The New England Patriots rallied from a 10-point fourth quarter deficit and Nick Folk‘s 51-yard field goal as time expired lifted the Patriots to a 30-27 victory over the New York Jets on Monday night.
A 20-yard pass from Cam Newton to Jakobi Meyers with eight seconds left to play to move the Patriots into field goal range. Folk then delivered the deciding blow with a kick right down the middle to hand the Jets a ninth straight loss to open the season.
With Joe Flacco starting at quarterback in place of an injured Sam Darnold, the Jets appeared well on their way to getting their first win of the season. Flacco completed 18 of 25 passes for 262 yards with three touchdowns as the Jets built their lead into the final quarter. However, the Patriots did just enough to complete the rally with a Flacco interception by J.C. Jackson helping New England complete the comeback as well.
The loss keeps the Jets in pole position for the No. 1 pick in next year’s NFL Draft. It’s the first time in history the Jets have opened a season 0-9. The Jets ran just four plays in the fourth quarter for a total of three yards and only held the ball for 1:24 as the Patriots completed the comeback.
After a Sergio Castillo 35-yard field goal gave the Jets a lead on their opening possession, the Patriots immediately answered with Newton scoring on a 5-yard run to take a 7-3 lead.
Flacco connected with Breshad Perriman for a 50-yard touchdown behind cornerback J.C. Jackson as the Jets went back on top. A 50-yard field goal from Castillo gave the Jets a 13-7 advantage.
After a 45-yard field goal from Nick Folk closed the gap for New England with 1:03 left in the half, Flacco and the Jets quickly found the end zone before the break. Jamison Crowder caught a 20-yard touchdown with a beautiful toe-tap catch along the sidelines as the Jets lead grew to 20-10 at halftime.
Rex Burkhead scored on a 1-yard run in the third quarter to close the gap for New England back to 20-17. However, Flacco and Perriman would hook up again on a 15-yard score as the Jets took a 10-point lead into the fourth quarter. Perriman caught five passes for 101 yards and two touchdowns for the Jets.
A promising 17-play drive for the Patriots came up short of the end zone as they settled for a 29-yard Folk field goal to cut the lead to 27-20 with 6:04 remaining.
J.C. Jackson picked off Flacco with 5:50 left to play to breathe new life into the Patriots chances. After facing a third-and-20, Newton hit Jakobi Meyers for a 19-yard gain with Newton sneaking for three yards on fourth-and-1 to keep the New England drive alive. Newton then connected with Damiere Byrd for 31 yards down to the Jets’ 3-yard line.
Three straight runs from Newton finally cracked the end zone and Folk’s extra point tied the game at 27-27 with 1:57 left to play.
After a three-and-out from the Jets, Newton led the Patriots 45 yards in eight plays over the final 47 seconds to give Folk the opportunity to end the game. Newton completed 27 of 35 passes for 274 yards and scored two touchdowns on the ground for New England. Meyers caught 12 passes for 169 yards.
Damien Harris, who led New England with 71 yards on 14 carries, left the game late in the fourth quarter and did not return.