The New York Jets turned last night's game against the New England Patriots at Gillette Stadium into exactly the type of game they wanted: low-scoring, ugly with a time of possession greatly favoring the Jets. It ended up being a one possession game heading into the fourth quarter, but the Jets ultimately could not overcome the comical number of drops by their receivers and three interceptions from Geno Smith.
The New York Jets are built to grind out games. They did just that last night and scrapped their way to a three-point deficit entering the fourth quarter. Both teams had issues with drops last night, many coming before the heavy rain became a factor. Geno Smith threw three interceptions, including the pass that effectively sealed the game and led to Nick Mangold's late hit, which resulted in the ejections of D'Brickashaw Ferguson and Willie Colon.
The New England Patriots scored on their first drive, capped by a 39-yard touchdown pass from Tom Brady to Aaron Dobson. After the team traded punts, Devin McCourty returned a Stephen Hill fumble to the Jets' 8 yard line. The Jets held the Patriots to a field goal and a 10-0 lead. Geno Smith responded with a drive that stalled inside the New England 10, and eventually resulted in a 37-yard field goal from Nick Folk after a holding call on the first attempt.
The Patriots tacked on a field goal in the second quarter that pushed their lead to 13-3 at halftime. The opening possession of the second half for each team resulted in alternating punts, with the Jets at their own 42 yard line. A nine-play drive resulted in a three-yard touchdown run by Bilal Powell. The Jets trailed 13-10 with 5:05 left in the third quarter.
Bilal Powell's touchdown run was the final score of the night. Both teams struggled with drops and Geno Smith threw three interceptions in the fourth quarter. The first one was on a third down at the New England 27 yard line. The final two interception were in Jets territory.
Suffice to say it wasn't pretty, but that's the type of game the Jets want to play against the Patriots. The team needs to clean up the turnovers and drops, but the game took on the style of play the Jets want to force on their opponents. New England came away with the win, but the Jets controlled the pace of the game. There's no such thing as a moral victory in the NFL, but the Jets can take their ability to control the pace of the game as a positive moving forward.
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