Rex Ryan saw the penalty flag fly almost as soon as Nick Folk's 56-yard kick glided wide left.
Then, the New York Jets coach started mumbling to himself.
"I was saying, 'Oh, please be on them, please be on them, please be on them,'" Ryan said, smiling. "I think my reaction was just like our fans because I think I heard the whole stadium saying, 'Please be on them, please be on them.'
"That was everybody's reaction."
After a newly instituted rule gave New England a penalty and Folk another chance, he booted a 42-yard field goal with 5:07 left in overtime to give the Jets a 30-27 victory over the Patriots on Sunday.
"I was like, 'You know what? It's about time we got a break,'" Ryan said, smiling. "That's really what I was thinking. It just worked out."
Referee Jerome Boger explained in a pool report that New England's Chris Jones was called for a 15-yard unsportsmanlike conduct penalty for pushing his teammate "into the opponents' formation." It had never before been called in an NFL game.
Patriots coach Bill Belichick disagreed with the application of the rule.
"You can't push in the second level," Belichick said. "I didn't think we did that."
New York (4-3), given new life, ran the ball three times to set up Folk's winner and send the green towel-waving fans at MetLife Stadium into a frenzy.
"I wanted the long one to go in," Folk said. "I wish the game would've ended on the long one. That would have been fun, but luckily we got closer and I got to put it through and beat the Patriots."
It was a controversial ending to a highly entertaining game as New York ended a six-game regular-season losing streak to New England (5-2). The Patriots' 12-game winning streak against AFC East opponents was also stopped.
"Everyone has to look at themselves and do a better job," Tom Brady said, "because what we're doing right now isn't good enough."
Here are five things to know from the Jets' stunning victory over the Patriots:
RULE BOOK: NFL players were primed on rules changes during training camp, with officials showing videos of calls that would be made — including the penalty that decided this game.
The rule, a change for this season, states a defensive team on a kick can't push teammates on the line of scrimmage into the offensive formation.
"It was something that we talked about probably in camp and stuff, and it just skipped out of my mind," Jones said. "It was my mistake and nobody else's. I've just got to man up to it and fix it next time."
COMEBACK FALLS SHORT: A week after pulling out a thrilling victory against New Orleans, Brady couldn't do it again against New York.
He came close, though.
Brady led the Patriots on the tying drive as Stephen Gostkowski kicked a 44-yard field goal with 16 seconds left in regulation. New England got the ball first in overtime, but were forced to punt.
Brady finished 22 of 46 for 228 yards and had an interception returned 23 yards for a touchdown by Antonio Allen in the momentum-turning play of the game. The Patriots were also unable to convert on third down, going a 1 for 12 in those situations.
"We just haven't been good on third down all year," Brady said. "Obviously, that's a big problem."
GENO PREVAILS: Geno Smith threw a touchdown pass to Jeremy Kerley and ran for another, rebounding from early trouble after having an interception returned 79 yards by Logan Ryan for a touchdown in the first quarter.
It appeared to be an ominous sign, but Smith was solid the rest of the way.
He was 17 of 33 for 233 yards, and gave the Jets a 24-21 lead in the third quarter on an 8-yard run that left the crowd chanting "GEE-NO! GEE-NO!"
"I'm never going to crumble," Smith said. "No matter what happens. You know, that's just not in me."
GRONK RETURNS: Star tight end Rob Gronkowski made his season debut for the Patriots after having offseason surgery on his back and broken left forearm.
He didn't appear to miss a beat, leading New England with eight catches for 114 yards. He almost made a one-handed grab late in regulation when he had a clear lane into the end zone, but couldn't hold on to it.
"I'm still mad about that one," Gronkowski said.
TEAM EFFORT: Several players had big contributions for the Jets.
In eight drives in the second half and overtime, the defense held the Patriots to two field goals, five punts and Allen's interception return.
Kerley had eight catches, with six of them for first downs on third-down plays. Chris Ivory, who last week said he'd like to see the Jets run more, set a career high with 34 carries for 104 yards.
Folk made his third winning kick of the season, and is 16 for 16 on field-goal attempts.
AP NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org