The likes of Bill Belichick, Mick Lombardi and Leon Washington reside on the coaching staffs.
Here’s a glance through those ties as the 1 p.m. ET kickoff nears.
Braxton Berrios, wide receiver — The Patriots turned the draft card in for Berrios at No. 210 overall back in 2018. The receiver and returner by way of the Miami Hurricanes spent his rookie year on injured reserve and was claimed by the Jets entering his second. Berrios, who collected a Super Bowl LIII ring during his New England stint, has since appeared in 33 games with New York. On offense, the 25-year-old has totaled 48 catches for 560 yards and three touchdowns. On special teams, he’s returned 32 punts for 341 yards along with 13 kickoffs for 215 yards.
Conor McDermott, offensive tackle — Placed on injured reserve by the Jets as the calendar turned to September, McDermott was once the final selection in a 2017 Patriots draft class of four. The tackle out of UCLA would be waived following his rookie preseason and claimed by the Buffalo Bills. And in the division McDermott remained when the Jets were awarded him off the wire in 2019. The 28-year-old has since appeared in 22 games and started three during his time with New York. McDermott played 25 percent of the Jets’ offensive downs in 2020.
Adrian Colbert, safety — The Jets signed Colbert to the practice squad after the 27-year-old safety was released by the Patriots during the reduction from 80. Colbert served as a standard elevation in Week 1, handling 34 snaps on defense and 20 snaps on special teams. He had agreed to terms with New England in May, and recorded an interception during the preseason. Colbert originally entered the NFL in the seventh round of the 2017 draft out of Miami and Texas. He has also been a member of the San Francisco 49ers, Seattle Seahawks, Miami Dolphins, Kansas City Chiefs and New York Giants.
Matt LaCosse, tight end — The Patriots signed the 28-year-old LaCosse to the practice squad at its formation to begin September. He had been among New England’s Covid-19 opt-outs in 2020 after catching 13 passes for 131 yards and one touchdown the year prior. But the NFL run began in East Rutherford for LaCosse, who joined the Giants as an undrafted rookie in 2015 and spent six days in the other locker room as a Jet that August. The tight end from Illinois later reconvened with the Giants before making his way to the Denver Broncos.
Henry Anderson, defensive tackle — The Jets released the 30-year-old Anderson in the weeks leading up to free agency this spring. The transaction saved New York north of $8 million, and it led to a two-year $7 million deal with New England. The versatile 3-4 defensive lineman out of Stanford entered the league the third round of the 2015 draft with the Indianapolis Colts. He was later traded to New York during the 2018 draft. Anderson has played in 75 games and made 43 starts through those tours. He’s had a hand in 167 tackles, 11.5 sacks, a forced fumble and a fumble recovery, plus four blocks.
Harvey Langi, linebacker — Langi checks in on the active roster for New England despite a procedural move at the 53-man deadline. The linebacker does so after an August in which he recorded 18 tackles, one sack and an interception. Langi originally entered the league as an undrafted rookie with the Patriots in 2017. Now 28, the Brigham Young product spent the last three campaigns with New York before returning to New England. Langi saw north of 500 snaps on defense and 200 snaps in the kicking game last year for the Jets. He went on injured reserve in December due to a neck injury.
Nick Folk, kicker — At age 36, Folk begins 2021 on the New England practice squad. But the veteran served as a standard elevation in the opener, making all three of his field goals and lone extra point after twice being named AFC Special Teams Player of the Week last year. Along the way came a career-best 92.9 percentage and a game-winning 51-yarder against his former Jets. Folk appeared in 104 games for New York dating back to 2010. He was released after seven seasons, and made subsequent stops with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Arizona Hotshots before finding himself in Foxborough in the fall of 2019.