The New York Jets were on top of the NFL world after a shocking win over the Atlanta Falcons last Monday night. It was like the Jets were acting as if the franchise just clinched a playoff spot, or won the Super Bowl shooting down the team’s critics down hard, when it reality all it was was a win in game 5 of 16.
A win against the Steelers would have shown the Jets are for real, but instead the team had a classic letdown allowing the Steelers to walk out of MetLife Stadium a winner 19-6.
The first half was pretty uneventful, with the Steelers taking a 9-3 lead with 48 seconds remaining. That’s when Geno Smith executed a 7-play 51 yard drive that ended in a field goal just before time expired making the score 9-6 Pittsburgh entering the break.
The Jets would get the ball to start the second half with a chance to build on their momentum. A 3 and out quickly gave the ball back to Pittsburgh and the Jets never recovered.
On the 3rd play of the Steelers’ first drive of the 2nd half, Ben Roethlisberger found a wide open Emmanuel Sanders for a 55-yard score to give the Steelers a 16-6 lead. Sanders beat Antonio Cromartie who struggled all day. Cromartie was hurt in Thursday’s practice, and he was clearly not himself in this one.
The Jets responded putting together a nice drive, until Geno was picked by Ryan Clark at the Steelers 2-yard line on a pass thrown into triple coverage as he was attempting to hit Konrad Reuland of all people.
With just under 5 minutes left in the 4th quarter, and Pittsburgh leading 19-6, the Jets were once again driving with a chance to make it a one score game. With the ball on the Steelers 12-yard line, Geno was hit as he was throwing by Jarvis Jones, and Lawrence Timmons hauled in an easy pick sealing the Jets fate.
Pittsburgh entered this game as the only team without a turnover. They had 2 in this one.
Execution was a big problem all game for New York. The Jets went just 3/11 on 3rd downs, while Pittsburgh went 6/16.
On Pittsburgh’s first offensive drive, Mohammad Wilkerson had Roethlisberger wrapped up in the end-zone for a safely, but Big Ben somehow got out of it like only he could.
In the 2nd quarter, on a play that would have changed the game, Geno Smith overthrew a wide open Stephen Hill. The play would have resulted in a 77-yard touchdown to give the Jets the lead. It was the best opportunity of the game for the Jets.
With the loss, the Jets fall to 3-3 with a major game against the Patriots next week. The Steelers are finally in the win column and welcome the Ravens to Heinz Field next Sunday.
**Clyde Gates, Bilal Powell, and Mike Goodson all left today’s game with injuries, although Powell said following the game he isn’t hurt.