After three weeks filled with tense games and off-field controversies, a 60-minute demolition of an inferior opponent was prescribed. Consider the script filled.
In every facet of the game, the Jets dominated the Bills, 38-14, Sunday afternoon at Ralph Wilson Stadium. The Jets improved to 3-1 at the 2010 NFL season quarter pole and will host Brett Favre and the Vikings next Monday night. The Bills fell to 0-4 and appear to be in a life-and-death struggle with Carolina for the No. 1 overall pick in next April's draft.
The thorough outclassing began on the game's opening drive. Brian Schottenheimer's charges mixed runs and passes for 63 yards, ending with a Tomlinson one-yard touchdown leap.
Following a missed 30-yard field goal attempt by Nick Folk and punts on successive series, there may have been a sinking feeling, especially in a stadium that has historically been unwelcoming for the Jets.
The game ended for all intents and purposes in the third quarter. The Jets scored three touchdowns in three straight possessions to push the advantage to 31-7. The explosion began when Brad Smith connected with Dustin Keller for a three-yard touchdown. Three plays after recovering a Marshawn Lynch fumble at the Bills' 23-yard line, Sanchez hit Keller with a two-yard touchdown catch on a play where the tight end was impossibly open. Six plays later, Tomlinson sprinted down the left side, past Buffalo defenders for 26 yards and the last Jets' touchdown of the quarter—and the game.
Rex Ryan spoke during the week of his desire to see the offense revert back to its Ground and Pound roots. That happened as the Jets pounded the Bills for 273 yards on 19 carries. Tomlinson spearheaded the assault with 133 yards. Shonn Green rushed for 117 yards. In his role as Wildcat quarterback, Brad Smith carried the ball three times for 11 yards. Even rookie running back Joe McKnight got in the action, running four times for 12 yards in the fourth quarter.
Tomlinson also contributed to the passing game by catching three passes for 22 yards. Edwards led the team with 86 yards. He and Keller (28 yards) shared the team lead with four catches apiece. Jerricho Cotchery added three catches for 26 yards. Rookie full back John Conner recorded his first NFL reception in the second quarter, a two-yard reception.
Sanchez again played mistake-free football. The second-year quarterback completed 14-of-24 passes for 161 yards and two touchdowns. Sanchez is 60-for-103 for 711 yards with eight touchdowns in the first four games and has not thrown an interception.
Smith's third-quarter touchdown pass to Keller was his lone attempt. Second-string quarterback Mark Brunell hit on his only pass attempt of the game, a seven yard hook up with reserve tight end Ben Hartsock in the fourth quarter.
Defensively, the Jets forced the Bills to punt nine times. That was when they weren't pressuring Ryan Fitzpatrick. Fitzpatrick spent most of the early afternoon running for his life. He was sacked three times for a loss of 19 yards. Fitzpatrick did complete 12 passes for 128 yards and two touchdowns.
Folk made a 19-yard field goal in the second quarter.
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