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Examining the roster ties between Patriots, Jets

Connections remain between the two AFC East rivals.

The New England Patriots and New York Jets will meet again this Sunday in East Rutherford.

And so will the several who’ve seen the field from both sidelines.

The connections between New England and New York are not as rampant now as in previous seasons. They still, however, delve deeper than the coaching staffs, where onetime Jets hires in Bill Belichick, Dante Scarnecchia and Brian Daboll reside for the Patriots, and onetime Patriots linebackers and D-line coach Pepper Johnson resides for the Jets.

There are five familiar faces to account for on the rosters of the AFC East rivals as well.

Let’s revisit them leading up to the 4:25 p.m. ET kickoff at MetLife Stadium.


Trevor Reilly, linebacker – The Patriots made a practice-squad swap of 2014 Jets draft picks on Oct. 20. It was then that a former fourth-rounder in wideout Shaq Evans was released, and Reilly, a seventh-rounder from that year’s class, was signed following a successful tryout. Reilly had appeared in 29 games over the course of his first two seasons with New York, collecting 31 tackles, one sack and one forced fumble along the way. But before the start of 2016, the Jets waived-injured and ultimately released Reilly with an injury settlement after the Utah product reverted to injured reserve.


Jeremy Ross, wide receiver – Ross, who re-signed with the Jets on Tuesday, has been a member of seven NFL teams. And back in the summer of 2011, New England marked his first. The Patriots signed the California Golden Bears wideout and returner as an undrafted rookie that July. Though after three preseason games, Ross was waived as cutdowns commenced.

Anthony Johnson, defensive tackle – It appeared as though Johnson, who’d also made stops with the Miami Dolphins and Washington Redskins since entering the league as an undrafted free agent in 2014, would be on the outside looking in as the Patriots’ roster trimmed to 53 players. But the May signing made a case for his work as an interior pass-rusher in the preseason, and earned a place on New England’s active roster to begin the regular season in result. Johnson went on to appear in three games for the Patriots while moving up and down from the practice squad, registering six tackles. But on Nov. 9, the former LSU Tiger was signed by the Jets off New England’s 10-man scout team. He’s since recorded three tackles through two games with his new club.

Darryl Roberts, cornerback – The Patriots landed Roberts with pick No. 247 overall in the 2015 draft, but the athletic Marshall corner would not go on to play in a regular-season game for the organization. A wrist injury sent Roberts to injured reserve before his rookie season could begin, and before his second got underway, he was waived by New England at the cut to 53. The Jets claimed Roberts the next day. The 25-year-old has played in six games and started one for New York this campaign, notching 11 tackles to go with four passes defended.

Darrelle Revis, cornerback – For 363 days, Revis was a Patriot. And while brief, it was not uneventful. After signing a one-year, $12 million deal that included a $20 million option on March 12, 2014, Revis proceeded to start all 19 games for New England through the postseason. He broke up 16 passes and intercepted three. He forced a fumble. He earned his sixth Pro Bowl and fifth first-team All-Pro honor. He won a Super Bowl. But by March 10, 2015, No. 24 was a Patriot no more. The Jets re-signed their 2007 first-round pick to a five-year, $70 million contract with $39 million guaranteed. But time has gleaned perspective. Revis, now 31, has two passes defended over nine starts this season after earning his seventh Pro Bowl selection last season.