Did Jets blow whistle on Patriots?

October, 21, 2013
10/21/13
12:45
PM ET
The New England Patriots got away with the "Push" play in last week's win over the New Orleans Saints, raising the question: Were the New York Jets aware of that and did they alert the officiating crew before Sunday's game?

If they did, it wouldn't have been the first time the Jets blew the whistle on the Patriots. Anybody remember SpyGate in 2007? Obviously, that was on a much greater scale, but you get the point.

In their dramatic win over the Saints, the same two players -- Chris Jones and Will Svitek -- orchestrated the same technique as they did against the Jets. Attempting to block Garrett Hartley's 39-yard field with 2:24 left in the game, Jones shoved Svitek into the offensive formation, violating a new NFL rule designed to improve player safety. No penalty was called.

Could it be that Rex Ryan's twin brother, Saints defensive coordinator Rob Ryan, tipped him off?

With Nick Folk attemping a potential game winner from 56 yards in overtime, Jones and Svitek pulled their tag-team act, but this time Jones was flagged. It was unsportsmanlike conduct, 15 yards. Afterward, New England coach Bill Belichick claimed it's only a foul if the push comes from a second-level defender. The rule clearly states that any push is illegal.

On Monday, Belichick admitted to reporters he was wrong.

The Jets may have tried the same stunt, except they got away with it. On Stephen Gostkowski's field goal at the end of regulation, Quinton Coples appeared to shove a teammate into the Patriots' line. It's hard to tell from the TV replay if it was a significant push.

Rich Cimini

ESPN New York Jets reporter

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