The New England Patriots routed the rival New York Jets 45-3 to take sole possession of first place in the division and tie for the National Football League’s best record.
Tom Brady threw four touchdown passes in winning his 26th straight game at Gillette Stadium in Foxboro, Massachusetts, breaking Brett Favre’s record for most consecutive home wins by a quarterback.
The Patriots improved to 10-2 on the season, tying the Atlanta Falcons for the NFL’s best record, and moved a game ahead of the Jets (9-3) in the American Football Conference’s East Division. There are four games left in the regular season and the AFC East winner will likely get a first-round bye in the playoffs and at least one home game in the postseason.
“We just executed pretty well tonight,” Brady, who passed for 326 yards, said in a televised interview. “That’s a good team that we played, it wasn’t their best night. It was an important game, but we’ve got another big game next week.”
The Patriots intercepted New York quarterback Mark Sanchez three times in avenging a 28-14 road loss to the Jets during Week 2 on Sept. 19. New England is 9-1 since then.
The game marked the fourth time in 40 years that teams with 9-2 records or better met on “Monday Night Football.”
The Jets lost for the first time in six road games this season. They had won eight straight regular-season road games dating back to a Nov. 22, 2009, loss at New England, when Sanchez threw four interceptions as a rookie.
It was the Jets’ worst defeat since 1986, when they lost by the same score to Miami after a 10-1 start and finished the regular season with a five-game losing streak.