Special Teams- Heading into today's game, the Patriots look to have the advantage on special teams as Nick Folk is now officially back in his role as place kicker. The Jets special teams unit might not be very in sync yet as they had to bring in a new punter after Braden Mann was injured last week. Last week rookie kicker Matt Amendola did a great job filling in as punter. Punting in a game for the first time at any level, Amendola was busy with 6 successful punts, two of which were inside the 20. This week the Jets picked up longtime Saints punter Thomas Morstead. Morstead has played in 190 games and has an average of 46.5 yards per punt. Amazingly, he's only had 1 punt blocked in his career and that was back in 2011. While the Patriots special teams was mistake free last week, the punting and return game wasn't very good. On a short field where you could easily be going for it, you have to at least try to use the sideline to pin your opponent.
Mac Jones looked pretty dang good in his debut. He finished the game with a quarterback rating of 102.6. That's pretty impressive considering how Josh McDaniels didn't put him in position to throw for touchdowns and the offensive line was the weakest link.
Spreading the Ball Around- Both rookies spread the ball around last week. Wilson targeted 9 different players and connected with 8 of them. Mac targeted 8 and connected with all of them. One of Wilson's favorite targets last week was Braxton Berrios, you remember him. Hopefully, he doesn't become the difference maker. Wilson's most productive receiver was free agent Corey Davis. Davis had 5 receptions for 97 yards and 2 touchdowns. Jamison Crowder did not play last week due to a positive Covid test. As of now it appears he is a go although he's been nursing a groin injury all week. Unlike Jones, Wilson did get the chance to throw some deep balls last week. Of course, none of them turned into receptions.
At this time, no one is for certain if Jonnu Smith will be dressed for the Patriots. Last week he caught all 5 passes thrown in his direction for a total of 42 yards. He also had one carry for 6 yards. Mac's most productive wide receiver was free agent Nelson Agholor. Agholor had 5 receptions for 72 yards and a touchdown. Since the Patriots always seem to spread the ball around, I'd fully expect that trend to continue. If we could maybe try a few passes that are 20+ yards today, that would be great.