Final Score: Bills 20 – Jets 27

USATSI_7451196_110579513_lowresThe Least You Should Know…

The Jets move to 2-1 on the season and importantly posting their first divisional win.

In the first series with the offense, Geno Smith led the Jets right down the field to a touchdown on the back of a 45 yard hookup with Stephen Hill to get the drive going.  Later, Hill had another long play for a touchdown to help put the Jets up early on the Bills.

EJ Manuel and Scott Chandler finally got the Bills back into the game with about ten and a half minutes left in the fourth quarter during a tumultuous Bills drive.  Personal fouls and blown coverages from the Jets let the Bills score and then convert on a two pointer to tie the game 20-20 after Dan Carpenter had put up four field goals to keep the Bills in striking distance throughout the game.

The Jets had 20 penalties for 168 yards on the day, but it was the 69 yard catch and run from Santonio Holmes midway through the fourth quarter that helped the Jets get and keep the upper hand on the Bills.

Geno Smith had an up and down day, moving the chains and taking some successful deep strikes, but also posting two interceptions with 16/29 for 331 yards 2 TDs and 2 INTs with a 89.9 rating.

Santonio Holmes and Bilal Powell were the skill-playing stars of the day for the Jets.  While Hill was a playmaker on three catches, it was Holmes second half emergence that helped the Jets beat up on a wounded Bills secondary.  Holmes racked up 154 yards and one score on just five catches.  Powell his first 100+ yard game of his career, totaling  27 carries for 149 yards in addition to two catches for nine yards.

The defensive line was predictably dominant, tallying eight sacks (only Wilkerson had more than one) and 12 tackles for loss.  Having both Richardson and Coples available helped take focus away from Wilkerson, but the unsung hero will be Antwan Barnes, who did a good job of creating pressure for the Jets in the second half, though it won’t show up in the stats columns.

Brian Bassett,

There were a few moments in the second half that induced some slight palpitations among fans.  The unchallenged fumble by Manuel, the manic Chandler touchdown drive and the Kiko Alonso interception.  Each time though, the Jets seemed to be able to fend off the Bills one more time.

I know some fans of teams like the Seahawks are killing me for saying it, but I don’t think there is a more dominant defensive line at collapsing the line of scrimmage than the Jets this year.  In that way, it is starting to feel like Darrelle Revis’ 2009 season all over again … we’ll see how it plays out.

The Bills suffered a few important injuries in the game, losing Leodis McKelvin in the first half and then CJ Spiller in the second half.  Spiller’s was getting shut down, but one play could make a difference so his inability to go in the second half helped the Jets worry about one less weapon from the Bills.

The Jets lost Chris Ivory early in the game to a hamstring injury, but he is quickly becoming a forgotten man in the wake of how Powell played in his first game against a bottom half run defense.  More than whether or not Chris Ivory will come around, I am starting to think more about the addition of Mike Goodson to this offense than when Ivory can be healthy and show up for this team.

Each week the Jets have some glaring thing they need to clean up, and this week it has got to be the penalties.  Committing 19 penalties against the Bills is one thing, doing the same against the Steelers, Bengals or Saints is another thing altogether.

It might have been ugly, but it was a good win and one that the Jets needed badly as their schedule starts to turn more difficult in the coming weeks.  Next weekend’s opponents, the Titans, are coming around as a team and a meaty October schedule looms large for the Jets.

It was bumpy, but that the Jets pulled to 2-1 on a day where Eli Manning and the Giants had another horrible implosion against the Panthers isn’t lost on me.  The Jets are now 2-1 while the Giants are an ugly 0-3 and don’t seem to have any answers.  The Coughlin firing talk has already begun though, which might mean we watch them somehow skate to another Lombardi trophy … blech …

Either way, let’s see who’s calling whom a circus this week …

The Jets now head to Tennessee next Sunday for a matchup on September 29 at 4:05PM against the surging Titans.