Final, Patriots 30-27: Nick Folk’s 51-yard field goal as time expired gave the New England Patriots a come-from-behind win over the New York Jets in a downright bonkers Monday night matchup.
Jakobi Meyers, whose 20-yard catch in the final seconds set up Folk’s game-winner, finished with career highs of 12 receptions on 14 targets for 169 yards.
Cam Newton went 27-for-35 for 274 yards and ran for two touchdowns. Rex Burkhead carried 12 times for 56 yards and a score. Damien Harris led all rushers with 71 yards on 14 carries before leaving the game with a chest injury.
The Patriots, who improved to 3-5 and snapped a four-game losing streak, trailed by 10 with less than seven minutes remaining. Cornerback J.C. Jackson allowed two touchdown passes but atoned by intercepting a Joe Flacco deep ball in the fourth quarter, setting up New England’s game-tying touchdown.
Next up for the Patriots is a Sunday night home game against Lamar Jackson and the Baltimore Ravens.
Fourth quarter, 0:47, 27-27: Deatrich Wise sack. Adrian Phillips pressure. Jets three-and-out. Patriots ball.
Can Cam Newton, who has three failed comebacks on his record this season, finally finish one here?
Fourth quarter, 1:51, 27-27: We are all tied up.
The Patriots set up that Cam Newton sneak with a 19-yard completion to Jakobi Meyers on third-and-20, another Newton sneak on fourth-and-1 and a 31-yard catch-and-run by Damiere Byrd, who entered tonight ranked in the bottom 10 in the NFL in YAC/reception.
The Patriots’ last three drives have lasted 13, 17 and 11 plays.
Fourth quarter, 4:53, Jets 27-20: Damien Harris is receiving medical attention on the Patriots’ bench after taking a big hit from linebacker Neville Hewitt.
Harris has run hard and well tonight, totaling 71 yards on 14 carries, including a tenacious 21-yard romp earlier in the drive.
Fourth quarter, 6:00, Jets 27-20: The Patriots tacked on another field goal to make this a one-score game, but it took them more than nine minutes to do so.
Their 17-play marathon march included a remarkable escape act by Cam Newton:
A third-down Newton stumble that resulted in a field-goal try.
A 12 men on the field penalty on said field-goal try:
A couple of short gains, an offensive holding call and an eventual three-pointer by Nick Folk.
On the first play of the ensuing Jets possession, Joe Flacco, who’s been excellent tonight, heaved a deep ball into double coverage that was picked off by J.C. Jackson, giving the ball right back to New England.
Jackson, who was in coverage on two of New York’s earlier touchdowns, has an interception in each of his last four games.
Third quarter, 0:25, Jets 27-17: This is not J.C. Jackson’s night.
Breshad Perriman’s subtle shimmy off the line caused to Jackson to tumble over, resulting in an easy pitch-and-catch for Joe Flacco. It was the second touchdown Jackson has allowed tonight.
Jackson and Jason McCourty typically are more-than-capable running mates to Stephon Gilmore, but the Patriots really miss the reigning Defensive Player of the Year tonight.
Third quarter, 7:27, Jets 20-17: The Patriots opened the second half with a much-needed touchdown drive that consumed more than half of the third quarter.
Rex Burkhead was the engine, carrying six times for 25 yards, including a 4-yard pickup on third-and-4 and a 1-yard touchdown plunge.
Jakobi Meyers also registered two more catches — he’s up over 100 yards tonight for the first time in his career — and Damien Harris had carries of 11 and 6 yards.
Halftime, Jets 20-10: My goodness.
The Jets’ last three-play drive:
— 15-yard completion to Denzel Mims
— 42-yard pass interference penalty on Jason McCourty
— 20-yard touchdown pass to Jamison Crowder. It was a dime by Joe Flacco (12-for-17, 194 yards, two touchdowns in this first half) and a superb catch by Crowder, who beat McCourty and was able to tap his toes down in the end zone.
The Patriots are imploding against the worst team in the NFL.
Second quarter, 1:10, Jets 13-10: An iffy roughing the passer penalty and three more completions to Jakobi Meyers set up a 45-yard Nick Folk filed goal.
Meyers was flagged for an illegal shift that wiped out another reception, but he’s been the Patriots’ best offensive player in this first half. He’s caught all seven of his targets for 93 yards, setting career highs in both categories.
The Jets now will try to extend their lead before halftime.
Second quarter, 4:33, Jets 13-7: Facing a fourth-and-1, the Patriots called what appeared to be a run-pass option. Cam Newton chose the former, handing the ball to pass-catching back James White for an inside run.
