The Jets kick off their 2017 season on Sunday against the Buffalo Bills. Let’s take a look back at their last ten openers.
September 9, 2007: Patriots 38 Jets 14
New England came into the Meadowlands and crushed the Jets as Randy Moss had 9 catches for 183 yards in his Patriots debut. The game turned on a 108 yard kickoff return for a touchdown on the opening kickoff of the second half. New England’s lead was extended from 14-7 to 21-7, and the Patriots never looked back. Although this was not a competitive game, it lives on in NFL lore as one day later accusations emerged of a Patriots staff member videotaping signals of the Jets coaching staff. The Patriots were eventually stripped of a first round Draft pick, while the team and head coach Bill Belichick were hit with six figure fines. In many ways, the team’s public reputation has never recovered.
September 7, 2008: Jets 20 Dolphins 14
Brett Favre’s Jets debut saw him throw for 194 yards and a pair of touchdowns. One of them came because a Mike Nugent injury limited the kicker and forced the Jets to go for it on a fourth down. Things got dicey for the Jets as the Dolphins scored a touchdown with under 4:00 to go in the fourth quarter cutting a 20-7 Jets lead to 20-14. The Dolphins got the ball back and drove into the red zone, but a Darrelle Revis end zone interception in the final ten seconds sealed the win. Pennington and the Dolphins would get revenge, however, clinching the AFC East title with a Week 17 win over the Jets in the Meadowlands.
September 13, 2009: Jets 20 Texans 7
The Rex Ryan and Mark Sanchez Era got off to a tremendous start. Sanchez threw for 272 yards and a touchdown in his first career start while Ryan’s defense held Houston to 11 first downs and 183 total yards. A Sanchez pick six was the only blemish on this day.
September 13, 2010: Ravens 10 Jets 9
The Jets first home game at then New Meadowlands Stadium was less than a thing of beauty. Both offenses averaged around 4 yards per play, and only one touchdown was scored. Sanchez threw for only 74 yards on a 10 for 21 passing night as the Jets wasted an excellent defensive effort.
September 11, 2011: Jets 27 Cowboys 24
In an emotional Sunday night game on the tenth anniversary of the 9/11 tragedy, the Jets rallied from 14 down in the fourth quarter to win. A Plaxico Burress 26 yard touchdown pass and a Joe McKnight blocked punt returned for a touchdown to wipe out the deficit. Then late in the fourth quarter a Revis interception of Tony Romo set up Nick Folk for a 50 yard game-winning field goal.
September 9, 2012: Jets 48 Bills 28
Fresh off a lucrative contract extension, Mark Sanchez threw for 266 yards and 3 touchdowns, doing his best to show he was worth the money. The Tony Sparano offense looked like a high-flying juggernaut. It didn’t last. After scoring 48 in the opener, the Jets only managed 233 points for the rest of the season, finishing 6-10.
September 8, 2013: Jets 18 Buccaneers 17
This wild game saw three lead changes in the last six minutes and two in the last 40 seconds. A Rian Lindell 37 yarder with 34 seconds left gave the Bucs a 17-15 lead and what looked like a victory, but a Lavonte David late hit on Geno Smith gifted the Jets 15 yards and set up a Folk 48 yarder to pull victory from the jaws of defeat.
September 7, 2014: Jets 19 Raiders 14
For one week at least, it appeared the patchwork secondary John Idzik put together would hold. Derek Carr managed only 151 yards passing in 32 attempts. A Chris Ivory 71 yard touchdown run in the fourth quarter provided the Jets with a 19-7 lead. The Raiders tacked on a touchdown, but the Jets held on for victory.
September 13, 2015: Jets 31 Browns 10
After a free agency spending spree, the Jets new look defense forced four turnovers in a laugher. Brandon Marshall forced a fifth as he ripped the ball from Tashaun Gibson after a Ryan Fitzpatrick interception in the second quarter. The Browns were leading 7-0 at the time, but the Jets scored a touchdown after Marshall’s play and never looked back.
September 11, 2016: Bengals 23 Jets 22
Despite recording seven sacks, the Jets dropped their opener to the Bengals as A.J. Green torched Darrelle Revis to the tune of 12 catches for 180 yards. Mike Nugent hit a 47 yard field goal late in the fourth quarter to provide Cincinnati with the winning margin. Marshall was held to 3 catches and had a critical drop in the final minute with the Jets hoping to put together a game-winning drive.