The New England Patriots take on the New York Jets at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey. The game is scheduled to kickoff at 1:00 PM. ET.
Last week, the Patriots dominated the Titans by a score of 33-16. The victory clinched the AFC East title for New England for the seventh consecutive season. Against the Titans, Tom Brady threw for 267 yards, two touchdowns, and zero interceptions. Brady avoided pressure for most of the day, but the offensive line did give up two sacks on the afternoon. Brady has been under constant pressure this season. The amount of punishment in the pocket that Brady takes is an area to monitor going into the final two weeks of the regular season.
The New York Jets saw their playoff hopes take a hit when the Steelers beat the Broncos. The Steelers now own the sixth seed in the AFC while the 9-5 Jets are on the outside looking in. The Steelers’ late season surge should have every team in the AFC playoff race worried, especially New York. The Jets finish the year against two of their division rivals. If the Jets have any hope of making the playoffs they’ll need to win out the remainder of the season.
Against the Cowboys, the Jets defense forced four turnovers. The Jets defensive line got after Matt Cassel early. Cassel threw one interception before being replaced by Kellen Moore. Coming off the bench, Moore threw three interceptions and looked completely confused in the pocket.
A player to watch for the Jets this week is Chris Ivory. In the Jets’ first meeting with the Patriots, Ivory had 41 yards on 17 carries. The Jets rely heavily on their defense to win them games. Their offense has played better the last few games; but the Patriots’ offense, despite the rash of injuries, is a force to reckon with. Against a solid Patriots defense, the Jets will need to sustain drives and keep Tom Brady and the Patriots offense off the field an on the sideline.
The Jets best weapon this season is arguably not Brandon Marshall, but Eric Dekker. At the very least the two receivers complement each other well. Dekker has had success against the Patriots. His size creates an advantage against New England’s athletic but smaller secondary. Regardless of how well Marshall or Dekker play, the Jets will need balance to win. Ivory is the key exploiting the Patriots defense.
A player to watch for the Patriots this week is James White. The emergence of James White perfectly fits the mold of the Patriots’ “next man up philosophy.” Against the Titans, White had 71 yards receiving on seven receptions. He had one touchdown on the afternoon. White had the second most targets in week 15 with eight. Without the likes of Julian Edelman and a fully healthy Danny Amendola, the Patriots offense goes almost exclusively through Gronk. However, Gronk is not without injury and the Patriots will want to protect the best weapon down the stretch. Outside of Gronk, the Patriots don’t have a more reliable weapon right now than White. Going into the final two weeks of the season look for Whites role in the offense to continue to produce.
Jets Vs Patriots Betting Lines
This game is crucial for both the Jets and the Patriots. The Patriots won’t likely rest players with a chance to seriously impact a division rivals’ playoff chances. The Jets must win if they have any shot at making a playoff run. The Patriots won’t rest Brady and Gronk, and as long as they’re out there, the Patriots will find a way to win it on the road.
Play: Patriots -3