Did Jets Get Screwed By Non-Call During Marcus Jones Punt Return?

But would it even have made a difference?


November 20, 2022

FOXBORO, Mass. — Officials might’ve missed a potentially key penalty during Marcus Jones’ miraculous return at the end of Sunday’s game between the Patriots and Jets.

New England’s rookie cornerback broke a 3-3 tie when he ripped off an 84-yard punt return touchdown in the final minute at Gillette Stadium. The Patriots took a 10-3 lead with five seconds remaining and walked away with a victory in what was otherwise a forgettable, boring rematch with New York.

However, a replay revealed that Patriots linebacker Mack Wilson might’ve gotten away with an illegal block in the back around the 15-yard line.

You can see it near the end of this video:

And here are two photos of the play:

The question then becomes: Would a penalty even have mattered?

Had a penalty been called, the Patriots would’ve gotten the ball near the Jets’ 25-yard line. Even if they opted against running one more offensive play, the Patriots then would’ve been able to send out Nick Folk (who missed two field goals on the afternoon) for about a 42-yard try — with the wind at his back.

So, there’s a great chance that New England would’ve won the game anyway. That said, a 42-yard field goal attempt is no gimme, and Jets players would’ve been justified in being angry about not at least getting a chance to block the kick and/or force a miss.

But it matters not, as the Patriots got a win in the biggest game of their season and in doing so leap-frogged the Jets in the AFC East standings.

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Thumbnail photo via Brian Fluharty/USA TODAY Sports Images
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