Merciful endings: Jets put an end to Patriots losing streak, and disappointing season
The Jets win their season finale and end their 15-game losing streak to the Patriots. Plus, closing the book on a disastrous year.
What’s Up with the Jets? 🛩️
The Jets closed out the 2023-24 season with a 17-3 victory over the Patriots in Foxborough (box)
With the win, the Jets officially ended their 15-game losing streak against New England dating back to the 2015 season
New York will select 10th overall in the 2024 NFL Draft
RB Breece Hall went ballistic in his final game of the season, carrying the ball 37 times for 178 rushing yards and a touchdown along with two catches for 12 yards
With his efforts on Sunday, Hall became the 4th running back in franchise history to eclipse 1,500 yards in a single season
QB Trevor Siemian went 8/20 (40 percent) for 70 yards with no touchdowns or turnovers in the win
WR Garrett Wilson caught two passes for 34 yards and exited the game with a possible concussion
DE Bryce Huff had 2.5 sacks and five quarterback hits in the win, giving him double-digit sacks (10.5) for the first time in his career
New York finishes the season at 7-10, their 8th consecutive losing season and 4th straight with double-digit losses
CB Sauce Gardner and DL Quinnen Williams were both named to the Pro Bowl, each for the second time in their careers
Earlier in the week, the Jets and Dalvin Cook mutually parted ways – Cook later signed with the Ravens practice squad
Game Balls 🏈
🏈 Breece Hall: Are you kidding me? In a game that the Jets had nothing but pride to play for, with Trevor Siemian under center, a beat-up and bottom-five offensive line, an active blizzard and Bill Belichick on the other sideline knowing that the Jets were going to do nothing but run the ball… Breece Hall just did THAT.
It was a day of career-highs for the young Jets back, carrying the ball a career-high 37 times, catching two passes and gaining a career-high 190 yards from scrimmage with a touchdown. Need we remind you that this was this guy’s first season coming off an ACL injury? Unbelievable.
🏈 Bryce Huff: Whether it’s the Jets or not (if it’s not, shame on them), this man is going to get paid this offseason. Huff completed his sterling 2023-24 season with another disruptive performance on Sunday afternoon by registering 2.5 sacks, making three total tackles and producing five quarterback hits. All in all, it was a phenomenal season for the defensive end who was finally unleashed by this Jets staff as he reached double-digit sacks for the first time in his career.
Play of the Week 📺
With the game all-but iced following an interception by the defense, Breece Hall finished his monstrous performance in style with one final home run play.
Hall, who had 190 yards on the afternoon, ripped off a 50-yard run for a touchdown and an exclamation point on his remarkable comeback season.
That’s all, folks ✍️
The fat lady has sung – the 2023-24 New York Jets season has mercifully come to an end.
When this season began, no one would have ever expected that the end of the season would have come as a relief. Most would have guessed it would’ve likely ended in agony with a tough loss in the postseason, or if you were less bullish perhaps a late-season loss to be eliminated from playoff contention. In this Jets season, however, the anguish ended long ago.
While the club wasn’t officially eliminated from postseason eligibility until mid-December and saw themselves with a winning record entering Week 9, this season really came to an end on the night it officially began.
This year was supposed to be different for a franchise that oh so often had been so woebegone. Aaron Rodgers, a Hall of Fame quarterback just one calendar removed from winning an MVP, was here and unlike his Green Bay predecessor actually chose them. With Rodgers on board, Joe Douglas and the Jets had finally seemed to solve this organization’s 50-year quarterback search as they appeared to vault themselves into Super Bowl contention.
The hype was real – Rodgers was here and making headlines, the team was chosen to star on ‘Hard Knocks’ and selected for a whopping six nationally televised games. In a twist of fate that was so quintessential “Jets,” one that has been covered ad nauseam over these last four months, that unbridled hope lasted just minutes into their season opener.
