Patriots Week Six Recap

Max Davis, Contributing Writer

The New England Patriots marched into East Rutherford this Sunday with the intent to dominate the 3-2 New York Jets. The 1:00 PM game was scheduled to be a blowout by all accounts. The weather was warm and cloudy on the field with moderate winds during parts of the game.

The Jets were riding a three-game winning streak behind their quarterback, Josh McCown. Despite negative predictions, McCown has been having a great season. The Jets’ defense has been solid all year and is one of the main reasons they were able to win the past couple of weeks.

The Patriots were without cornerbacks (CB) Stephon Gilmore and Eric Rowe this week, and it showed. McCown exploited the secondary and led the Jets to a 14-0 lead. The Patriots responded two minutes later. Near the end of the first, they capitalized on a Malcolm Butler interception with a one-yard pass to Rob Gronkowski. The score at the half was tied up at 14-14.

The Patriots picked up where they left off in the first half with a touchdown to start the third quarter. CB/Safety Devin McCourty then picked off a McCown pass which led to a 28-yard Patriots field goal. The Jets quickly muscled their way to the Patriots red-zone where their drive ended after a fumble* by tight end (TE) Austin Seferian-Jenkins. After a quick Patriots drive, the Jets scored a field goal to put them within one score of the Patriots. But when the Jets got the ball again and brought it into Patriots territory, they turned the ball over on downs. The Patriots won the game 24-17 in a hard-fought week six victory to improve to 4-2.

*About the fumble call:

The referee, Tony Corrente, said that Jets’ TE Austin Seferian-Jenkins lost the ball mid-flight and that he then had to survive a hit to the ground with the ball. Because he did not recover control of the ball when he hit the ground, it was called a fumble. A fumble into the end zone causes a change in possession and a touchback. The Patriots received the ball on their 25-yard line following the play.

Things to note:

  • Tom Brady has already racked up 1,959 yards over only six games and leads the NFL in passing yards, as well as thirteen touchdowns and only two interceptions.
  • The struggling Patriots offensive line did not allow any sacks in week six. They also propelled the three Patriots running backs to 4.4, 4.7, and 7.7 yards per carry.
  • The Patriots only had six penalties all game, which is a substantial improvement from the twelve they had last week.
  • The Patriots defense had an ineffective pass rush all day despite recording four sacks and ten quarterback hits. They seemed to rush only three people very often, giving Josh McCown a lot of time to hang in the pocket.
  • The run defense found success as the two main running backs from the Jets, Matt Forte and Elijah McGuire, combined for only 44 yards on 19 carries.
  • Patriots running back Mike Gillislee fumbled for the first time all season, and the second time in his entire career.
  • Rob Gronkowski showed no signs that he was injured last week and dropped 6-83-2 on the Jets secondary on ten targets.

Next week:

The Patriots have a Super Bowl rematch against the Atlanta Falcons at Gillette Stadium on Sunday, October 22nd, at 8:30 PM. The Falcons’ most recent game was a loss against the Miami Dolphins in which they blew a 17-point lead. This does not bode well for the Falcons, as they also blew a 25-point lead in Super Bowl LI against the Patriots. The Patriots will get their missing players back next week and hope to stop the offensive weapons in the Atlanta receiving corps. Both teams seem to be weaker than they were last year, both offensively and defensively. Atlanta has lost their last two games against AFC East opponents and this trend should continue on Sunday Night Football at Gillette Stadium.