On Thanksgiving night the New York Jets were apparently in a very giving mood as they had five total giveaways and gave up 49 points in losing to the New England Patriots by 30. The win would give Bill Belichick his 200th career coaching victory, which had to be somewhat sweeter against the rival Jets.
The New York Jets won the toss and deferred until the second half. Muhammad Wilkerson wrapped up Tom Brady on first play causing an intentional grounding call. The Patriots went three and out, but on Jets first play Dont'a Hightower sacked Mark Sanchez. The Jets also punted and Patriots drove down to give Stephen Gostkowski a 39-yard attempt that he missed. Shonn Greene ran to get the Jets to the 47 yard line after the miss. Then Sanchez found Jeff Cumberland for a first down to the 35 yard line. Greene rushed for three more then caught a pass for six. Bilal Powell ran for four more and a first down, but then Sanchez was intercepted by Steve Gregory. The Jets defense had a couple of nice plays when LaRon Landry batted down as pass intended for Wes Welker and Bart Scott lowered the boom on Stevan Ridley.
Brady hit Welker in the front corner of end zone for a touchdown as Ellis Lankster didn't concentrate his coverage on Welker for the entire route. Joe McKnight returned the kickoff to the 34 yard line then it was the Bilal Powell show, running for four, then a pass play for a first down. Then Powell ran for five more, another two, then enough for a first down. Powell ran for three more, then Jeff Cumberland on a pass play for five, and Powell got one more, but Greene was stopped. Greene fumbled the ball over the line and Gregory recovered for Patriots. Brady found Shane Vereen open along sideline and he proceeded to outpace Bart Scott and the rest of the defense for an 83-yard touchdown. Sanchez found Clyde Gates on a slant for first down, then the comedy of errors began. Vince Wilfork pushed Brandon Moore back into Mark Sanchez on a busted play, Sanchez fumbled and Gregory ran it in for another touchdown. On the kickoff return McKnight was hit and fumbled into the air and waiting arms of Julian Edelman who ran it in for yet another score in less than a minute. Later in the quarter, Brady lofted a nice pass to Edelman who beat Landry and scored to put the Patriots up 35-0. The Jets salvaged something before the half with a 32-yard Nick Folk field goal.
Muhammad Wilkerson returned after going out mid-way into second quarter. On an end around Landry separated the ball from Edelman and Eric Smith recovered. The Jets drove and went for it on fourth and goal only to be stopped at the one yard line. On the next play, Ridley was called for a chop block on Demario Davis in the end zone that resulted in a safety for the Jets. After the free kick the drive got started with a big pass play to Cumberland for 39 yards. Then Bilal Powell for 14 yards more after he ran over his would-be tackler around the first down line. They would get to eight yard line on a slant pass to Jeremy Kerley. Powell capped it with a four yard touchdown run after a defensive holding penalty on the Patriots.
On the subsequent Patriots drive that started in the third quarter, the Patriots scored when Brady was able to sneak it across on second and goal. Sanchez found Schilens on a nice pass play that Alfonzo Dennard knocked out and Rob Ninkovich recovered. Brady completed a pass to Welker inside the ten yard line, then Ridley ran it in untouched for the score. With under four minutes left in the game the Jets got the ball back and drove for a final score that started with a long pass play to Kerley in the middle of the field. Several plays later the touchdown pass went to Dustin Keller in the back of the end zone.
During the second quarter the tryptophan from eating turkey apparently kicked in for the Jets as they would go from being down seven to down 32 by halftime. The only hope at this point is winning out the remaining five games and with some luck hoping other bubble teams lose to give the Jets any tiebreakers. Its very doubtful that that will occur so it's time to give younger players and other reserves more playing time to see who can contribute next season.
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