Final, Patriots 22-17: Chris Long’s biggest play as a member of the New England Patriots helped secure a dramatic win over the New York Jets.
Long forced a Ryan Fitzpatrick fumble with less than two minutes remaining in the fourth quarter of Sunday’s AFC East showdown at MetLife Stadium, and Trey Flowers recovered for New England. Tom Brady and the Patriots’ offense ran out the clock to improve to 9-2 on the season.
Brady completed 30 of 50 passes — including 10 of 16 in the fourth quarter — for 286 yards with two touchdowns in the win, with both scores coming to rookie wide receiver Malcolm Mitchell. New England’s defense struggled in coverage, allowing 176 receiving yards to Brandon Marshall and Quincy Enunwa alone, but held running back Matt Forte to 27 yards on 13 carries and forced two turnovers — their first since Week 7.
Next up for the Patriots is a home game against the Los Angeles Rams next Sunday afternoon at Gillette Stadium.
Fourth quarter, 1:56, Patriots 22-17: The Patriots picked on old friend Darrelle Revis once again on first-and-goal from the 8, and the result was Malcolm Mitchell’s second touchdown catch of the game.
Tom Brady went 6-for-8 on the scoring drive, including a 24-yard completion to Julian Edelman, a 16-yarder to Dion Lewis and a 25-yarder to Chris Hogan. He’s 10 of 16 for 132 yards with one score so far in the fourth quarter.
The Patriots went for two following the touchdown but were unsuccessful, as replays showed James White had not crossed the plane of the end zone before stepping out of bounds. — Z.C.
Fourth quarter, 5:04, Jets 17-16: New York punted it away after picking up 29 yards on four plays. It’ll be Patriots’ ball from their own 17 with just over five minutes to play. — Z.C.
Fourth quarter, 7:02, Jets 17-16: The Patriots responded to Quincy Enunwa’s touchdown with an eight-play, 53-yard scoring drive. That score was just a field goal, however.
Malcolm Mitchell had what would have been his second touchdown catch of the day slip through his hands on third down, forcing the Patriots to settle for a field-goal try. Stephen Goskowski drilled it, but his missed kick earlier in the game is looming large right now. — Z.C.
Fourth quarter, 10:17, Jets 17-13: The Jets have reclaimed the lead, thanks to a brilliant touchdown catch by Quincy Enunwa.
Enunwa initially was ruled out of bounds after he elevated to snare a Ryan Fitzpatrick pass over Malcolm Butler, but replays revealed his right foot and rear end had touched down inside the end zone. The referee agreed, awarding the wideout his fourth touchdown catch of the season.
Butler now has allowed two touchdown passes today, the first time he’s done so in a single game in his NFL career. — Z.C.
Fourth quarter, 14:49, Patriots 13-10: A third-down pass from Tom Brady to Chris Hogan sailed high, resulting in a New England punt.
Of note: Fullback James Develin hauled in his first catch of the season during the Patriots’ most recent drive, and Brady now has completed passes to eight different receivers today. — Zack Cox
Third quarter, 2:24, Patriots 13-10: The Patriots forced another punt at midfield and have the ball on their own 12-yard line.
Third quarter, 7:34, Patriots 13-10: The Patriots have their first lead of the game after a good field goal by Stephen Gostkowski.
Third quarter, 12:30, 10-10: Speaking of tight ends, Martellus Bennett is getting his right foot/ankle checked on the bench after staying down following a catch. The Patriots have no tight ends left on their bench.
UPDATE: Bennett reentered the game four plays later.
Third quarter, 12:55, 10-10: The Patriots forced a three-and-out after a Jets holding penalty on first down. The Patriots have the ball on their own 31-yard line.
Gronkowski has been ruled out with his back injury.
End half, 10-10: The momentum died. Stephen Gostkowski missed the 39-yard field goal. That’s his fourth missed field goal on the season. He also has missed three extra points.
The Patriots got the ball with 1:58 left in the half, and the Patriots were forced to kick a field goal despite having a timeout left. Bizarre clock management by Bill Belichick.
Second quarter, 1:58, 10-10: Momentum, if it exists, has swung the Patriots’ way and hit the Jets in the face.
The Patriots forced a field goal, which was blocked by Alan Branch and recovered by Dont’a Hightower. The Patriots have the ball on their own 46-yard line.
Second quarter, 6:29, 10-10: The Patriots capitalized off the turnover by tying the game. Brady had an 18-yard completion to Julian Edelman, and Dion Lewis had a long carry of 15 yards.
Brady hit Malcolm Mitchell for the rookie wideout’s second career touchdown. Mitchell burned former Patriots cornerback Darrelle Revis on the score.
Second quarter, 9:40, Jets 10-3: The Patriots forced their first turnover in over a month. Malcolm Butler let up an 18-yard catch to Robby Anderson then pulled the ball out and recovered it.
Second quarter, 10:48, Jets 10-3: The Patriots needed trickery and a defensive pass interference penalty from Darryl Roberts to cut the Jets’ lead to one score.