White certainly is not an ideal short-yardage ball-carrier. But even Derrick Henry wouldn’t have succeeded on this particular play.
Defensive tackle Foley Fatukasi manhandled David Andrews to halt White in the backfield and force a fumble. Shaq Mason recovered but did so behind the line, resulting in a turnover on downs.
The Jets kicked a 50-yard field goal on the ensuing drive to extend their lead. Ugliness all around for the Patriots.
Second quarter, 9:59, Jets 10-7: J.C. Jackson will want to burn the tape from New York’s last drive.
This was a brutal sequence for New England’s budding star cornerback, who picked up a penalty for defensive pass interference and then got burned by Breshad Perriman for a 50-yard touchdown two plays later.
Second quarter, 12:30, Patriots 7-3: Mekhi Becton isn’t the only injured left tackle. Isaiah Wynn now is questionable to return with an ankle injury.
Korey Cunningham replaced Wynn during the Patriots’ latest drive. With Jermaine Eluemunor and Justin Herron on injured reserve, Cunningham is the Patriots’ only backup tackle tonight.
First quarter, 0:22, Patriots 7-3: Tashawn Bower got the start, but Chase Winovich has been an every-down player since midway through the Jets’ first possession.
That’s a long-overdue adjustment for New England’s defense, as Winovich had seen his snap count plummet over the previous four games. So far, he’s rushed off the edge, blitzed from the second level and dropped back into coverage.
Joe Flacco has remained upright through New York’s first two drives, but he might have just lost his top offensive lineman. Mekhi Becton, the Jets’ stud rookie left tackle, is heading to the locker room.
That would be a gigantic blow for a Jets offense that needs every break it can get.
First quarter, 3:34, Patriots 7-3: Patriots’ defense thus far: not great.
Patriots’ offense: much, much better.
Cam Newton marched his troops 75 yards in eight plays (four passes, four runs) to score the first first-quarter touchdown of the season for New England’s offense.
The biggest play of the drive came courtesy of Jakobi Meyers, who picked up 33 yards on a post-corner to set up a 5-yard Newton touchdown run.
Damien Harris, who had a great block on Meyers’ big gain, also showed impressive power on a 12-yard rush that opened the drive. Damiere Byrd had an 8-yard catch on third-and-5.
With only one active tight end (a hobbled Ryan Izzo), the Patriots utilized Korey Cunningham as an extra blocker on multiple plays, including Meyers’ long reception.
First quarter, 8:33, Jets 3-0: How banged up is this Patriots defense? Three of the players who started tonight’s game (Nick Thurman, Tashawn Bower and Terez Hall) began the season on the practice squad.
Notably, Hall started in Ja’Whaun Bentley’s inside linebacker spot rather than Josh Uche, Anfernee Jennings or Cassh Maluia. Cornerback Myles Bryant — another ex-practice squadder — also saw the action on the opening drive, shadowing former Patriot Braxton Berrios on one third down.
That hodgepodge group struggled to stop Flacco and Co., who drained nearly half of the first-quarter clock before booting a field goal.
Bower had a chance to drop Frank Gore in the backfield on one third down but couldn’t wrap up the 37-year-old back. Two plays later, Denzel Mims beat Jason McCourty for 26 yards. Flacco later found Breshad Perriman to move the chains on third-and-5.
The Patriots’ defense finally got a stop when J.C. Jackson broke up a pass to Perriman in the end zone.
Not exactly an inspiring start for New England’s defense.
First quarter, 15:00, 0-0:The Patriots won the opening coin toss and deferred. Joe Flacco and the Jets’ offense will get the ball first.
Once the Patriots’ offense gets its turn, keep an eye out for this:
7:20 p.m.: Kicker Nick Folk is active, but the Patriots don’t appear to be totally confident in the health of his injured back.
Punter/kickoff man Jake Bailey is kicking field goals in warmups, as reported by Jim McBride of The Boston Globe:
That’s wide receiver/return man Gunner Olszewski serving as the holder, which he did during his college career at Bemidji State.
Olszewski truly has been a utility player for the Patriots, seeing time at receiver, punt returner, kick returner, cornerback (in the preseason) and in kickoff coverage.
Bailey hasn’t attempted a field goal since before high school, but he did hit three 50-plus-yarders as a high school senior, including one from 54.
We’ll find out soon whether this is simply a precaution.
6:50 p.m.: No new surprises on the Patriots’ inactive list. Third-string quarterback Brian Hoyer joins the six players who already were ruled out.
