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The Patriots put the capper on a wild week with a 30-14 win over the Jets in front of a sun-splashed sold-out crowd in Foxborough.
Tom Brady went 28-for-42 for 306 yards and a pair of touchdown passes to help carry New England. The Patriots also got rushing touchdowns from Sony Michel and Rex Burkhead to push to 3-0 on the year.
The woeful Jets struggled to gain any sort of offensive traction all day, and while New England’s touchdown-free streak ended -- New York got a pick-six from Jamal Adams and jumped on a muffed punt from Gunner Olszewski -- it’s important to note that neither one of the touchdowns came at the expense of the defense, which has now not allowed a touchdown in 16 straight quarters.
Putting the Antonio Brown saga behind them, the Patriots came out smoking in the early going, as Michel and Phillip Dorsett put up first-quarter scores for New England. The Pats pushed it to 20-0 at the half behind a second-quarter touchdown pass from Brady to Julian Edelman (7 receptions, 62yards).
Edelman left in the third quarter and didn’t return because of a chest injury, but that was more than enough for the New England defense, as they stymied the Jets all afternoon. Josh Gordon put the exclamation point on the Patriots’ win with a pair of really nice catches, as he finished with seven catches for 62 yards.
3:55 p.m.: We’re at the two-minute warning, with the Patriots holding a 30-14 lead. Early story? New England puts the capper on a wild week with a relatively easy win over the Jets. Keeping an eye on the health of Edelman and Gordon, but all in all, a good week that included some good red-zone work. Questions about the kicking game, but New England is likely happy to be at 3-0.
3:45 p.m.: Brady back in the game. If you want to draw 2007 comparisons, this also happened with the ‘07 team -- the Pats were blowing out the Dolphins in October, they went to Matt Cassel, he struggled, and Brady came back into the contest.
3:42 p.m.: So the Jets get their second score of the day, this one on a pick-six by Jamal Adams. Stidham just air-mailed it over the head of Brandon Bolden, and the defensive back took it all the way to the house. Not a great throw for the backup, and it means another seven for the Jets. It’s 30-14 with 6:23 to go in the game. That 23-point spread is in danger.
3:39 p.m.: Stidham in for Brady with just under 10 minutes to go. QB1 finishes 27-for-40 for 300 yards with a pair of touchdowns.
3:36 p.m.: Patriots are going to get the ball back here with 8:41 to go and a 30-7 lead. It’s probably too early to be dredging up these numbers, but what the heck -- New England’s point differential through the first 3 games of the 2007 season was 114-35 (plus-79). Through two-plus games, the 2019 Patriots are 106-10 (plus-96).
3:30 p.m.: The Patriots announce Julian Edelman (chest) will not return and Adam Butler (leg) is questionable. Gut feeling is Butler won’t be back either.
3:27 p.m.: Patriots punt it away again here with 12 minutes to go in regulation, holding a 30-7 lead. For what it’s worth, the latest line had New England as a 23-point favorite. Maybe the only real drama left in this one.
3:20 p.m.: Gunner Olszewski muffs a punt, and it ends with a touchdown by the Jets. First TD of the year allowed by New England. Technically, that one was on special teams and not the defense, but a score is a score -- so much for the shutout streak. 30-7 at the end of the third quarter.
3:08 p.m.: Patriots spreading things out on that last drive, in part because of injury. Nice sequence though, one that included that dynamite catch by Gordon to get Nrew England inside the New York red zone. One of the things they fiocused on this week -- and something you’ll hear them talk about after the game, undoubtedly -- was the offensive red-zone focus over the course of the week. You consider the opponent, but they have to be encouraged by the level of red-zone execution today. Good improvement.
3:04 p.m.: That catch by Gordon to set up the first and goal was a beautiful thing. Best reception of the season.
3:01 p.m.: At the end of the third quarter here, this is a really good chance for some backup guys to get quality reps on the offensive side of the ball and understand what it’s like to work together as a unit. Meyers with a good catch here that gets the Patriots closer to the New York red zone. Dorsett with a good catch, Burkhead getting more and more work. New England is up 23-0 with 5:19 to go in the quarter, and is on the move again.
2:48 p.m.: Looks like Gordon got his finger jammed there on that facemask call. Patriots settle for a field goal after the Devin McCourty pick to make it 23-0 with 8:49 left in the third. Going to be interesting to see how the New England passong game operates the rest of the way with no Edelman, no James White, and Gordon dealing with some health issues. (He’s on the sifdelines, riding a bike to stay loose while wearing a helmet. A good sign.)
2:38 p.m.: As the third quarter gets underway, Edelman (chest) is questionable to return. Gordon is on the field. Little need to risk Edelman in the second half of this one.
2:23 p.m.: Halftime stats:
Brady is 19-for-28 for 199 yards and 2 TDs.
Edelman: 7 catches, 10 targets, 62 yards, 1 TD.
Burkhead: 3 carries, 12 yards.
Patriots up 20-0, will get the ball to start the second half.
Couple of things worth monitoring...
• Edelman was shaken up at the end of the first half, and instead of taking him to the tent, just took him to the locker room. Made sense, but we’ll keep an eye on him at the start of the third. And Gordon also went down on that last offensive drive, and was taken to the tent before the end of the quarter. Another situation worth monitoring.
