Bad angles, overruns, no drops mark the Jets’ winning drive

Bad angles, overruns, no drops mark the Jets’ winning drive

Three big runs propelled the New York Jets on a time-consuming drive to a game-winning field goal in an upset of the Buffalo Bills on Sunday.

These plays lead the plays that shaped New York’s 20-17 victory at MetLife Stadium:


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Jay Skurski weighs in with his grades for the Buffalo Bills following their 20-17 loss to the New York Jets at MetLife Stadium.

Run persistently. James Robinson ripped off a 16-yard run to the Jets’ 36 with 6:40 left. Safety Jaquan Johnson came on a run from left tackle and was essentially out of the game. Linebacker Tremaine Edmunds floated over to the left too far as Robinson cut the ball back up the middle. Defensive tackle Jordan Phillips tried a swim move to the left and came too far out of his gap to center Connor McGovern, who pushed him out of the way to create a bigger cutback lane.

Bad angle. On the next play, Michael Carter ran wide around left end for 17 yards to the Buffalo 47. Johnson was sacked on this one. Shaq Lawson set the edge reasonably well against tackle Duane Brown to force Carter to go outside.

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Johnson was blocked and ran free to the ball carrier. But Carter, a fourth-round pick last year with 4.50 speed, was too quick for the sideline. If Johnson tried to collect the runner 2 yards down the field, he might have made the tackle. Instead, the speedy Carter ran through an arm tackle attempt and up the sideline.

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The Buffalo Bills’ run defense was run over Sunday by the New York Jets, who piled up 174 yards on the ground en route to a 20-17 victory at MetLife Stadium.

Blocked up. With 4:18 left, Carter rumbled for a 15-yard gain over left guard to the Buffalo 23. It was a case where no Bills defender could get off a block.

Lawson took it upon himself to pull guard Nate Herbig, but was unable to push the pitch and was knocked to the turf. Linebacker Terrel Bernard and Johnson were in prime positions to make plays. But Bernard was completely engulfed by tight end Tyler Conklin and pushed to the right. Johnson was completely blocked by receiver Denzel Mims. Maybe Jordan Poyer would have recognized the play and gotten up on or around Mims quicker. Edmunds was on the backside and met a clean block at the second level from guard Laken Tomlinson.

Then cornerback Dane Jackson missed a tackle at the 30, which added 7 yards.

Too easy. The Jets’ touchdown run late in the second quarter came when they caught the Bills in a bad defensive call to defend a run up the middle.

Edmunds tackled straight. Bernard lined up outside left tackle. That left only safety Damar Hamlin in the middle of the field. Carter went in for a 6-yard score.

It had to be a broken defensive call. Perhaps one of the defensive ends was meant to crash the middle to the running back regardless of who carried the ball.

Outnumbered. The Jets used a jet sweep motion with receiver Braxton Berrios to outscore the Bills on the 7-yard screen pass TD to Robinson that gave them a 17-14 lead in the third quarter.

Berrios went in motion wide left. Both Edmunds and Bernard flew to that side of the field, where cornerback Christian Bernard and Johnson were defending. Four Bills defenders were on three Jets receivers. The pass went to Robinson on a screen to the right, with both the guards going in front and receiver Garrett Wilson blocking.

Wilson shielded Jackson, which left only Taron Johnson and Hamlin on that side. The two guards shielded the defensive backs for an easy score.

Buffalo Bills wide receiver Stefon Diggs talks to the media about quarterback Josh Allen after the Bills’ 20-17 loss to the New York Jets.

Harry Scull Jr.


Great conversation. The Bills picked off a perfectly timed quarterback sweep against the perfect defense for their second touchdown.

It was a third-and-2 situation at the Jets’ 36, and the Bills lined up with three wide receivers wide to the right. Devin Singletary went into motion just before snapping wide right, and Jets linebacker CJ Mosley ran to follow him.

The Jets were in man-to-man coverage. Guard Rodger Saffold pulled and took out the left cornerback, Sauce Gardner. That left deep safety Jordan Whitehead as the only defender between Josh Allen and the end zone. Allen turned on the speed and beat Whitehead to the end zone pylon.

It was Allen’s longest run in three years, since a 36-yarder in a road win at Miami in 2019.


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The bottom line is that the Bills’ best player gave the Jets 10 points with two interceptions. The first took a safe three points off the board. The second gave the Jets the ball at Buffalo on the 19th.

Strip sack. After 13 plays on a drive to start the third quarter, the Bills finally took advantage of a third-and-long situation when Von Miller hit right tackle Cedric Ogbuehi for a sack and a fumble. AJ Epenesa recovered the ball at the Bills’ 29.

Missed opportunity. The Bills had a screen pass to Singletary pretty well set up late in the third quarter. But Jets linebacker CJ Mosley quickly closed and eluded Saffold to tackle for just a 2-yard gain.

Ryan Bates was out front and blocked linebacker Quincy Williams 7 yards down. Saffold didn’t close Mosley down quickly enough, even though quick moves in space aren’t Saffold’s strength. It’s possible Saffold thought Singletary was going to cut outside, instead of inside, but linebacker Kwon Alexander was waiting outside. If Singletary avoided Mosley, that would be a big gain. The Bills got the first down, but the drive stalled when Allen overthrew Nyhiem Hines down the sideline on a third-and-9 play. The Bills settled for a field goal.

Buffalo Bills quarterback Josh Allen talks to the media about his performance in the Bills’ 20-17 loss to the New York Jets at MetLife Stadium on Sunday, Nov. 6, 2022.

Harry Scull Jr.


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