TEXANS 23 – JETS 17
Sanchez, Jets can’t run with Foster, Texans
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. — A week after the Jets’ lifeless 35-0 performance against the San Francisco 49ers, New York showed a pulse Monday Night.
The pulse, however, was not enough to overcome the Houston Texans — or their own miscues. Mark Sanchez threw two interceptions, both coming at costly times for the Jets, who found themselves in the thick of a game that everyone had counted them out of before losing valiantly, 23-17.
The first came after a thriving drive that stalled at the 14-yard line following the intended pass for Jeremy Kerley getting tipped at the line by J.J. Watt and intercepted by Brice McCain with 14 seconds remaining in the first half and the Jets trialing 14-7. The second came just prior to the two-minute warning, with the Jets trialing 23-17, when a ball went through the hands of Jeff Cumberland and into the hands of [texans defender].
“J.J. Watt got his hands on a few passes tonight. That’s the way it goes,” a subdued Sanchez said after the game.
Trailing 23-7, McKnight took a Shayne Graham kickoff end-to-end for a 100-yard scamper and giving hope to the fan base with just over four and half minutes to play in the third quarter. The return set a record for most consecutive seasons with at least one kickoff return for touchdown with eleven.
On the ensuing kick-off, the Jets attempted and nearly recovered a sneaky onside kick — a move that Rex Ryan said was “all him”.
“That was me all the way. I came here to win. That’s it. Whatever it takes. Faking a punt in your own territory, going for it on fourth down in your own territory. I came to win,” Ryan said.
In return they got a healthy dose of the Texans All-Pro runner.
Foster found plenty of room to run gaining 152 yards and a touchdown on 29 carries. With the Jets boasting the league’s worst rushing defense, he was able to break off big gains of 46, 21, and 13 yards as the bell cow for the Houston offense. He would become the third fastest player to compile 5,000 yards from scrimmage after an eight yard gain late in the fourth quarter, behind Edgerrin James & Eric Dickerson.
Coming into the game with only 1 touchdown in their last 34 offensive possessions, the Jets had a few flashes of brilliance of their own. In what only took 1:47 to unfold, Sanchez connected on a pair of 27-yard passes; one to Clyde Gates to left and Jeff Cumberland over the middle for the score — the first of his career.
Tim Tebow, who worked out in fury with quaterbacks coach Matt Cavanaugh during pregame, attempted his first deep pass of the season to Jason Hill. It was the fifth offensive play for the Jets that drew a rousing cry from fans before falling out of the hands of the newly-acquired Hill.
Tebow would later convert a 4th & 1 to start off the second quarter on a quarterback keeper up the gut.
The Jets (2-3) now look ahead to visiting the Indianapolis Colts, who are riding high after a come-from-behind victory over the Green Bay Packers.