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Monday, September 21, 2009
At least Fireman Ed is happy
The New York Jets are legit.
With Week 2 of the 2009 NFL season not yet complete, its best to steer clear of ESPN-style bone-headed grand statements. Still, after a 16-9 win over the New England Patriots yesterday at the Meadowlands, I think we know where the biggest challenger in the AFC East lies.
The Patriots (1-1) played well in the first half, especially defensively but they couldn't cash in on any of their three tries in the red zone. The 9-3 halftime lead for New England should have been more but it wasn't.
Stephen Gostkowski was the Pats' offensive player of the game and that's never a good thing. He hit field goals from 45 yards, 25 yards and 29 yards.
Jay Feely, the Jets' kicker, hit a 33-yard kick in the first half.
After looking terrible against our average (on a good day) defense in the first half, Jets rookie quarterback Vinnie Chase (aka Mark Sanchez) completed a 45-yard pass to Jerricho Cotchery (4 catches, 87 yards) on the first play of the second half.
A few plays later, Sanchez found tight end Dustin Keller in the back of the end zone for a 9-yard touchdown completion. Feely's kick gave New York a 10-9 lead that they wouldn't relinquish.
Wes Welker was a surprise scratch from the game but rookie receiver Julian Edelman (8 catches, 98 yards) did fine in his NFL debut. Jets stud cornerback Darrelle Revis (5 tackles, 1 INT) completely neutralized Randy Moss (4 catches, 24 yards).
For whatever reason, Tom Brady (23-for-47, 216 yards, 1 interception) and the rest of the offense have never looked in a rhythm so far in the first two games (save for the last five minutes vs. Buffalo).
Joey Galloway (5 catches, 53 yards) had a bunch of balls thrown his way yesterday but he never seemed to be on the same page as Brady.
Fred Taylor was the leading rusher for New England with 46 yards but its obvious that the offense needs more balance, at least until Brady, Randy Moss, Welker, etc. start firing on all cylinders.
After a Feely field goal in the third quarter and another in the fourth (giving New York a 16-9 lead), New England still had life as it forced a Jets punt.
His whole career and the freshest memory of all-the Buffalo game-completely obscures reality at this point with Brady as any comeback seems not only possible but a foregone conclusion. Not yesterday.
A fourth down pass to Galloway was incomplete and the Jets had picked up a big W after a week of running their mouths.
The Jets' defense is very solid and their blitz packages created constant pressure on Brady. He was never sacked (showing how overrated those are) but he could never get comfortable in the pocket.
Next week doesn't get any easier as the Atlanta Falcons (2-0), led by former BC star Matt Ryan, invade Gillette Stadium next Sunday afternoon.