Rob Celletti: January has come early, it seems, as the Jets host the Patriots in what is rightly being called the most important game played in MetLife Stadium since it opened. I expect Jets fans to answer the call and show up big, getting the Jets off to a good start, but to think they’ll roll to a double-digit victory on that energy seems a little foolish. These Jets/Patriots clashes always turn into close games, and as much as the Patriots are not the force they have been for most of the previous decade, they will come out desperate.
Both teams will need to absorb punches from the other side, and this will turn into a classic seesaw affair. The Jets defense will play well, but Brady is Brady, and he’s angry, so he’s going to will his team to a few scores. However, I expect the Jets to again thrive with a balanced offensive attack of their own against a defense that simply does not have the talent to keep up with Greene, Holmes, Keller, Burress and yes, Mark Sanchez.
A late touchdown from Sanchez to Keller (he’s gonna score again at some point this year, right?) puts the Jets ahead 27-24, a lead the Jets won’t relinquish as they move to 6-3 on the year and grab a stranglehold on the AFC East.
TJ Rosenthal: The Jets win if: They continue to exemplify balance on offense, maybe adding some better finishes to early drives. They win if Darrelle Revis shuts down Welker. The TE twins can hurt the Jets but they don’t have to destroy them. We don’t see BenJarvus Green-Ellis, even if he is the Pats focal point, ripping off 136 yards again. The Jets are tackling better now. Surrounding the ball better. Faster too. Limit yards after catch, and get the entire offense involved. That’s the formula.
The Jet lose if: Sanchez continues to make early mistakes that give the Patriots defense just enough of an engine boost to remain under 24 points given up on the day.. They lose if Welker roams free and there is poor tackling up by the Jets defensive line up front on running plays.
Chris Celletti: Right now, the Jets are a better football team than the Patriots. But New England has lost two in a row and are going to come in pissed off. You don’t want to be facing a pissed off Tom Brady. However, the Jets defense is playing as well as it ever has under Rex Ryan, and the Patriots’ defense is laughable. It really is. I expect both teams to put up points, but I think the Jets will used a balanced attack to keep Brady off the field just enough. If the Jets win the turnover battle, they win. I expect just that to happen: Jets 27, Patriots 23.
Justin Fritze: I think it’s going to come down to the Jets being able to run twice for every pass they throw. Lots of underneath stuff, a few down the sideline. I think the Jets will take this one 28-27. Jumpy Tom Brady, one interception, and about 250 passing yards by Brady. Two field goals for New England. A few glasses of red wine or three shots of Cuervo will make this game much easier to watch for all parties involved.