Just one look at Rex Ryan's postgame news conference told the whole story of the way things went for the New York Jets on Sunday afternoon in Foxboro. The always positive coach sported a somber look while answering questions from the press, showing the face of a heartbroken man who was within seconds of pulling off one of the biggest upsets of the young season.
After a Devin McCourty fumble allowed the Jets to regain possession following a game-tying field goal, Gang Green surged ahead by three points courtesy of a 41-yard kick by Nick Folk. The 1:45 remaining on the clock after the go-ahead score was all Tom Brady would need to tie the game. Marching down the field in their no-huddle offense, the Patriots put kicker Stephen Gostkowski in a position to tie the game. Much to the chagrin of Ryan who earlier issued a statement regarding the unfairness of the no-huddle offense, the Patriots were able to do the same in overtime.
On the ensuing Jets possession, Mark Sanchez was sacked and fumbled the football. The recovery by Rob Ninkovich would secure the game for New England.
Despite the heart wrenching loss, the Jets can take away a few positives from the game, namely from their offensive weapons.
TE Dustin Keller
Coming back from injury, Keller has become a valuable asset to the Jets' offense. While many questioned how the loss of Holmes would hurt the team, Keller has stepped up in a big way to fill in the gap left by the former Super Bowl MVP. Keller finished the day with seven receptions for 93 yards and one touchdown. The star tight end has left no doubt that he is fully healed from his injury.
K Nick Folk
After securing the starting kicking position during training camp, Folk has kept the Jets in close games with the power of his leg. On Sunday, Folk continued his kicking dominance by nailing each field goal he attempted and accounted for 14 of the 26 points that the Jets were able to score.
SS LaRon Landry
Known for being a hard-hitting defender, Landry imposed his will in the defensive backfield. He finished the day with 12 tackles, including clutch stops that could have resulted in big gains. His totals led the team in that category.
The offensive line
The Jets offensive line was unable to protect Sanchez from Vince Wilfork and company throughout the contest. A costly second quarter pass-rush resulted in a botched hand off to Shonn Greene. Sanchez had to kick the ball out of the end zone to keep the Patriots from scoring a touchdown. The play resulted in a safety.
O.C. Tony Sparano
The final goat is Tony Sparano and his atrocious play-calling throughout the game. When the Jets were marching down the field through the passing game, he would run the ball at the end and come up short. Conversely, when the running game is what led the way, Sparano would call a passing play that resulted in failed yardage. One distinct example was when the Jets marched their way on the legs of Greene and threw to the end zone on 3rd and short. The playcalling cost the Jets numerous times and ultimately lost them the game.