Before the downfall of the New York Jets after the 2010 season, Jets-Patriots was a pretty good rivalry.
The Jets, if you remember, were the ones who brought New England’s “SkyGate” operation to the NFL’s attention in 2007.
According to running back LaDainian Tomlinson, who played for New York in 2010 and 2011, coach Rex Ryan used some interesting motivational techniques to get his team pumped up to play the Pats.
He once even promised to punch Bill Belichick in the face, Tomlinson told NFL Network this morning (via PFT):
“Rex got in front of us, he said, ‘I’m going to set the tempo today, guys,’ he said, ‘I’m going to set the tempo. When I meet Bill Belichick in the center of the field, I’m going to start it off and punch him in the face.'”
It didn’t happen, obviously.
The Jets were 2-3 against New England during Tomlinson’s tenure, including a signature 28-21 win in the playoffs.
In recent years, New England has snuffed out the rivalry entirely. They’ve won four straight, the most recent of which was the 49-19 “Butt Fumble” game on Thanksgiving night last year.
The two teams play Thursday in Foxboro. They’re both 1-0 on the young season.
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