Rookie safety Kyle Dugger draws back into the lineup tonight after missing the last two games with an ankle injury. Dugger, the Patriots’ top pick in the 2020 draft, impressed early in the season and could see some time at linebacker given the Patriots’ lack of depth at the second level.
Defensive tackle Carl Davis will make his Patriots debut, as will Terez Hall and Kristian Wilkerson (both up from the practice squad). The 320-pound Davis could play a key role up front with Lawrence Guy sidelined.
The Patriots did not activate running back Sony Michel off injured reserve, so he will not play tonight.
Across the field, Sam Darnold officially is inactive, meaning Joe Flacco will start at quarterback for the Jets. New York also will be without defensive tackle Quinnen Williams, the third overall pick in last year’s draft.
5 p.m.: The Patriots added three players from their practice squad for tonight’s game, elevating linebacker Terez Hall and receiver Kristian Wilkerson and signing outside linebacker Tashawn Bower to the 53-man roster.
More on those moves here.
11:40 a.m.: The Patriots officially downgraded rookie tight end Dalton Keene to “out” for tonight’s game. That means they’ll be down to one available tight end (Ryan Izzo) for the second consecutive week.
We’ll see if New England rolls with just Izzo (who’s listed as questionable with a hamstring injury) at the position or elevates Rashod Berry from the practice squad for additional depth. Either way, last week’s uptick in 20 personnel (two running backs, no tight ends) likely will continue tonight.
9 a.m. ET: The 2-5 New England Patriots are trying to snap a four-game losing streak. The 0-8 New York Jets are looking for their first win of the 2020 NFL season.
The longtime AFC East rivals will square off tonight at MetLife Stadium.
The Patriots enter this game shorthanded on both sides of the ball, having ruled out three defensive starters (cornerback Stephon Gilmore, defensive tackle Lawrence Guy and linebacker Ja’Whaun Bentley) and starting wide receiver N’Keal Harry.
Reserve running back J.J. Taylor also will not play tonight, nor will wideout Julian Edelman, who remains on injured reserve.
The following 14 Patriots players are listed as questionable:
OLB Shilique Calhoun (knee)
DT Carl Davis (concussion)
S Cody Davis (calf)
S Kyle Dugger (ankle)
K Nick Folk (back)
RB Damien Harris (ankle)
TE Ryan Izzo (hamstring)
CB J.C. Jackson (knee)
TE Dalton Keene (knee)
G Shaq Mason (calf)
OLB John Simon (elbow)
G Joe Thuney (ankle)
DE Deatrich Wise (knee, hand)
OT Isaiah Wynn (ankle)
Of those players, only Keene did not travel with the team to East Rutherford, N.J., though the Patriots left open the possibility of him joining them before kickoff.
Losing Guy and Bentley weakens a front seven that has struggled mightily against the run of late, though the latter has not performed up to expectations this season. Expect a much larger role for second-round draft pick Josh Uche, who could start in Bentley’s place. Carl Davis, who’s yet to appear in a game for the Patriots, will be a player to watch in Guy’s absence.
The Jets, who are expected to start veteran backup quarterback Joe Flacco in place of the injured Sam Darnold, have been the NFL’s worst passing team and worst overall offense in 2020 but do feature a moderately competent ground game led by the ageless Frank Gore.
Offensively, the Patriots will look to build on the promising second-half performance they staged last Sunday in Buffalo. They remain light on proven depth at receiver and tight end, especially with Izzo and Keene both banged up.
This could be another busy night for running back Damien Harris, who’s surpassed 100 rushing yards in two of his four appearances this season. It remains to be seen whether Sony Michel, New England’s lead back to start the year, will be activated off IR this afternoon.
Wynn’s status also will be worth monitoring. The Patriots’ starting left tackle sat out practice Friday before returning in a limited capacity for the team’s final session of the week. He’s one of three O-line starters listed as questionable, along with guards Joe Thuney and Shaq Mason.
The Patriots have yet to announce any practice squad elevations, but receiver Kristian Wilkerson traveled with the team, a source told NESN’s Doug Kyed. New England also has multiple D-tackles (Bill Murray, Ryan Glasgow) and linebackers (Terez Hall, Michael Pinckney) who could be called up to fill out those position groups. Edge rusher/tight end Rashod Berry is another candidate if Izzo and Keene both are hobbled, and Caleb Benenoch or Jordan Steckler could provide O-line depth if needed.
Kickoff is set for 8:15 p.m. ET. Follow along throughout the day for full pre- and in-game coverage.