After a brutal four-game losing streak, the Patriots finally snapped out of their funk and defeated the New York Jets in walk-off fashion Monday night. This was the best offensive showing we’ve seen from New England since Week 3 against the Raiders, as Cam Newton and company were firing on all cylinders. The Pats’ were able to put up their second-most points of the season, providing a spark that the team desperately needed. Unfortunately, the same cannot be said for the defense, which is why the Jets were even in this game in the first place. Here are a few of my thoughts on the win:
Newton produced his sharpest outing as a Patriot Monday night, completing 27/35 passes for 274 yards and scoring twice on the ground. After a lengthy stretch of disappointing games that cast doubt on his arm, “Super Cam” came out firing with accuracy and efficiency against the Jets. This was a statement performance for him and the rest of New England’s offense, and it will hopefully be a turning point for their season.
Meyers had a career day on Monday, racking up 12 catches for 169 yards. He’s been Cam Newton’s go-to target for the past three games and finally exploded against a weak Jets secondary. It’s sad to say, but Meyers is everything Patriots fans wanted N’Keal Harry to be. The undrafted rookie is a great route runner and excels at creating separation. At this rate, he’s going to be a staple of New England’s offense for years to come.
After an uninspiring start to the season, Folk came through in the clutch for the Patriots on Monday, hitting a 51-yard walk-off field goal to clinch the game. He may not be Stephen Gostkowski, but Folk certainly looked like him this week. It appears New England may just have a reliable kicker for the rest of the season.
Photo credit: Corey Sipkin/AP
Jackson is lucky he came up with a clutch fourth-quarter interception. Otherwise, I’d dedicate the entire down section to him. He single-handedly allowed two touchdowns, as Breshad Perriman burned him on both plays. While J.C. does lead the NFL in interceptions, this was by far his worst performance of the season, and likely one he’ll want to forget.
Jackson was just part of the problem Monday night, as the Patriots defense was abused by 35-year-old Joe Flacco and the worst team in the league. The defense picked things up in the second half to close the gap for a comeback but they still allowed 20 first-half points–14 of which came on deep-ball touchdowns. This, along with the poor run defense, has been the Patriots’ Achilles heel throughout the year.
Photo credit: Corey Sipkin/AP
This was a must-win game for New England as Bill Belichick and company hope to salvage their season. At 3-5, an uphill battle awaits them as Buffalo (7-2) and Miami (5-3) currently hold a significant lead for the top two spots in the AFC East. It may seem like an insurmountable lead but If there’s one thing we’ve learned over the past 20 years, it’s to never count the Patriots out.
Next up: New England hosts the Baltimore Ravens on Sunday night at 8:20 P.M. (ET)
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