It was New England's defense that came up big for the second week in a row, as the Pats beat division rival New York 19-10 in East Rutherford, N.J. Sunday.
All week, the talk centered on Tom Brady'sunderstudy, Matt Cassel, and that proved to ignite a fire in the hearts of the Patriots defenders, like defensive lineman Richard Seymour.
"We definitely had something to rally around," said Seymour, who had a sack of Jets QB Brett Favrein the win. "Defensively, we just wanted to come out and execute and show that we're pretty good on this side of the ball, too."
As is the Patriots way, Cassel didn't dwell on what went right, instead focusing on what he needs to do to get better.
"I definitely look at it like that," Cassel said after the game. "I'm still maturing as a quarterback. As I continue to grow and get more starts, hopefully I'll make a few less mistakes here, see a few more defenses there, recognize this and that. It's definitely a stepping stone for me. There's no doubt about that."
"I talked to Tom a lot [this week]," Cassel continued in an* L.A. Times *story. "We had many different conversations on many different aspects of the game. His big advice was to go out there, manage the game, be smart with the football, and that we have enough good players on this team to win if I do that."
"They had a package for him," Jets cornerback Darrelle Revisnoted. "And the package was to be smart and make good throws.
"There were things we didn't take advantage of, and we have to do that if we're going to beat a team like the Patriots."
Meanwhile, crestfallen Jets fans are letting their disappointment show through in a *New York Daily News *piece.
"It's the same old Jets," moaned Eric Donald, 40, of Brooklyn, whose face was painted Jets green. "We get our hopes up, and then they dash them. The Jets will always let us down ... I just can't stand it."
*USA TODAY *looks at some of the erroneous predictions about the Pats made by TV analysts Sunday morning.
WR Randy Mosshad fun pointing that out during his post-game interview as well.
"I don't think there is one person in my face with this microphone that picked us to win," said Moss. "I'm going to end [my interview this way]: The New England Patriots [are] 2-0. We got one in the division, so all you haters keep hating. We're coming."
A Seattle media outlets took a humorous look at Matt Cassel's unusual week in a faux diary.