If this was a sign of the things to come, then sky is the limit for this Jets team, as they finally played a complete game on offense, defense and special teams. Going into the game against the Bills as 2.5-point underdogs, the Gang Green left their opponents absolutely no chances, totally dominating the contest from start to finish. The Bills, who had one of the best offensive units in the league, were limited to under 300 total yards and under 100 yards on the ground.
The Gang Green's defensive dominance was especially evident in the first half when they limited Buffalo to just three first downs, making them punt on 3 of their 6 possessions, and taking the ball away on the other 3 (2 interceptions and 1 turnover on downs). If it wasn't for the mistakes on offense, the outcome of this game surely should have been decided after the first two quarters. However, QB Mark Sanchez' interception on the first possession and then a stupid holding penalty that nullified RB Shonn Greene's 40+ yard run made the team work for this win a bit more than they should have.
Despite playing without DE Mike DeVito and rookie NT Kenrick Ellis, the Gang Green totally overmatched their opponent physically, as they dominated on both sides at the line of scrimmage. Although the running attack wasn't as good as in the previous meetings (Rex Ryan's Jets had averaged 279 rushing yards and never fewer than 249 in four previous games against Buffalo), it was still enough to "sell" play action and make Sanchez' job easier. The defense, meanwhile, became the first to hold Buffalo under 20 points this season. Buffalo's QB Ryan Fitzpatrick, who had completed more than 70 percent of his passes each of the past three weeks, connected on just 48.4 percent against the Jets.
Sanchez had a pretty good game overall, completing 20 of 28 passes for 230 yards, 1 TD, 1 INT. Greene started impressively but then slowed down in the second half, finishing with 76 yards on 19 carries. Although he did get injured late in the game and was replaced by RB Joe McKnight. WR Plaxico Burress led the team with 5 receptions for 79 yards, his best as a Jet. TE Dustin Keller caught 4 passes for 64 yards, but will be remembered for yet another boneheaded leap over defenders that could have resulted in a serious injury.
The Jets (5-3) are now in a 3-way tie in the AFC East, but will have a great chance to move into the first place when they host the New England Patriots (5-3) next Sunday. That's another must win, a third must win game in a row for Rex Ryan's team. The Jets are favored by one point in the early lines and will have to play at least as well as they did against the Bills. "If we want to win our division, you’ve got to beat New England,” Rex Ryan said. “It’s much easier said than done but we’re just the guys for the job. And we hope to prove it next week."
Offensive line - they did a great job in both run blocking and pass protection.
CB Antonio Cromartie - played well in coverage (defended 2 passes) and also forced a fumble.
DT Sione Pouha - 7 tackles (4 solo) and a forced fumble.
WR Plaxico Burress - Sanchez targeted him 5 times and he caught all 5 passes.
WR Santonio Holmes - didn't produce impressive stats (3 receptions for 29 yards, 1 TD) but drew a couple of long pass interference calls.
CB Darrelle Revis - he was burned on a 52-yard pass, then drew a penalty. This could be an average game for an ordinary cornerback but this is Revis...
TE Dustin Keller - just please be smarter next time. 3-4 extra yards in the middle of the field are not worth a possible serious injury.