It looked for awhile like the Jets would do the improbable and pull off an upset on the road against the Patriots. But a third quarter lead didn’t hold up and a late rally fell short in a gut-wrenching 27-25 loss on Thursday night.
Down 27-19 late in the fourth quarter, quarterback Geno Smith led an efficient drive down the field capped by a 10-yard touchdown pass to tight end Jeff Cumberland, cutting the Patriots lead to 27-25. But the Jets missed the two-point conversion that would have tied things up.
Tom Brady found running back Shane Vereen for touchdowns twice in the first half and a touchdown pass to Danny Amendola in the fourth quarter gave the Patriots the lead. But the class of the AFC East were pushed hard by the Jets.
The Jets got close enough for Nick Folk to attempt a 58-yard field goal at the final whistle, but it was blocked by Patriots defensive lineman Chris Jones.
Metro breaks down what went wrong in the narrow defeat.
1. Big play Brady
He didn’t put up the big numbers we’ve come to expect, but Brady was just good enough to cost the Jets on a couple of big plays. On the game’s opening drive, he went over the top for a 49-yard touchdown pass to Vereen, when cornerback Phillip Adams expected help from the safety he never received.
2. Mistakes and miscues
Oday Aboushi cost the Jets a touchdown on a holding call on the first drive of the game. They would have to settle for a field goal, which became a consistent issue for the Jets. They also moved the ball into the red zone on their second drive, only to see Willie Colon push them back due to holding. Again they settled for a field goal. They ended up settling for field goals on their first four drives. On the other side of the ball, the Jets defense allowed a devastating touchdown on third-and-goal from the 19-yard line in the fourth quarter.
3. Helping hand
It took until the Jets’ final possession in the game for a wide receiver not named Eric Decker to get a catch — a crucial 16-yard reception from Jeremy Kerley. There were a number of factors in play, from poor protection to poor decisions at the quarterback position, but the Jets must get a better balance early. Decker played big, often with former Jet Darrelle Revis on his back, as he finished with four receptions for 65 yards.
Follow Jets beat writer Kristian Dyer on Twitter @KristianRDyer.