By Steve Kallas
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One of the most quoted sayings (to this day) in NFL history comes from the great Bill Parcells, “You are what your record says you are.” Truer words were never spoken, right?
But it says here that Parcells’ famous saying isn’t necessarily true this season.
THE GREEN BAY PACKERS
Everybody by now knows the brutal call on the last play of the Packers vs. Seahawks game, which cost the Packers a victory.
Confused replacement officials and lack of knowledge of the rules made the NFL buckle to public pressure and negotiate with the real officials to get them back on the field.
But what does that mean vis-à-vis the great quote from Bill Parcells?
Well it says, the Packers are not a 3-3 team. They are better than that and just because of a brutal game-ending, it’s hard to regard them as a .500 team.
WHICH BRINGS US TO THE NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS
As many of the New York Jets fans know, the AFC East is now being painted as a toss-up. The Jets (3-3) are tied for first with the hated Patriots, Buffalo Bills and Miami Dolphins.
But are the Patriots, like the Packers, really a 3-3 team? In Week Two, the Arizona Cardinals outplayed the Patriots. Leading 20-18 late in the game, the Cardinals fumbled the ball and the Patriots recovered on the Arizona 30 yard line with 1:01 to play in the game.
Then the Patriots’ Danny Woodhead runs for 30 yards untouched into the end zone, seemingly wrapping up a win for the Patriots.
But a holding call on Rob Gronkowski nullified the TD and eventually, the Patriots would miss a field goal to win the game.
Mike Pereira, the former NFL Vice President of Officiating, said that was the call of an inexperienced official. Pereira stated, that should have been a touchdown and although it was not the last play of the game, it would have put the Patriots up five with less than a minute to play in the game.
A week later, the Patriots were on the road against the Ravens. Having outplayed the Ravens for most of the game, Ravens’ placekicker Justin Tucker lines up for what will be a game-winning 27-yard field goal.
Tucker kicks the ball wide right and according to the officials the kick is good and cannot be reviewed because it went directly over the right goal post.
After the game a review of the kick clearly shows that the ball was moving to the right as it went off Tucker’s foot.
Assuming it would have hit the right goal post, there is virtually no way that the kick would have been good. It either would have grazed the outside of the right goal post or missed it right all together which would have been another Patriots win.
WHAT DOES ALL OF THIS MEAN FOR JETS VS. PATRIOTS?
Well, it means the Jets and Patriots are simply not identical football teams. The Patriots are changing the way the game is played; they’ve reincorporated the running game, making their offense even more dangerous than it has been in the last few years.
But more importantly, the Patriots have perfected the no-huddle offense. The future is now for the no-huddle and the Patriots are the leaders of the new “movement.” The no-huddle is becoming a common offense, not just something you do late in the game when the clock is against you.
So, the Jets’ defense really has their work cut out for them.
On the other side of the ball, most haven’t seen the improved Patriots’ defense. The Patriots have a vey good front seven, which is sixth in the NFL against the run. It will be the Patriots front seven against the Jets’ ground and pound running game.
Wile the Patriots weakness is clearly their secondary, the Jets don’t seem to have the firepower to do a lot of damage in that regard. Whether it’s the offensive line’s fault or the inability of Mark Sanchez to progress, nobody fears the Jets’ passing game.
CAN TIM TEBOW CHANGE THE GAME?
Well, Tebow has shown flashes of hope in the Jets’ offense, you have to think that the Patriots will be ready for Tebow. But he can be a difference-maker, enough to help the Jets win? Unlikely.
Unfortunately, there simply doesn’t seem to be any team in the AFC East that can seriously challenge the Patriots. The Jets haven’t moved forward, the Bills are too up and down and Miami is playing a rookie QB who is also up and down.
The Patriots’ defense will only improve as the season gets longer because of their coaching staff. And as for the Jets, they still don’t have an identity, which bodes poorly for them this season.
What are you predictions for the Jets vs. Patriots game? Share your predictions below.