From the moment Aaron Rodgers went down, there was a pit in the stomach of every single Jets fan in this world. The nightmare had become a reality, the other shoe had dropped, and all in the most dramatic way possible – after so many months of hype and excitement, Rodgers tore his Achilles before ever completing a single pass. Then and there, it was all over. And ironically enough, this newsletter was born from that all-too-familiar Jets despair.
Zach Wilson took over and while there were some good moments in there – they did win that opener after all in addition to hanging with the Chiefs and knocking off the undefeated Eagles – we all knew deep down that there wasn’t much hope. The Jets couldn’t win with smoke and mirrors for a full season, and as the weeks went on the cracks continued to show and those good moments came fewer and fewer. Before we knew it the Jets found themselves in yet another full-fledged collapse, losing five straight games as their season careened to it’s oblivion. Questions once again raised about the head coach Robert Saleh, offensive coordinator Nathaniel Hackett, quarterback Zach Wilson and general manager Joe Douglas. Many of those questions still remain to this day, but we already know that all but Wilson will be returning thanks to a mulligan season courtesy of owner Woody Johnson.
Where will the Jets turn on offense? They need to rebuild their entire offensive line, with only Alijah Vera-Tucker (coming off of his second straight season-ending surgery) and Joe Tippmann as guarantees to return. Outside of Garrett Wilson, the receiving corps is an absolute mess after Corey Davis retired while Allen Lazard and Randall Cobb shit the bed and Mecole Hardman was dumped in an early-season trade. And how is the play-calling going to improve if Nathaniel Hackett isn’t going to be held accountable for authoring one of the worst offenses we’ve seen in modern NFL history? Aaron Rodgers’ return helps the Jets tremendously, but it can’t solve everything and that is a lot to solve. Not to mention… what if he gets hurt again?
Some positives to look back on from this season: Garrett Wilson and Breece Hall are absolute monsters – putting up the numbers they did with the worst quarterback play in the league, especially Hall coming off a torn ACL last season, is just ridiculous – Bryce Huff, Jermaine Johnson and Quinnen Williams were all demons up front, Sauce Gardner and DJ Reed continued to be one of the league’s best cornerback duos, Michael Carter II is probably the best nickel corner in the NFL, Greg Zuerlein and Thomas Morestead were incredible on special teams, and Jeff Ulbrich has turned himself into an awesome defensive coordinator.
Another positive: I never have to watch Zach Wilson take another snap for this franchise ever again.
There is a lot to be discussed and decided over the months ahead entering another season that will unquestionably come with hype, albeit a lot more cautiously this time around. For me personally, while I don’t want to be overly pessimistic or negative, I do think this season has taught me to be more emotionally guarded when it comes to this football team that has more often looked cursed than Super Bowl ready in my lifetime. I do believe this is a team that can get themselves to the position we thought they were in entering this season, but right now I’m in a “til I see it” mindset.
It’s hard to get myself to fully buy into the hope again after the most disappointing, heartbreaking and deflating sports season of my entire life. But have no fears… when football is ready to be played again, I’ll be there. Ready or not.
Around the NFL 🏁
In a win-and-in game, the Jaguars completed their collapse with a 28-20 loss to the Titans and were eliminated from postseason contention
Thanks to their win on Saturday, the Steelers clinched a postseason berth following the Jaguars loss
The Texas defeated the Colts by a 23-19 score on Saturday to clinch a postseason spot and, following the Jaguars loss, win the NFC South division title
Rams WR Puka Nakua broke the all-time rookie receiving record as the team rallied for a late come-from-behind win over QB Sam Darnold and the 49ers
The Bills overcame three turnovers from Josh Allen to come-from-behind in the 4th quarter to defeat the Dolphins, 21-14, and win the AFC East
The Cowboys rode their late-season surge to a 38-10 blowout victory over the Commanders and an NFC East division championship
The Eagles late year slide continued as they were blown out by the Giants with QB Jalen Hurts and WR A.J. Brown both exiting with injuries
QB Jordan Love and the Packers outlasted Justin Fields and the Bears with a 17-9 victory, clinching a postseason berth in Love’s first season as the team’s starter