The Jets have been erasing bad streaks over the past few weeks — winning their first division game in years, winning their first September game in years, winning four games in a row for the first time in seven years.
Now, here come the Patriots and their 12-game winning streak over the Jets.
Can the Jets (5-2) topple Bill Belichick and company Sunday and end New England’s dominance in this series?
The Patriots (3-4) certainly look vulnerable after they lost to the Bears on Monday night. New England has uncertainty at quarterback, and the Jets enter this rivalry game with the better record for the first time since 2001.
The Jets are also a motivated team after suffering a 54-13 loss in their most recent meeting with the Patriots. Head coach Robert Saleh did his best to downplay the idea of revenge this week, but it is clear that members of his team and coaching staff have payback on their minds.
“I remember the score. I remember a lot of things. I remember it being 40-plus [points scored] and shots still being taken on us,” defensive coordinator Jeff Ulbrich said. “It is what it is. It’s our job as a coaching staff and a defense to stop that. It comes down to what we can control, and we allowed way too much last year. I’m looking forward to this one.”
The Jets felt the Patriots ran up the score in that game. New England still was throwing deep passes in the fourth quarter, despite holding a huge lead. It was the first time the Jets had given 50 points since 1995, and it was the most points they had allowed since 1979.
“That was last year,” Saleh said. “We’re a different team than last year.”
The Jets have proven that with four straight wins, including victories at Green Bay and Denver the past two weeks. The Jets now return to MetLife Stadium and are expecting a raucous environment. They launched a campaign this week to encourage fans to be in their seats before the game begins.
The 5-2 start is their best since 2010, the last time they went to the playoffs. That is also the last time they started a season 6-2. A win would give the Jets a five-game winning streak for the first time since 2015.
“New England, we would be remiss to not acknowledge that they have been dominant for 20 years,” Saleh said, “but at the same time, it’s a championship moment and a championship game, no different than last week was and no different than next week will be.”
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