Happy 10th Anniversary To Infamous Patriots-Jets Butt Fumble

The Patriots' last Thanksgiving game featured an all-time blunder


November 22, 2022

The New England Patriots will play on Thanksgiving this year for the first time in a decade. Their last game on the holiday was … memorable, to say the least.

Tuesday marked the 10th anniversary of one of the most infamous lowlights in NFL history: New York Jets quarterback Mark Sanchez running straight into the backside of offensive lineman Brandon Moore, causing a fumble that safety Steve Gregory returned for a touchdown.

Or, as it quickly became known, the Butt Fumble.

Gregory’s score was part of an avalanche of Patriots points that quickly turned that 2012 matchup between AFC East rivals into a rout. New England scored three touchdowns in a 52-second span midway through the second quarter en route to a 49-19 steamrolling at MetLife Stadium.

“It was shown on TV every day for that entire year,” Gregory told ESPN for a 2017 Butt Fumble retrospective. “If you go anywhere, it could be a restaurant, a movie theater, you could be at a charity event on a golf course, it doesn’t matter where you are. It’s like a Jeopardy question. As soon as the trivia comes up, ‘Hey, remember the Butt Fumble?’ …

“When Thanksgiving rolls around, here comes 50 or 60 text messages from all my buddies: ‘Remember the Butt Fumble?’ Thanksgiving is Butt Fumble.”

Jets head coach Rex Ryan called the Butt Fumble and the touchdowns that surrounded it the most embarrassing stretch of his coaching career. The Patriots outscored the Jets 35-0 in that quarter alone, with two touchdowns before Sanchez’s blunder — which defensive tackle Vince Wilfork helped trigger by shoving Moore into the New York QB — and two more after it.

“I’ve had my butt kicked several times,” Ryan told ESPN, “but that was the worst. I coached for 30 years; that was the worst quarter in the history of my coaching career, and there’s been some bad ones. But not even close to that one. It was brutal.”

The Patriots, who just stunned the 2022 Jets with a game-winning Marcus Jones punt-return touchdown in the final seconds, will hope for similar success when they visit the Minnesota Vikings Thursday night.

Thumbnail photo via Ed Mulholland/USA TODAY Sports Images
Boston Bruins forward Brad Marchand
Previous Article

Ford Final Five Facts: Bruins Win Seventh Straight With 5-3 Victory Over Lightning

NCAA Football: North Dakota at Nebraska
Next Article

Nebraska Cornhuskers Coaching Candidates

Picked For You