Jets choke against Patriots to keep Trevor Lawrence dream alive

The tank lives. It looked like the Jets might do the unthinkable and win a game Monday night, but they blew it, falling 30-27 to the Patriots at MetLife Stadium. Former Jets kicker Nick Folk made a

The tank lives.

It looked like the Jets might do the unthinkable and win a game Monday night, but they blew it, falling 30-27 to the Patriots at MetLife Stadium.

Former Jets kicker Nick Folk made a 51-yard field goal as time expired to give the Patriots the win. It was set up by a 20-yard pass by Patriots quarterback Cam Newton to receiver Jakobi Meyers, who had 12 catches for 169 yards in the game.

The Jets blew a 10-point, fourth-quarter lead thanks to a Joe Flacco interception, a defense that could not stop the Patriots late when it needed to and the offense going three-and-out when it got the ball with less than two minutes left.

The Jets fell to 0-9 for the first time in franchise history. It is the first time the Jets have had a nine-game losing streak during one season. It is the second-longest losing streak in team history. The Jets lost 12 straight games over the 1995 and ’96 seasons.

The loss is good news for Jets fans dreaming of Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence in next spring’s draft and in favor of Tanking for Trevor. For a while, it looked like the Jets were going to win and fall into a tie with the one-win Jaguars. Then, they reverted to form.

The Jets held an improbable 27-17 lead entering the fourth quarter. It felt like the Patriots were threatening when they mounted a 17-play drive that began in the third quarter. It looked like the Jets were going to turn back into the team we’re used to watching when after Patriots quarterback Newton stumbled on third-and-1 to set up a field-goal attempt, the Jets were penalized for having 12 men on the field. But the Jets defense held firm and stopped a Newton scramble on third down and held the Patriots to a 29-yard field goal that cut the Jets lead to 27-20.

Joe Flacco is sacked by the Patriots.Getty Images

On the first play of the next drive, Flacco took a deep shot to rookie Denzel Mims that was intercepted by Patriots cornerback J.C. Jackson at the Patriots’ 28 with 5:50 left in the game. Flacco had success most of the night with deep passes, but this one burned him.

It looked like the Jets had New England stopped after a Newton incompletion on third down, but a holding penalty on Jets cornerback Bless Austin gave the Patriots a first down and new life. Newton threw a 19-yard pass to Meyers, who killed the Jets all night, on third-and-20 and then converted fourth-and-1 with a sneak to keep the drive going.

It was another Newton sneak from the 1-yard line that tied the game at 27-27 with 1:57 left in the fourth quarter.

The Jets got the ball back but went three and out for the first time in the game, giving Newton the ball back with 47 seconds left.

The Jets stalled him for a little, but then Newton found Meyers for a 20-yard pass to the 33 against a soft defense. That was all Folk needed to boot the game winner.

It was a brutal ending to the Jets’ best-played game of the season. The Jets could not have asked for a better first half. They moved the ball better on offense than they have all year and got critical stops on defense. The Jets had 244 yards at halftime, more than they had total in each of their last two games.

Flacco was nearly flawless. He went 12 of 17 passing for 194 yards and two touchdowns in the half.

On their first drive, the Jets used a heavy dose of Frank Gore running the ball but also showed a hint of what was to come with a 26-yard pass from Flacco to Mims. The drive lasted 12 plays and went 58 yards before they stalled on the Patriots 17 and had to settle for a Sergio Castillo 35-yard field goal to go up 3-0. It was the Jets’ first lead over the Patriots at any time in their last four meetings.

New England answered with a touchdown drive. Newton picked the Jets apart with a lot of short throws in the game as it looked like the Jets strategy was to force him to throw instead of using his legs. When the Patriots got close to the goal line, though, Newton ran the ball and scored a 5-yard touchdown to push New England ahead 7-3.

Flacco then began to show he can still throw deep. He found Breshad Perriman for a 50-yard touchdown pass with 9:59 left in the second quarter. It was Perriman’s first touchdown as a Jet and the team’s eighth offensive touchdown this season and fifth passing touchdown. The score put the Jets back ahead 10-7.

The Jets defense then got a stop to help the offense out. Defensive tackle Foley Fatukasi blew up a fourth-and-1 run by James White, stopping him and causing him to fumble for a 4-yard loss and a turnover on downs.

Flacco took another deep shot, this one to Mims, but it fell incomplete and Castillo was called on to kick a 50-yard field goal to make it 13-7.

The Jets held the Patriots to a field goal on their next drive, a 45-yard kick by Folk that cut the score to 13-10 with 1:03 left in the first half.

The Jets used two timeouts wisely during the Patriots’ drive to give them a chance at scoring before halftime. Flacco again pushed things. He took another shot to Perriman. It was not complete but Patriots cornerback Jason McCourty was called for pass interference, a 42-yard penalty. On the next play, Flacco made a beautiful 20-yard touchdown throw to Jamison Crowder, who was initially ruled out of bounds but the review showed he got his two feet in on a pretty catch. The Jets went into halftime with a 20-10 lead, their second halftime lead of the season and loads of confidence.

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