• In terms of analysis, other than a missed extra point and some general offensive sloppiness there at the end of the first half, it’s been all Patriots. The only drama is whether or not they’ll keep their touchdown-free streak alive. My guess is yes, but we will see.
2:14 p.m.: Patriots will get the ball back with just over two minutes left in the first half. They’ll get the ball to start the second half. Aiming for that wraparound score here. Patriots’ opponents are now 5-for-33 on third down this season.
2:10 p.m.: Two straight series end with punts here for the Patriots. Little sloppy (it’s all relative, of course), but New England holds a 20-0 lead with just over four minutes left in the first half. Brady is 17-for-24 for 189 yards and a pair of touchdowns to this point.
2:03 p.m.: I applaud the Jets for trying to run the Wildcat this afternoon. You have to try and think outside the box here if you are the Jets. You’re not going to win today using conventional methods -- you have to be aggressive and a little out there. Not sure if it’ll work, but that’s the hand you have been dealt. That being said, New York punts it away again, and the Patriots will get the ball back with 7:10 left in the first half with a 20-0 lead.
1:55 p.m.: Oh, man. Leonard Williams with a hands to the face call gives the Patriots a first down after that third and 16. The defintion of a rough afternoon for New York, and the New England offense keeps rolling.
1:50 p.m.: The New England defense has done well limiting Bell so far this afternoon. I mean, he’s their best offensive weapon, so it makes sense to key on him, but to hold Bell to 13 yards on seven carries here in a quarter-plus will make the defensive coaches happy. The Jets have to punt it away again -- the Patriots are up 20-0 with 11:31 to go in the first half. Other than the missed extra point, it’s been all New England to this point on the afternoon. Absolutely dominant.
1:43 p.m.: The first touchdown catch of the year for Edelman, and successful extra point makes it 20-0 early in the second quarter, and the New England offense is clicking -- another sharp sequence that goes 10 plays and takes 59 yards, and is capped off by the Edelman reception.
1:28 p.m.: Another excellent drive for the New England offense, one that ends with a Brady-to-Dorsett touchdown pass that (with the extra point) makes it 13-0 with just over four minutes to go. Feels like things have gotten away from the Jets here, who have to answer if they want to have any chance of staying in this one. That TD pass from Brady was the 523rd of his career, which moves him out of a tie with Drew Brees for second place on the all-time list and just beyond Peyton Manning.
1:18 p.m.: Really sharp looking opening drive for New England, as Brady leads a nine-play, 88-yard sequence that was highlighted by a 41-yard catch and run from Izzo, a nice play for the Pats. Michel plunges over for the score -- nice way to finish a drive for a team that has occasionally struggled in the red zone in the first two weeks. A MISSED extra point for Gostkowski put a damper on things, however. It’s 6-0 with 7:55 left in the first quarter. Bottom line? There’s a lot to like about the state of this team, but there are plenty of questions about the New England kicking game.
1:12 p.m.: Patriots defensive starters: Van Noy, Guy, Shelton, Simon, Hightower, Collins, Gilmore, J. McCourty, Jones, Chung, D. McCourty
Offensive starters: Brady, Burkhead, Bolden, Edelman, Gordon, Izzo, Newhouse, Thuney, Karras, Mason, Cannon.
1:07 p.m.: Expect a heavy dose of Le’Veon Bell all afternoon -- saw him in the Wildcat there on that first drive for the Jets. New York has to punt it away after not picking up that third down. New England opponents are now 5-for-28 on the season on third down against that defense.
12:59 p.m.: For those of you watching at home, this is the second Harlan/Gannon game since the start of the 2017 season. Patriots are 1-0 in those games.
Patriots offensive line in warmups is: Newhouse-Thuney-Karras-Mason-Cannon— Nora Princiotti (@NoraPrinciotti) September 22, 2019
11:59 a.m.: Oh, and for every woeful Tennessee football performance this year, I’m going to keep beating the drum for the Vols to put in a call to Jerod Mayo at the end of the season to see if he’d be interested in coaching his alma mater in 2020.
11:40 a.m.: A few interesting notes on the inactives, and some other stuff.
As Ben Volin notes, the Patriots will be going with just seven offensive linemen today. Usually, they have eight or (sometimes) more. Cannon is good to go, which is encouraging, but if there’s an injury or health issue, I’d imagine they’d end up leaning an awful lot on Thuney, who can play multiple positions. But it’s something worth watching if there is a problem.
Joejuan Williams and Damien Harris are getting their first action of the year today. Same for Jakob Johnson, who has a terrific story. Can’t imagine what it’s like for them knowing you’ll setp on the field for the first time as an NFL player. Good stuff.
Demaryius Thomas is inactive today for the Jets. No revenege game there.
No LaCosse or Develin means the run game might take a bit of a hit. I’d adjust expectations accordingly, even against the Jets.
Last line I saw had the game as a 23-point spread. Sounds about right. Still don’t think the Pats allow a touchdown, bur we shall see. I’m sticking with my prediction from Friday morning -- 30-6, New England.
11:09 a.m.: We know one of the inactives already, as it sounds like James White is going to miss Sunday’s game.
11 a.m.: Good morning, and welcome back to football! Keep it here all day for the latest updates on the Patriots and Jets. The inactives will be announced at 11:30 a.m. In the meantime, we’ll kick things off with our pregame reading list. When you’re done with that, feel free to jump into the comments and fire up some talk about the game.