out in a video about a week ago, but the Jets lead the league in sacks (25) and pressures (127) when sending either three or four pass rushers. Got to give credit where it’s due to Quinnen Williams, Carl Lawson, etc, upfront for New York.

Things in coverage for New York didn’t start out great, with Sauce Gardner getting beat badly on a double move by Stefon Diggs for 42 yards. A bad start especially considering the botched opening kickoff by the Jets just seconds earlier. After that, the Jets started to make things happen in the secondary. Two plays after that Diggs chunk play, Allen threw a brutal pick to Jordan Whitehead, who blew up a throw in the flat to Dawson Knox. Sauce Gardner got a pick later as well on a brutal throw by Allen. On the day, the MVP candidate was held to barely over 200 yards passing, giving him fits in zone coverage. If not for an ill-timed 36-yard touchdown run for Allen, this would have been about as good a defensive performance by any team all season.

Now looking back at the Patriots and Jets Week 7 matchup, there wasn’t much different on the Jets' end of things. They consistently got pressure rushing four or less, found success in zone defense, and in both cases held the opposing QBs to similar days passing-wise. So, what was ultimately the difference between those two games? The running attack. It’s no secret that the Bills running back room is subpar compared to the rest of the league. The Jets held Devin Singletary and James Cook to 12 carries for 39 yards (3.25 YPC). New England meanwhile ran 31 times and 108 yards (3.48 YPC) with Rhamondre Stevenson and Damien Harris. Not a huge difference in yards per carry, but the Patriots stayed committed to the run game, which could be a blueprint again this Sunday.


Offense

Starting under center, Zach Wilson was by no means great against the Bills but was infinitely better than he was against the Patriots. He threw zero interceptions and was far more efficient with the ball, going 18/25 for 154 yards. Also helping the cause was the fact he was only sacked twice compared to Allen who went down five times. Another credit to Wilson was getting the ball in the hands of rookie wideout Garrett Wilson eight out of nine times. Between his last two games, the rookie out of Ohio State is averaging seven catches for 103.5 yards, going up against two elite defenses. Meanwhile, Elijah Moore remains a non-factor for the Jets offensively, getting just one target and no catches over his last three outings.

Former Jacksonville Jaguar James Robinson saw his first major workload since getting traded and had an even split of carries with Michael Carter against Buffalo. Only 13 carries with moderate production for the former UDFA, but nearly three times the carries he saw in Week 7. However, Robinson did get a receiving touchdown in his second game in New York. Carter meanwhile had a great game for himself two weeks ago. Running a dozen times for 76 yards and a score. It will be interesting to see how the carries are distributed this Sunday with that in mind. The Jets were effectively neutralized on the ground the first go around. However, their offensive line will be in much better shape this go around.


New England Patriots

Defense

It’s hard to say the narrative surrounding Zach Wilson’s struggles against the Patriots isn’t based in fact. Especially after his abysmal performance just weeks ago. Although he did hit some chunk plays in the first matchup of this season, which this Patriots' defense needs to shore up, this New England defense has given the second-year quarterback hell. Taking last year’s Patriots-Jets game out of the equation (Wilson left with a first-half knee injury) this is what the Patriots have done defensively in two full games: Seven interceptions, six sacks, an average passer rating of 50.8, an average completion percentage of 53.1, and two touchdowns. Wilson can of course get better, but the bottom line is he has been put in the Steiner Recliner by the Patriots 2.5 times in his career so far. Give full credit to the core Patriots defenders for that.

One storyline that specifically bears watching in the second half of this Patriots season is the play of Matt Judon. Yes, he’s been outstanding in every sense of the word in 2022 but remember what happened last year. In his final eight games a season ago, Red Sleeves had just 3.5 sacks and went his final four games with none. In general, the Patriots' sack production took a nosedive on the back nine a year ago as well. Hard to say if this will happen two seasons in a row but is worthy of keeping tabs on.