Brady lateralled to Chris Hogan, who then threw to Malcolm Mitchell, who drew the penalty.
The Patriots went backwards after the penalty, however, and were forced to settle for a field goal.
Second quarter, 14:56, Jets 10-0: The Jets now lead by two scores early in the second quarter.
Patriots cornerback Malcolm Butler was beat for a 40-yard catch by receiver Quincy Enunwa early in the drive, and for a 1-yard touchdown catch by wideout Brandon Marshall to close out the drive.
Second quarter, 15:00, Jets 3-0: The Patriots announce Gronkowski is questionable to return with a back injury.
First quarter, 2:32, Jets 3-0: Tight end Rob Gronkowski walked to the locker room with members of the Patriots’ training staff. It’s unclear what injury he’s dealing with.
First quarter, 4:42, Jets 3-0: The Patriots managed just one first down again. They need to wake up soon.
Brady now is 0 of 2 on deep passes. His third-down attempt to Rob Gronkowski probably should have drawn a flag from former Patriots cornerback Darryl Roberts, now on the Jets. Roberts was holding down Gronk’s arm.
First quarter, 6:54, Jets 3-0: The Patriots’ defense just stopped the Jets for a three-and-out thanks in large part to a first-down tackle for loss by rookie linebacker Elandon Roberts. Safety Devin McCourty also dragged Jets wide receiver Quincy Enunwa down after 4 yards on third-and-5. The Patriots have the ball on their own 34-yard line after a Jets punt.
First quarter, 8:57, Jets 3-0: The Patriots managed one first down on that drive before being forced to punt. Brady is just 1 of 5 for 9 yards. Perhaps his injured knee, which kept him out of practice Wednesday and Thursday, is limiting him.
Brady served as a lead blocker despite the bum knee on a first-down run by LeGarrette Blount.
He might want to get out of the way next time.
First quarter, 10:29, Jets 3-0: The Jets go ahead 3-0 with a 51-yard field goal.
The Jets were flagged for holding on third-and-8 from the 33-yard line on an incomplete pass but declined the penalty. Accepting would have repeated third down but pushed the Jets out of field-goal range. Interesting decision. Nick Folk booted through the 51-yard field goal with ease.
First quarter, 13:56: The Patriots went three-and-out in the slowest way possible. Brady threw two incompletions, then Dion Lewis picked up what first was spotted as 10 yards on a third-down catch. He showed off some nifty footwork on the play.
The Jets challenged the spot, and it was reversed, giving Lewis 9 yards on the play. The Patriots punted.
Jordan Richards remains down on the turf with a knee injury after the punt. The Jets will start with the ball on their 26-yard line.
First quarter, 15:00: The Patriots lost the coin toss, and the Jets chose to defer. The Patriots will receive to begin the game. Let’s go.
4:18 p.m.: We’re seven minutes from kickoff, and the MetLife Stadium stands are sparse.
2:55 p.m.: Here are today’s inactives:
CB Cyrus Jones
WR Matthew Slater
RB D.J. Foster
CB Justin Coleman
DT Woodrow Hamilton
OT LaAdrian Waddle
TE Matt Lengel
— This means Tom Brady and Rob Gronkowski are active.
— Defensive end Jabaal Sheard also is active after being a healthy scratch in Week 11.
— The Patriots are dressing just four cornerbacks: Malcolm Butler, Eric Rowe, Logan Ryan and Jonathan Jones.
Also, not a great look by former Patriots linebacker Jamie Collins on this Odell Beckham Jr. touchdown.
1:50 p.m.: Zack Cox and I are posted up at MetLife Stadium, where rookie quarterback Jacoby Brissett, who’s on injured reserve, is throwing. Brissett likely will be activated off injured reserve soon, The Boston Globe’s Ben Volin reported Sunday.
1:28 a.m. ET: The week of worrying whether New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady and tight end Rob Gronkowski would play Sunday against the New York Jets at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J., reportedly was all for naught.
Brady reportedly has soreness and swelling in his knee. Gronkowski reportedly had bleeding and bruising in his chest after a hard hit from Seattle Seahawks safety Earl Thomas in Week 11. Gronkowski sat out the Patriots’ Week 11 win over the San Francisco 49ers.
Only rookie cornerback Cyrus Jones (illness) and wide receiver/special teamer Matthew Slater (foot) have been ruled out. That means wide receivers Chris Hogan (back) and Julian Edelman (foot) and tight end Martellus Bennett (ankle) made the trip. They also are expected to play, according to Schefter.
Our prediction for the final five inactives: running back D.J. Foster, tight end Matt Lengel, offensive tackle LaAdrian Waddle, defensive end Geneo Grissom and defensive tackle Woodrow Hamilton.
We could see a linebacker or additional running back inactive, though it’s too difficult to guess who that might be.
Thumbnail photo via Brad Penner/USA TODAY Sports Images