It's come to this for the New York Jets: Hoping that a sporting upset comparable to the 1980 Miracle on Ice can take place Sunday in Foxborough. So, they're pretty optimistic.
The New York Post's Steve Serby hits up Olympic hero - and Patriots fan - Mike Eruzione for clues as to how the underdog Jets can beat the 13-0 Patriots. The former captain of the 1980 US Hockey Team led the Americans to a stunning win over the Soviets. Today, his motivational speeches inspire teammwork and determination. Who better to lead the charge in a game in which the visitors seemingly have already lost the game days before it is to be played?
"They don't have a chance," he said.
He insists he was kidding and makes an attempt at expressing what the Jets need to believe about themselves in anticipation of Sunday, but it's gotten to the point now that if the Patriots beat the Jets Sunday -- a virtual assertion according to nearly everybody -- and the Dolphins lose to the Ravens, the spread for next week's Patriots-Dolphins game could hit 30, reports Newsday's Neil Best.
Thirty. We can't wait to hear Mercury Morris's rap on that one.
For now though, it is of course spygate, Bill Belichick, and Eric Mangini in the already blinding spotlight in preparation for Sunday's (1 p.m.!) showdown at Gillette Stadium, where it turns out the Jets might have been the purveyor of a little camera trickery of their own last season.
The New York Daily News, among other media outlets, reports today that the Patriots were miffed at the Jets last season for videotaping from the end zone stands in Foxborough. "All filming at last year's Patriots game was done with pre-approval from the Patriots and in accordance with NFL rules," Bruce Speight, the Jets' senior director of media relations, told Newsday.
The Daily News's Rich Cimini points out, "There are specific rules that restrict videotaping at games. According to one, no video recording devices are permitted in the coaches' booth, the sideline or the locker room. Based on that rule, the Jets didn't do anything illegal last year at Gillette Stadium…However, another part of the rule states that videotaping for coaching purposes must be done from locations 'enclosed from all sides with a roof overhead.'"
According to Newsday, there is some discrepancy as to whether the incident happened during New York's win in November or during the Patriots' playoff win in January. The NFL was unaware of the incident, as no formal complaint was made by New England.
That might give New England fans some extra fuel this weekend. The New York Post's Mark Cannizzaro publishes a few of the missives he's received in his Inbox from New England. Or at least the ones fit for print. The Daily News's Vic Ziegel gives the one remaining Jets fan a few other options in lieu of turning on the TV Sunday afternoon.
There may be good reason. A former Jets assistant coach tells the Daily News, "If the Jets lie down, it might be 70-0, but I'd be shocked if that happens. Obviously, the Jets aren't good enough, but they might be good enough to keep it to 35-10."
That good, huh?