EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. — God bless Zach Wilson.
The Patriots can partially thank the Jets quarterback for a get-right recreation Sunday afternoon at MetLife Stadium. With a 15-10 Week 3 win over the Jets, the Patriots improved their file to 1-2.
The Patriots basically closed the sport out with Wilson taking a security when exterior linebacker Matthew Judon sacked him in the long run zone with 2:27 left within the fourth quarter. The play was emblematic of Wilson’s efficiency all recreation.
But just like the drenching situations in New Jersey, it wasn’t all the time fairly for the Pats. Quarterback Mac Jones’ longest play of the sport got here on a deep go to uncovered third tight finish Pharaoh Brown.
The Patriots had been operating out of 13 personnel with one operating again, one extensive receiver and three tight ends on the sector early within the recreation. So, when Jones faked a handoff to operating again Rhamondre Stevenson on first-and-10 on the Patriots’ 42-yard line with 11:49 left within the second quarter, Jets security Jordan Whitehead crept as much as cease the run as he watched Brown dash by him. Brown caught the ball on the Jets’ 39-yard line and outran the protection earlier than diving into the top zone for the rating.
The Patriots in any other case couldn’t get a lot happening offense towards a powerful Jets protection. Jones made some dangerous selections whereas going 15-of-29 for 201 yards with the landing. No receiver apart from Brown gained greater than 46 yards via the air.
Running again Ezekiel Elliott appeared the most effective he’s been all season, carrying the ball 16 instances for 80 yards. Stevenson carried the ball 19 instances for 59 yards and caught one go on 4 targets for 3 yards with a drop.
Rookie kicker Chad Ryland was 2-of-4 on subject objectives, although each of his misses got here after excessive snaps from lengthy snapper Joe Cardona, who struggled via the moist situations. Ryland hit subject objectives of 48 and 51 yards however missed from 48 and 57 yards as head coach Bill Belichick put a number of religion within the Maryland product.
Wilson was largely terrible, hitting 18-of-34 passes for 157 yards. He by no means appeared snug within the pocket and really sacked himself by sitting down on the turf halfway via the primary quarter. Outside linebacker Matt Judon bought credit score for the play. He now has 4 sacks in three weeks.
The Jets did problem the Patriots’ stout protection with a 13-play, 84-yard drive that took up the center a part of the fourth quarter. The Patriots appeared to make a third-down cease, however cornerback Myles Bryant was flagged for go interference in the long run zone. Fullback Nick Bawden scored on a 1-yard plunge on the subsequent play.
Jets followers — nonetheless mourning the lack of beginning quarterback Aaron Rodgers, who suffered a torn Achilles 4 performs into the season — recurrently let Wilson hear it, vigorously booing the third-year professional after his common unsuccessful drives.
The Patriots had been daring the Jets to go the ball early within the recreation, popping out in an old-school 3-4 base protection. The Jets wouldn’t take the bait, and the Patriots made them pay by limiting operating backs to simply 38 yards on 22 carries. The two-headed assault of Breece Hall and Dalvin Cook didn’t have a carry over 7 yards.
The Jets’ different rating got here on a 52-yard subject aim by kicker Greg Zuerlein with 1:25 left within the first half. The Jets had transformed on fourth-and-1 earlier within the drive however finally needed to accept a subject aim.
TE Pharaoh Brown: The third-string tight finish led all Patriots receivers with 71 yards on two catches. His 58-yard catch-and-run got here off of some good utilization of play motion out of 13 personnel when the Jets had been anticipating run. He additionally added a 13-yard catch.
LB Matthew Judon: Judon completed with two sacks, although he bought credit score for touching Wilson after the QB had already downed himself on the primary one. But Judon recurrently introduced stress towards a depleted Jets offensive line.
CB Christian Gonzalez: No check is just too troublesome for the rookie cornerback, who has needed to face A.J. Brown, Devonta Smith, Tyreek Hill, Jaylen Waddle and Garrett Wilson in his first three video games. Gonzalez helped to neutralize Wilson on Sunday because the Patriots’ protection held him to 4 catches on seven targets for 19 yards. He additionally broke up a go meant for Allen Lazard.
LS Joe Cardona: It was raining fairly exhausting at instances Sunday at MetLife Stadium, however Cardona had two pricey excessive snaps on missed subject objectives.
WR JuJu Smith-Schuster: It was one other quiet day for the free-agent pickup, who caught one go on three targets for five yards and was penalized for an unlawful blindside block. He fell down late within the recreation when he was focused on a key third-and-6 go.
CB Myles Bryant: It was an up-and-down efficiency for Bryant, pressured into exterior duties with Jonathan Jones, Jack Jones and Marcus Jones all out. He had a go breakup and made a pleasant deal with on Garrett Wilson halfway via the fourth quarter. He whiffed on a deal with later in that very same drive and was charged with the go interference penalty.