New England Patriots: 3 stars from blowout victory over the Jets

New England Patriots running back James White (28) Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports
New England Patriots running back James White (28) Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports /
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New England Patriots
New England Patriots J.C. Jackson (Photo by Adam Glanzman/Getty Images) /

New England Patriots star performer No. 1: J.C. Jackson

You can make an argument that J.C. Jackson benefitted from two awful throws from Zach Wilson on his way to a two interception performance, and you’d have a bit of an argument there. But a multi-interception game cannot be overlooked, and Jackson’s two interceptions helped shut down the Jets offense and create opportunities for New England’s offense on the other end.

After a relatively quiet Week 1 performance, Jackson returned to his ball-hawking ways early on in this one, picking off Wilson’s first pass of the game. Wilson throws off his backfoot due to pressure from Ja’Whaun Bentley, and it just so happens to be to Corey Davis, who finds himself surrounded by Patriots players. Jackson tips it up in the air, and Devin McCourty wins a jump ball, tipping it back to Jackson for the interception.

It may be a bit fluky, but the initial coverage from Jackson cannot be overlooked. He stuck with Davis throughout the route, and never gave up on the play. He earned his first interception of the season as his reward.

Jackson quickly doubled his tally with a less theatrical play than this. Wilson foolishly looked Jackson’s way on third down while on the cusp of the red zone, and Jackson made him pay. Wilson was looking the way of rookie wideout Elijah Moore the entire way as he runs a corner route, and Jackson reads him the entire the way. The fact that Wilson miserably underthrows this ball only helps out.

After watching the Patriots secondary struggle to contain the Dolphins pass offense in Week 1, it was encouraging to see them step up and shut down Wilson and the Jets in this one.

More encouraging though was the play of Jackson. As the Pats continue to wait for the return of top corner Stephon Gilmore, Jackson has proven again he can hold down the fort as the top corner for the time being. Davis torched the Panthers in Week 1 for nearly 100 yards and two touchdowns, but Jackson helped limit Davis to just two catches for eight yards in this one.

Next. 5 observations from Patriots victory over the Jets. dark

Jackson will face tougher challenges than this one, but it was nice to see him take advantage of an inexperienced Jets pass defense in this one. He was a step ahead of Wilson on both his interceptions, as well as a number of other plays he wasn’t involved in. Jackson continues to be one of the best ballhawking corners in the league, and has so far proven last season’s breakout performance wasn’t a fluke.