The Patriots and Jets have been competing against each other since 1960, but the rivalry really heated up during the week leading up to Super Bowl XXXI between the Packers and Patriots. New England coach Bill Parcells, whose contract would expire after the game, had been feuding with team owner Bob Kraft for much of the season over how much say Parcells would have over player personnel decisions. The Jets soon hired Parcells as a consultant and agreed to make his top assistant -- Bill Belichick -- the head coach. Kraft filed tampering charges against the Jets. Ultimately, commissioner Paul Tagliabue intervened, awarding four draft picks to the Patriots and allowing Parcells to coach the Jets immediately.
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After Bill Parcells left the Patriots for the Jets, New England hired Pete Carroll as its new coach. Carroll had spent one season coaching the Jets (1994), where he got off to a 6-4 start, but lost his last six games to finish 6-10. In three seasons coaching the Patriots, Carroll went 27-21 with two playoff appearances.
3 of 13Walter Iooss Jr./SI, Bob Rosato/SI
After spending his first three seasons with the Patriots, Curtis Martin signed a $36 million, six-year offer sheet with the Jets. The Patriots failed to match the offer and received a first- and third-round draft pick as compensation. Martin would rush for 1,000 yards in each of his first seven seasons with the Jets and finish his career as the team's all-time leading rusher (10,302 yards).
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Belichick became coach of the Jets in 1999, after Parcells resigned to take over as GM. But during his introductory press conference, Belichick wrote on a sheet of loose leaf paper, ''I resign as HC of the NYJ'' and spent the next half-hour explaining his decision. He was hired as head coach of the Patriots several days later. The Jets filed tampering chargers and were granted a first-round pick as compensation.
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Mo Lewis' hit on Drew Bledsoe
No moment in Patriots history had a bigger impact on the organization than Mo Lewis' hit on Drew Bledsoe during Week 2 of the 2001 season. Second-year quarterback Tom Brady replaced Bledsoe and went on to become one of the NFL's all-time greats.
6 of 13Bob Rosato/SI, AP
Eric Mangini began his career as a ball boy for the Bill Belichick-coached Cleveland Browns and later worked in the team's PR department. Belichick admired Mangini's work ethic and promoted him to help with the team's video scouting. He worked with Belichick at the Jets from 1997 to 1999 and then as New England's defensive backs coach from 2000 to 04 and as its defensive coordinator in 2005. After the 2005 season, Mangini was hired as the Jets' new head coach.
7 of 13David Bergman/SI
Before the 2007 season, the Patriots tried unsuccessfully to sign a new contract with top receiver Deion Branch. After the two reached a stalemate, the team traded him to Seattle and filed tampering charges against the Jets for allegedly engaging in contract discussions with Branch while he was still a Patriot. The NFL cleared the Jets of all charges.
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The rivalry hit a new level after the first week of the 2007 season, when New York accused New England of illegally videotaping the Jets' defensive coaches' signals. The incident, better known as Spygate, cast doubts on the Patriots three Super Bowl victories and permanently tarnished Belichick's legacy. For the infraction, the NFL fined the Patriots coach $500,000, fined the team $250,000 and forced the Patriots to surrender their 2008 first-round draft choice. In 2008, former Patriots video assistant Matt Walsh (inset) sent eight videotapes containing opponents' coaches' signals from the 2000 through 2002 seasons to commissioner Roger Goodell.
9 of 13David Bergman/SI, Heinz Kluetmeier/SI
Brett Favre and Matt Cassel
In Week 2, the Jets and new quarterback Brett Favre hosted the Patriots and their new starting QB, Matt Cassel, who was replacing the injured Tom Brady. Despite the mismatch in experience, the Patriots controlled the game and pulled out a 19-10 victory.
10 of 13Peter Read Miller/SI
Before a Week 11 rematch in New England, the Jets signed former Patriot Ty Law to play cornerback. The Jets raced out to a 24-6 lead, but Matt Cassell connected with Randy Moss with one second left in regulation to force overtime. In the extra period, the Jets drove down the field and won on a 34-year Jay Feely field goal.
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Rex Ryan and Bill Belichick
After the Jets fired Mangini, the team hired the outspoken Rex Ryan to replace him. Ryan immediately embraced the rivalry, appearing on New York radio and saying, "I never came here to kiss Bill Belichick's, you know, rings. I came to win. Let's just put it that way. So we'll see what happens. I'm certainly not intimidated by New England or anybody else." In the three games the teams have played since Ryan was hired, the Jets have won two of them.
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In 2010, the Jets became the subject of HBO's reality series, Hard Knocks . The show, which was a huge hit, highlighted the boisterous Rex Ryan and his outspoken team. Not everyone was a fan, however. When asked about the show during a Boston radio appearance, Tom Brady said, "I hate the Jets. I refuse to support that show ... I'm sure it's great TV and I'm glad people are liking it. But that's something I have no interest in watching. I'd love to say a lot of mean things, too, but I'd rather not do that, either."
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One of the most interesting plot lines of Hard Knocks was Danny Woodhead's quest to make the roster. The 5-foot-7 running back was a favorite of coach Rex Ryan, but there were lingering doubts about whether he could be an effective player at his height. Though he made the roster out of training camp, he was waived by the team after Week 1. He was signed by the Patriots four days later before their game against the Jets. In nine games, he has accumulated over 550 yards of total offense and four touchdowns.
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