5 New York Jets Who Keyed Victory against New England Patriots

Jayson LoveCorrespondent IJanuary 17, 2011

5 New York Jets Who Keyed Victory against New England Patriots

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    FOXBORO, MA - JANUARY 16:  Head coach Rex Ryan of the New York Jets hugs head coach Bill Belichick of the New England Patriots after the Jets defeated the Patriots 28 to 21 in their 2011 AFC divisional playoff game at Gillette Stadium on January 16, 2011
    Jim Rogash/Getty Images

    Few gave the Jets a chance to win in Foxborough Sunday evening.

    After the humiliating 45-3 loss the last time these two teams met with the division on the line in December, defeating the Patriots seemed a pipe dream.

    These five New York Jets were the reason the Jets were able to turn it around on Sunday, and head for the AFC Championship game for the second straight year under Rex Ryan.

5. Linebacker David Harris

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    SAN DIEGO - JANUARY 17:  Running back Darren Sproles #43 of the San Diego Chargers runs with the ball as linebacker David Harris #52 of the New York Jets tackles him during the AFC Divisional Playoff Game at Qualcomm Stadium on January 17, 2010 in San Die
    Robert Laberge/Getty Images

    David Harris was credited with nine tackles on the day, good for second on the team.

    While his interception of Tom Brady on the Patriots' first drive didn't lead to points, it did stop the Pats from scoring and was a key moment for the Jets.

    It was like that moment in Rocky IV where Rocky's punch made Ivan Drago bleed. 

    It brought the great Tom Brady down to human level and let the Jets defense know that 45 points were in the past and we can actually stop Brady: He isn't a machine.

4. Running Back Shonn Greene

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    FOXBORO, MA - JANUARY 16:  Shonn Greene #23 of the New York Jets runs down field against the New England Patriots during their 2011 AFC divisional playoff game at Gillette Stadium on January 16, 2011 in Foxboro, Massachusetts.  (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty
    Jim Rogash/Getty Images

    Shonn Greene was the closer for the Jets on Sunday,

    He rushed for a game high 76 yards, and his 16-yard touchdown run sealed the Patriots' fate on Sunday, putting the Jets up 28-14.  He took some heat for the way he celebrated the TD, pretending to sleep on the ball, but the touchdown was huge for the Jets.

3. The Darrelle Revis and Antonio Cromartie Combo

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    INDIANAPOLIS, IN - JANUARY 08:  Pierre Garcon #85 of the Indianapolis Colts scores on a 57-yard touchdown reception in the second quarter against Antonio Cromartie #31 of the New York Jets during their 2011 AFC wild card playoff game at Lucas Oil Stadium
    Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

    The bookend corners took away any outside threat throughout the game, forcing Brady to look over the middle.

    Revis in particular had a huge strip on a pass intended for Deion Branch that looked for all of the world like it was going to be a key first down, setting the Patriots up deep in Jets territory.

    Cromartie (pictured) backed up his words this week and wasn't beaten for a big play all game long.

2. Quarterback Mark Sanchez

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    FOXBORO, MA - JANUARY 16:  Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots and Mark Sanchez #6 of the New York Jets walk off the field after the Jets defeated the Patriots 28 to 21 their 2011 AFC divisional playoff game at Gillette Stadium on January 16, 2011 i
    Al Bello/Getty Images

    Sanchez started off the game overthrowing open receivers and the "here we go again" thought was palpable.

    However, the signal-caller settled down and was brilliant on the afternoon.

    He completed 16-of-25 passes for 194 yards and tied a career high by throwing three touchdown passes.

    He turned around his career numbers in Foxboro, which had been one touchdown pass to seven interceptions.

    More importantly, it was his first career win in New England.  He had lost his previous two starts at Foxboro. 

1. Defensive End/Tackle Shaun Ellis

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    INDIANAPOLIS, IN - JANUARY 08:  Shaun Ellis #92 of the New York Jets takes the field with his teammates to play against the Indianapolis Colts during their 2011 AFC wild card playoff game at Lucas Oil Stadium on January 8, 2011 in Indianapolis, Indiana. T
    Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

    Shaun Ellis was, as Walt Frazier would say, "a man possessed" on Sunday.

    The 12-year veteran pressured Brady up the middle all day.  He picked up two sacks, including a key third down sack that forced the Patriots into a field goal attempt in the first quarter.

    His play signalled that for the first time this year, the Jets could get pressure with the front four.