What does Pro Football Reference's win probability think?
Pro Football Reference has a win probability formula that estimates a team's chances of winning based on factors like score, time, and down. Which play swung the game the most in the Jets' favor yesterday by that formula?
Based on this criteria, the play that swung the Jets' odds the most happened in overtime. It was Quincy Enunwa's 48 yard catch and run on the second play of the extra period. The brought the ball from the New York 22 to the New England 30. Just like that, the Jets were in field goal range. At the very least, they were set up to kick a go ahead field goal, and suddenly they were in business to score a game-winning touchdown. This raised the Jets' winning odds from 45.6% to 66.6%, a 21% swing.
What do I think?
I have to go back to an event that wasn't a play from scrimmage. New England won the overtime coin toss and elected to kick. It's really tough to not question the wisdom of the strategy. The Pats passed on an opportunity to give Tom Brady the ball with a chance to win the game and instead opted for a situation where they might lose without Brady getting to touch the ball. The Jets made the Pats pay.
Maybe Bill Belichick was playing for field position with the Jets offense struggling in the fourth quarter. Maybe knowing he didn't need to win this game to get the top seed in the AFC, he was thinking long-term. Was he trying to test his defense by creating some adversity he thought might serve them well in the big picture? I don't know. If he was trying to win the game, though, it's tough to defend not giving Brady the first chance with the ball right after he had led a touchdown drive.