The Jets beat the Patriots today at MetLife Stadium 26-20. When coupled with Pittsburgh's loss to Baltimore, the Jets enter the final week of the 2015 NFL regular season in control of their own destiny. With a win over Rex Ryan's Buffalo Bills next week, the Jets will earn a Playoff spot. Gang Green is now 10-5 on the season and rolling on a five game winning streak at the best possible time. Blowing a 14 point second half lead did not spell doom for the Jets. Let's talk about what happened below.
Brandon Marshall: Marshall had a huge positive impact for the Jets. He had 8 catches for 115 yards. He also registered a pair of touchdowns to stake the Jets to that big lead. He scored from 2 yards right before halftime and then made a brilliant adjustment on a ball thrown into double coverage on a 33 yarder in the third quarter. He added a huge 20 yarder in overtime to set up the game-winning touchdown.
Eric Decker: Decker was awfully quiet until late in the game. He had a big 16 yard reception on the last drive of regulation. Even though the Jets did not ultimately score, it flipped field position at a point where the Jets were in danger of giving Tom Brady the ball back dangerously close to field goal range. Then the 6 yard touchdown won the game.
Quincy Enunwa: That's how you make up for a mistake. Enunwa failed to come up with a ball in the final minute of regulation he really should have caught. He also failed to come up with a deep ball early in the game when he took an awkward path to the ball and alligator armed it a little. His 48 yard catch and run put the Jets in business in overtime. His other catch, a 21 yarder in the third quarter, set up a field goal.
Chan Gailey: Say what you will about playcalling. He had a few nice wrinkles today. He played a lot of Chris Ivory and Bilal Powell together. He'd put one into motion split out wide. This gave away the coverage for Ryan Fitzpatrick. If a linebacker followed the back in motion, it was man to man. If it was a corner, it was zone. But leaving another back in the backfield left the threat of the run. The two plays that led to the touchdown right before the half and Marshall's 20 yarder in overtime owed a lot of their success to play design.
Ryan Fitzpatrick: Fitzpatrick easily could have been in the bad column. I think the fumble was on him a lot, and that turned the game around. He also missed too many receivers open deep. The Jets were right to attack New England down the field with both starting safeties out. Too many passes were left on the field. Why do I put him in the good? Well, there was that drive in overtime to win the game. It's also tough to put a guy with 3 touchdowns and 296 yards in the bad column. He made the plays when the Jets needed them.
Kenbrell Thompkins: The Jets were really going after the matchups he got. With some more accurate passes, this could have been a monster day for Thompkins against his former team.
Bilal Powell: He continued to look elusive. He had another 56 yards on 7 carries and 34 yards on 5 catches. If I had a quibble with the coaching staff it is how the Jets went away from him when he's looking a lot more effective than Chris Ivory at this point of the year.
Stevan Ridley: He was actually looking elusive netting 36 yards on 7 carries.
Demario Davis: Davis is much-maligned, but I thought he had a number of big tackles today. He posted 8. He made a couple of stops behind the line of scrimmage.
David Harris: Harris was toasted on the game-tying touchdown. I think there's no way around that. Other than that, he played a very strong game, though. He was so quick to the ball that it felt like he understood New England's plays better than the Pats did at points. Harris had 6 tackles.
Sheldon Richardson: The defensive lineman caused real havoc for the Jets. In addition to his sack, he forced Brady to step into Lorenzo Mauldin on the rookie's sack. He also generated the pressure that made Brady throw early on Darrelle Revis' interception.
Lorenzo Mauldin: Another sack and a pressure for the rookie.
Muhammad Wilkerson: He really started to take the game over in the second half. He was constantly in Brady's face.
Erin Henderson: The linebacker chipped in 4 tackles.
Leonard Williams: He played a big role in shutting down the New England run game. They got no push with him in the middle of the line. The rookie finished with 6 tackles.
Randy Bullock: That 49 yard field goal was no chip shot and helped bring some stability to the game for the Jets.
Darrelle Revis: He had that interception. The Pats really didn't get anything off him either. He wasn't fooled when the Pats tried the trick play. It was strange that New England kept sending Rob Gronkowski his way. Finally before a big fourth down play, Belichick called a timeout to get out of that matchup.
Offensive Line: Their protection of Fitzpatrick was solid for most of the day outside the fumble. They really blew some big holes open to spark the run game in the first half. It might have been the best run blocking half the Jets had all season.
Chris Ivory: He seemed banged up even before they started working on him at the trainer's table. He isn't hitting holes with authority. Powell is lowering his shoulder and grinding out yardage. Ivory keeps looking to bounce outside and bust the big play.
Fourth Down Defensive Call: I know Marcus Williams is having a nice year, but I don't understand how he ends up one on one against Gronkowski on a key fourth down play.
The Fumble: I can't put Fitzpatrick or the line into the bad category, but this play has to be recognized for its game-changing effect. Bad blocking. Bad ball protection by Fitzpatrick. Bad job by Brian Winters whiffing when he had a clear shot at recovering the ball.
Failure to End Game in Regulation: The offense got into a funk in the fourth quarter when the Jets had the lead and a long drive could have iced the game.
With that, the Jets have a thrilling win over their bitter rival. This was the most significant Jets win over the Patriots in five years. Gang Green now needs one more win to make the Playoffs and end 2015 on a six game winning streak. Who would have thought that all of those weeks ago with this team leaving Houston 5-5?