The New England Patriots will look to avenge an early season loss at the Meadowlands when they face the rival New York Jets on Monday Night at Gillette Stadium. Both teams come into the game at 9-2, tied for the best record in the NFL, along with the Atlanta Falcons. Despite their records, the game could end up meaning the difference between home field advantage throughout the playoffs and a first round road game, as the team that loses the division race would end up as the fifth seed at best.
With all of that on the line, it would make the loss a devastating blow to either team, but it would be more crushing to the Patriots. If the Jets win, they will have gone 2-0 against the Patriots and will own the tiebreaker, meaning New England will have to finish with a better record than them to take the division crown. To do this, they would have to gain two games on the Jets in the final four weeks of the season. It wouldn’t be impossible, just highly improbable.
When the teams finally meet on Monday Night, they will have a completely different look than they did in their first meeting way back in week two. Obviously, the Patriots have gone through some monumental changes, after the trade of Randy Moss and the subsequent re-acquisition of Deion Branch. The moves, combined with a change in offensive philosophy, has them looking more like the teams of the Super Bowl years, at least on one side of the ball.
As for the Jets, when they came into the first meeting they were without top receiver Santonio Holmes, had a hobbled Darrelle Revis, and had a huge question mark at quarterback with Mark Sanchez. Since then, Holmes has returned from suspension, Revis is healthy, and Sanchez has shown to be a solid quarterback.
Both teams are better than they were early in the year, but have the Patriots made up enough ground to close the gap and pick up a win that will change the course of the season for both of these franchises? Find out Monday night. Patriots vs. Jets tickets are now available!