It still could be in the cards for the Jets to pick first.
No, not the No. 1 draft pick as so many predicted. The Jets nearly always play the Patriots well, even when it's obvious that New England is the better group.
Both teams are 3-2, with the Patriots' struggles almost as stunning as the Jets' early-season success. Most of the time, he still beats them on game day. "They are still the same Patriots". "They're a well-balanced team, make you defend everybody". "They're the same guys that went to the Super Bowl". The Jets counter with 38-year-old Josh McCown, who ranks second in the National Football League with a 71.4 completion percentage and he is one of seven QBs to have posted a 100+ QB rating in three or more games this season. Victory vs. Browns marked first time in McCown's 15-year career that he won three straight starts.
Still, New York recognizes it has quite a few flaws, with penalties a major issue.
As good as the Jets are the moment, "there's that lingering thought around the league that says, 'Yeah, but they're still the Jets, '" Adam Kurkjian of the Boston Herald says. "And we have to get the penalties down, which keeps hampering us every week, which has to change".
It was clear that the Jets took the Browns lightly last week.
"Some of them are ticky-tacky and some of them are legit", said Bowles. "But either way, we have to get them down". Surprisingly, their defense is struggling entering Week 6. Only Tampa Bay, with four, has less. NY hasn't allowed opponent to convert third down in red zone over last three games. He's having one of the best years he's ever had.
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Look at how the defense has played.
Overall, the Patriots have more upside as a group. Does that mean Josh McCown has 300 yards in him? The linebacker has lined up for just seven snaps all season, serving as an insurance policy the Patriots haven't needed to tap thus far. "So we have to start faster". The Patriots have outscored their opponents 148-142 on the season.
"I've been really impressed with the way they've played the last three weeks", he said, per WEEI's Ryan Hannable. We know what we have to do. Unlike the Jets, or, for that matter, the Dolphins and Bills, the Pats are 0-0 in AFC East play. Even the much maligned inside linebackers have had good games. The Patriots win this game, and it's never close. By the Jets' count, they have 32 quarterback hurries this season.
The Jets have a solid opportunity at taking control of the AFC East this weekend with a division matchup that is always circled on the calendar.
Whether the Jets are "doing a good job" is probably up for debate at this point, though.
"It's a wave right now", Williams said. Bowles said the Jets weren't yet considering adding another running back to the roster.