How the Patriots' run defense holds up as we inch closer to December is another thing to look out for. For the most part, New England has done very well up front, specifically in Cleveland where they bottled up Nick Chubb. On the flip side, the Chicago Bears' boat raced the Patriots on the ground to the tune of 243 yards. That also doesn’t even get to the Ravens and Packers both ending up shy of 200 yards rushing earlier in the year as well. An obstacle that New England will have to overcome for the short term is the continued absence of Christian Barmore. The second-year defensive tackle was just put on IR on Friday evening, meaning the earliest he would be coming back is Week 15.


Offense

It’s no secret that this Patriots offense has some issues. That became crystal clear during Bill Belichick’s bye week presser where he went into depth about both the Jets and Colts being able to easily pick up on plays pre-snap. Specifically mentioned were Shaq Leonard and C.J. Mosley, and Belichick went as far as saying “It looked like [Mosley] almost heard the play in the huddle” regarding the latter. That second part if true would fall on Mac Jones, but you could also chalk this up to Matt Patricia being a predictable play caller. Worse than that is that last time out against the Colts, he had a brutal game plan set up, and if not for a spectacular defensive performance, would look even worse.


Andrew Callaghan pointed this out the day after the game, but Patricia dialed up run plays on 8 of the Patriots' first 11 first downplays. The problem for those wondering is that the Colts entered as the No. 6 DVOA run defense in football two weeks ago. I also mentioned that Hunter Henry and/or Jonnu Smith could be breakout candidates due to the Colts' issues against 12 personnel. Patricia opted to run out a 12 look on just 13 percent of their plays (before their final drive). Even worse was that the two players responsible for their best pass plays? Jonnu Smith and Hunter Henry. Simply a gross misuse of two big-ticket free-agent tight ends.


Another thing that would help is some production on the outside from someone not named Jakobi Meyers. DeVante Parker should be back this weekend but getting Tyquan Thornton more involved in a Mac Jones-led offense would be good. He was targeted four times against Indianapolis to be fair but getting him some touches in motion could be huge. We saw that clear as day against the Browns earlier in the year.


One thing that can only help the Patriots is that they have David Andrews back in the mix on the offensive front. Don’t think it’s a coincidence that Cole Strange’s recent struggles have coincided with his absence. Getting Andrews back should shore things up in the middle of the line, and at a good time as well. A loss for this weekend however will likely come in the form of punter Jake Bailey. As of Friday afternoon, he was listed as doubtful, which likely means Michael Palardy will be in for this game. Given Bailey’s struggles this year, I wonder if Belichick would make a switch should Parlardy perform well.




Betting Odds:

Points Spread: NE -3.5 (-105) | NYJ +3.5 (-115)

Moneyline: NE (-176) | NYJ (+148)

Over/Under: O 38.5 (-110) | U 38.5 (-110)


Short and sweet betting section this week. The under has hit in four consecutive games for the Jets, while also hitting in three of the last five games for the Patriots. Which is exactly why I would say the over is the play here. More of a gut feeling if anything, that pendulum is going to swing for both teams eventually, what better time than now? As for the money line and spread, it’s hard to make a good case for the Jets. Their last win in Foxborough was in 2008 in a Thursday Night overtime game. Combining that with Zach Wilson’s struggles against the Belichick defense, the Patriots outright and ATS is worth feeling cautiously optimistic about.


Prediction:

No need to stress the importance of this game for both teams. New York getting the mental edge of potentially leading the AFC East 10 weeks in could be gigantic. They also have a chip on their shoulder after the Week 7 loss to the Patriots. Then again, they said the same thing about the Foxborough loss in 2021 before that game as well and they still made mistake after mistake. Could the Jets win this game? Absolutely, they have the defense to compete with any team in the league right now, they are that good.


With that in mind, I don’t believe Zach Wilson is going to do what’s necessary to win. And by that, I mean limiting turnovers and simply making smart decisions with the ball. Combining that with where the Jets' running game is at without Breece Hall, their outlook is suboptimal this Sunday, potentially set to lose their 14th consecutive game to the Patriots.


Final Score: New England Patriots 27, New York Jets 17

26 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All

Comments


bottom of page