Mike Carey will work Thursday’s Patriots-Jets game as the referee, according to our friends at FootballZebras.com .
Carey, in his 23rd season as an NFL official, is considered one of the most well-respected refs in the league. (In a 2008 poll of head coaches conducted by ESPN, he was tied for first with Ed Hochuli .) A former running back at Santa Clara University, Carey is a co-owner of Seirus Innivation, a company that manufactures ski and snowboarding gloves.
Thursday will mark his first Patriots game of the 2012 season, but he has become a relatively familiar face for New England fans over the last few seasons. According to Pro Football Reference, he worked a pair of Patriots’ regular-season games last year (at Pittsburgh and Denver). He was also the lead ref for Super Bowl  XLII between New England and New York.
For more on Carey’s background and tendencies as an official. check out his page at Pro Football Reference .