Patriots get some good news during Monday Night Football

The Bills and Jets didn't look all that impressive on Monday night, to say the least.
Philadelphia Eagles v New England Patriots
Philadelphia Eagles v New England Patriots / Kevin Sabitus/GettyImages

The opening game of Monday Night Football was one that the New England Patriots were likely paying very close attention to. Because the New York Jets welcomed the Buffalo Bills to MetLife Stadium, and both teams are considered the frontrunners of the AFC East, the game provided insight into how the teams look early on in the season.

Although the Bills haven't been discussed as much the way the Jets have, they have been the winners of the division since Tom Brady's departure and seem to have the Patriots' number every time they match up. They are still favorites to continue their streak as the AFCE Champions, but they didn't appear as dominant on Monday night as most expected.

The same thing could be said about the Jets.

From an offseason spent hyping up the historically mediocre team because of the Aaron Rodgers trade, that all went down the tubes on the first offensive drive. Rodgers was injured while attempting his first pass of the game and is said to have (more than likely) torn his Achilles, which will keep him sidelined for the rest of the 2023 season.

It was a significant blow to the Jets' high hopes for the season, and his absence from the field didn't seem to help the Bills' chances of winning the game, either.

But it was collectively all good news for the Patriots and the division in general.

It proved that the AFC East is more open than what has been said all offseason. The Jets are in quarterback trouble, having to rely on Zach Wilson now the rest of the way unless they try to bring in some reinforcements. And Josh Allen was an absolute mess on Monday night, throwing three interceptions (to Jordan Whitehead) and losing a fumble late in the fourth quarter.

Considering the impressive showing that the Patriots displayed against the Eagles on Sunday evening, in a game that started in the worst possible way, it makes all those who concluded New England was the apparent loser in the division look silly.


Yes, it's only week one, and plenty will change between now and the end of the season. But this weekend's games were the ultimate case of anything can happen on any given Sunday in the NFL. Plenty of teams look great on paper, and making Super Bowl predictions is fun. Still, it doesn't consider how a team will perform against real opponents or the inevitable injuries that happen every season.

If the Patriots can build upon their success against one of the toughest teams in the league, they will be competing for a spot in the playoffs in December.

Of course, things will improve for all four teams in the division as the weeks go on, especially for the Bills and Jets. But it's a good sign to see they are not immortal like the way the media spoke about them over the last several months, and they look like teams the Patriots can hang with when they finally match up this season.