The New England Patriots went into New York and totally dismantled the Jets. They did whatever they wanted, but how did they do with the three keys laid out last week? Let’s break it down.
1) Get Jakobi Meyers Involved
Getting on the same page as Tom Brady was vital, and I think the Patriots have found something in Jakobi Meyers. He caught five passes for only 47 yards, but what's important is that Brady trusted him enough to throw to him. Meyers has shown that he understands what's going on and where to be in the Patriots offense.
On the first drive of the game, Meyers found the soft spot in the middle of the field for a huge first down pickup. He caught a big first down in the red zone early in the game and he drew a couple of pass interference calls later on. He got held in the endzone which led to a Sony Michel touchdown and he got held on a double move in the fourth. We’ll see how the addition of Mohamed Sanu effects Meyers, but his play in trending upward.
2) Limit Sam Darnold
“I’m seeing ghosts.”
That quote right there summed up Sam Darnold’s night.
He was awful against the Patriots. Darnold threw four interceptions for a total of 86 yards and had a fumble and mishandled a bad snap that led to a safety. You could tell New England had zero respect for Darnold’s ability to beat them with his arm. The Patriots had 11 days to prepare and it showed.
Darnold couldn’t read where the blitzes were coming from all night, which led led to free rushers time-after-time, causing Darnold to throw off his back foot constantly. The Patriots secondary is so good that it allows them to blitz with no fear of getting beat over the top. The only way the Jets were able to move the ball was when they got the benefit of the doubt from the officials with some defensive holding calls. Just a tremendous game plan by the Patriot defense. It wasn’t ghosts you saw Sam; it was just The Boogeymen.
3) Give Tom Brady Options Downfield
Brady finished the game completing 31-of-45 passes for 249 yards, one touchdown and one interception, but his night would’ve seemed a lot better had it not been for Michel dropping a screen that would’ve been a walk-in touchdown. Julian Edelman also dropped a pass that would’ve been a big gain, but instead stalled the drive.
The 42 year old did throw a couple of vintage Brady dimes, which included an incredible throw to Brandon Bolden who caught the pass over the defender on the sideline, and a 26-yard touchdown pass to Phillip Dorsett over his shoulder. Ben Watson, after taking a pass off the face, immediately produced as he caught a big third down pass early on and also moved the chains on a fourth down pass.
But again, the passing game did struggle at times. Brady got hit on a play which resulted in his lone interception. The second half passing attack seemed like something to be desired, though that may have been a product of the score at that point in the game.
The addition of Mohamad Sanu will be huge. The offense will get better every week. Luckily, the Patriots have an all-world defense to give them time to sort things out.
All-in-all, New England was able to hit on all three of their keys which led to a dominant 33-0 win over the New York Jets. Next up is the Cleveland Browns on a short week.