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Meet the Patriots’ Week 7 opponent, the New York Jets

Related: Examining the roster ties between Patriots, Jets ahead of Week 7

NFL: AUG 24 Preseason - Saints at Jets Photo by Joshua Sarner/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Following their Thursday night victory over the visiting New York Giants, the New England Patriots will have ten days between games: the team will not return to the gridiron until next Monday, for a second straight prime time game against a team from the Big Apple. The upcoming opponent, of course, is the New York Jets who are heading into the second matchup with the Patriots already this season coming off their first win of the year.

With that in mind, let’s take a closer look at New England’s Week 7 opponent.

Record: 1-4 (3rd place AFC East)

Offense: 31st (12.6 points/game)

Defense: 21st (24.6 points/game)

Head coach: Adam Gase

Coordinators: Dowell Loggains (OC), Gregg Williams (DC)

Games so far

Week 1 vs Buffalo Bills: L 17-16

Week 2 vs Cleveland Browns: L 23-3

Week 3 at New England Patriots: L 30-14

Week 4 Bye

Week 5 at Philadelphia Eagles: L 31-6

Week 6 vs Dallas Cowboys: W 24-22

The Jets started well into their season and jumped to a 16-0 lead against the Buffalo Bills on opening day. However, things quickly started to deteriorate and the team lost 17-16 while also having to watch Sam Darnold go down with mononucleosis during the week after the game. Without its starting quarterback and his backup Trevor Siemian, who tore his Achilles tendon in Week 2, New York lost each of its next three games in blowout fashion. Darnold returned last week, and the Jets promptly improved to 1-4.

Three storylines that describe the 2019 season

The new staff: Coming off a 4-12 campaign, the Jets decided to part ways with head coach Todd Bowles and general manager Mike Maccagnan. Adam Gase was brought in to fill Bowles’ role, with Joe Douglas joining New York as its new GM. The early results, however, were not exactly encouraging: Gase, who reportedly had not been the club’s first choice, was a controversial hire almost immediately and the first five games of the season have done little to help his standing.

Sam Darnold vs mono: As noted above, the Jets’s second-year passer was diagnosed with mononucleosis after the team’s Week 1 loss against Buffalo. As a result, Darnold was forced to sit out three games during which New York’s offense was downright putrid: the unit scored only one touchdown while being led briefly by Trevor Siemian and later by the since-released Luke Falk. Darnold’s return, however, kick-started the team’s offense as the quarterback completed 71.9% (23 of 32) of his passes in Week 6 while throwing for 338 yards and two touchdowns with one interception.

An inconsistent defense: With the offense struggling between the third quarter of the opening game and Darnold’s return against Dallas, the defense had to carry the team — something it failed to do, which was not surprising considering the circumstances. However, the unit did have its ups alongside its downs: all in all, it ranks in the upper half of the NFL in turnovers as well as points and yards per drive.

Three players to know

TE Chris Herndon: After missing the first four weeks of the season because of a suspension, and Week 6 with a roster exemption, the Jets’ number one tight end is back now. Herndon is coming off a strong rookie season during which the 23-year-old caught 39 passes for 502 yards and four touchdowns — second on the team in each category behind wide receiver Robby Anderson. Needless to say that the Patriots will need to pay special attention to the former fourth-round draft pick.

LB C.J. Mosley: In his first game with the Jets, the high-priced free agency acquisition recorded a pick-six and quickly made his impact felt. However, Mosley also injured his groin and had to miss the next four games — including the one against New England — because of the injury. The 27-year-old is not guaranteed to play on Monday, but he would undoubtably add talent to New York’s inconsistent defense.

SS Jamal Adams: Arguably the Jets’ best player, Adams recorded a pick-six against Patriots backup quarterback Jarrett Stidham in Week 3 and also had a game-deciding quarterback pressure against the Cowboys last Sunday. A versatile defender that sees most of his action as a box safety, the sixth-overall pick of the 2017 draft has proven himself a playmaker and leader in New York — one that regularly makes an impact in the running and the passing game.

What to watch this week

The Patriots did not have to face Sam Darnold and Chris Herndon in Week 3, and the matchup between those two — Darnold in particular given his position — and New England’s top-ranked defense projects to be a fun battle. The Patriots should have the upper hand based on sheer talent, depth and scheme, but don’t be surprised if those new-look Jets are able to make their fair share of plays as well.