The New England Patriots have won the AFC East in eight of the 10 seasons since Tom Brady took over as the starting quarterback during the Patriots’ Week 2 matchup with the New York Jets in 2001.
During that span, the Jets have been able to win the AFC East just once over 10 seasons when they won in 2002. The Jets had the same record as the Patriots and Miami Dolphins that season, but a better record in common games earned the Gang Green the tiebreaker.
Since that time, Brady and Patriots head coach Bill Belichick have been able to attain the all-time record for wins by a quarterback-coaching duo, currently sitting at 117—which they set in their crushing 37-16 victory of the Jets at MetLife Stadium in Week 10.
Of those 117 victories, 15 have come against the New York Jets—Brady and Belichick are 15-4 against the Jets in the regular season. From their meeting in Week 3 of 2003 until Week 10 of 2006, the Jets lost seven straight games against Brady and the Patriots.
Tom Brady’s domination of the Jets alone has kept an AFC East title from their hands, and thus a difficult playoff run for Gang Green in five of their six playoff appearances since 2001.
Three head coaches, six starting quarterbacks and 11 NFL seasons later, the Jets still cannot beat Tom Brady.
No matter what the Jets throw at the Patriots, Brady foils New York’s evil plot with a smug grin on his face. His playboy looks, superstar skills and especially his Super Bowl rings are everything Jets fan covet—and despise. Every year, Brady delivers the Jets with another disappointing blow.
It is as if the hit Mo Lewis layed on former Patriots quarterback Drew Bledsoe that led to the eventual ascension of Tom Brady was a curse upon the Jets and their house.
Drew Bledsoe’s internal bleeding lasted one night. The Jets’ internal bleeding has lasted over a decade.
And yet this season appeared to be something different. Jets fans and the Jets’ players themselves were optimistic that a win over the Patriots would put them in the driver’s seat for their first AFC East title since 2002, and provide the perfect path to destiny at Super Bowl XLVI in Indianapolis.
That was until Tom Brady swooped in and swiped that title from the Jets’ very hands, wrapping it around his waist once again as the Patriots pummeled the Jets into the ground at MetLife Stadium.
This was not the first time the Jets have been left beaten by Tom Brady and it is the unfortunate reality that this is not the last time the Jets will falter at the hands of Brady, either. With a few years still left in the tank, it will be a long time before Tom Brady allows the Jets to taste the AFC East title again.