Rex Ryan vs. Bill Belichick: Wes Welker & Best Moments in Jets-Patriots Rivalry

Michael DixonAnalyst IIIOctober 6, 2011

The New York Jets and New England Patriots have been playing each other since 1960. Then, they were known as the New York Titans and Boston Patriots. My, how the times have changed.

While the 2009 addition of Rex Ryan has spiced this rivalry up quite a bit, there was plenty of drama before.

But, since going back more than 50 years will take a long time, let's start in December of 1985. That gave us the first playoff matchup of the two teams. That's a pretty good launching point.

December 28, 1985

Statistically, the 1985 Patriots were one of the worst teams to ever make the Super Bowl. That playoff run started with a road game against their division rivals, the New York Jets.

This was a showdown between two of the lesser known members famous quarterback "Class of '83." Ken O'Brien was under center for the Jets, while Tony Eason was the QB for the Patriots.

Both quarterbacks were efficient. Eason was 12 of 16 for 179 yards and a touchdown, while O'Brien was 13 of 17 with one touchdown and one pick.

The New England defense was too much, as O'Brien was sacked five times, three by Garin Veris. The Patriots beat the Jets 26-14, then beat the Raiders and Dolphins before losing Super Bowl XX to the Bears.

1999-Bill Belichick's one-day reign

Before he was a future Hall of Fame Head Coach, Bill Belichick was an assistant of Bill Parcells with the Giants, Patriots, and Jets.

Before resigning as the Jets' coach, Parcells arranged for Belichick to be named as his successor. One day after taking the job, Belichick resigned.

He went on to take the Patriots' head coaching job in 2000. Three Super Bowl championships later, Belichick's job seems safe.

Eric Mangini

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - NOVEMBER 09: New York Jets coach Eric Mangini watches on against the St. Louis Rams at Giants Stadium on November 9, 2008 in East Rutherford, New Jersey.  (Photo by Nick Laham/Getty Images)
Nick Laham/Getty Images

Mangini was an assistant on all three of New England's Super Bowl winning teams. In 2006, he left New England to become the head coach of the Jets.

There was some tension between Mangini and Belichick during Mangini's run as the Jets' coach.

Mangini's run enjoyed some success, but the Jets missed the playoffs in 2008 after an 8-3 start, and Mangini was let go.

January 7, 2007

New England Patriots linebacker Tedy Bruschi  after missing an interception against the New York Jets  during  an NFL wild card playoff game Jan. 7, 2007 in Foxborough.  The Pats won 37 - 16.  (Photo by Al Messerschmidt/Getty Images)
A. Messerschmidt/Getty Images

This was the second-ever playoff meeting between the two teams. This one was no less successful for New England.

The Jets held a lead in the first half, but the Patriots scored right before halftime to take a 17-10 lead into the locker room. The second half was no contest, as Tom Brady led the Patriots to a 37-16 win.


The Patriots opened their run for perfection in 2007 on the road against the Jets. New England won the game 38-14, but the Jets accused the Patriots of videotaping the Jets' coaches on the field.

From there, allegations began to spread about how often the Patriots had done this in the past, and how clean their three Super Bowl wins were.

Rex Ryan

Ryan is the opposite of Bill Belichick. Where Belichick is closed off and keeps everything close, Ryan is out.

He's not afraid to upset people and bring all of the attention on to himself. From saying that he wasn't coming to New York to "Kiss Belichick's rings," to the constant jabs at Tom Brady, the guy is clearly not afraid to ruffle the feathers of the AFC East's big dogs.

Wes Welker

After Rex Ryan and his wife were seen in a foot fetish video, the Patriots' receiver gave a rather entertaining, dry press conference. Rex Ryan was the subject of the conference, and Welker's jokes.

If you don't believe me, see for yourself.

January 16, 2011

The Patriots fans got to enjoy two playoff wins, now it's the Jets fans' turn.

The Patriots were 14-2, and Tom Brady won the league's MVP. He threw only four interceptions on the season.

The Jets had beaten the Patriots earlier in the year, but had also lost 45-3 in New England.

New York was the better team from start to finish, eliminating the Super Bowl favorites 28-21. The game was memorable, but the end of the game will be remembered forever.

Well, Bart. I can't wait for Sunday.

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