The New York Jets crashed down to earth Sunday, putting an end to their four-game winning streak after losing 22-17 to the New England Patriots. We’ll examine those most responsible for the Jets Week 8 loss to the Patriots.
New York has lost 13 straight games against the Patriots. This one may hurt the most because the Jets came in with the better record, playing their best football in years, and should have won the game.
But crucial mistakes were their undoing. And now the Jets must face the Buffalo Bills, one of the league’s best teams, next week before reaching their bye.
First, let’s look at those most responsible for the Jets Week 8 loss to the Patriots.
2. Zach Wilson
The Jets quarterback had some nice moments Sunday. He threw a beautiful ball to Garrett Wilson on a 54-yard completion in the first half. He also made a perfectly placed pass to Tyler Conklin for a second-quarter touchdown. And late in the game he connected with Denzel Mims on a 63-yard catch and run before hitting Conklin for a second TD connection.
“He had flashes of good football,” coach Robert Saleh said.
But it wasn’t enough because Wilson killed the Jets with three brutal interceptions. In fact, those three egregious picks took all the luster off his NFL career-best 355 passing yards.
Zach Wilson thinks he's playing for the #Patriots, he threw 3 INTs today.
He also had a 4-INT game against them last year.pic.twitter.com/jec0ENWHq6
— Dov Kleiman (@NFL_DovKleiman) October 30, 2022
They were not only terrible throws, each was a senseless decision. Wilson seemed to panic with the ball under pressure on the run and tossed it right to the defense. He explained afterward that one pick by Devin McCourty was targeted to be thrown out of bounds. But for some reason he threw it along the sideline, just enough room for McCourty to make the turnover.
“The self-inflicted wounds have to be cleared up,” Saleh said.
1. John Franklin-Myers
Speaking of self-inflicted wounds, the game changed on a dime because of a needless hit by Jets lineman John Franklin-Myers.
With the Jets up 10-3 late in the first half, Patriots quarterback Mac Jones threw a pick-6 to Michael Carter. As the MetLife Stadium crowd erupted, a flag was thrown on the play. Franklin-Myers was called for a late hit on Jones. The touchdown was called back, and the Patriots were set up deep in Jets territory.
the passer against Mac Jones wipes out pick 6 for Jets https://t.co/lL1rbKi7Nc
— Main Team (@MainTeamSports2) October 30, 2022
The Patriots kicked a field goal right before the half ended, cutting the deficit to 10-6. They took the second-half kickoff, marched down the field and scored a touchdown. The Jets never regained their footing nor the lead. New England kicked three more field goals before New York added a late TD.
As perplexed as Saleh was with the referee’s explanation of the call, there’s no questioning its impact. It’s as if the Patriots realized they were the Patriots and the Jets morphed into their old selves after the huge swing of momentum.
“JFM has got to be better,” Saleh said. “It doesn’t matter. Do something. It (could have been) 17-3 going into the locker room to 10-6 and they got the ball, lapped us, scored another touchdown. It’s a critical exchange.”