And at the conclusion of today's contest against the Jaguars, the Jets were victorious 13-10 in a physical battle where many punches were exchanged.
"The thing I liked about this win was nobody panicked," said Edwards. And most of the credit must be given to their man behind center.
The Jets' rode quarterback Chad Pennington's arm to a win as he threw for 236 yards and the winning score. With 26 seconds left in the fourth quarter and Gang Green down 10-6, Pennington found wide receiver Santana Moss on a fade route to give the Jets the lead. The scoring strike capped a 12-play drive consisting of 94 yards and Pennington was the catalyst by completing nine of his 12 attempts. It is games like these that give Jets fans hope for the future with Pennington emerging. "That just makes him who he is," Edwards said.
Pennington has started four games this season and has had to engineer a fourth quarter rally in each of them. His ability to come back in tight situations is not going unnoticed as his late scoring drives are causing him to be compared to the great Joe Montana. "It's fun but you don't want to make a living doing that," he said. Maybe so, but it is encouraging for his teammates and coaching staff knowing that they can win in dramatic fashion.
Part of the reason why Pennington came up big was out of necessity. Curtis Martin was limited to 56 yards on 20 carries as the Jaguars' defense swarmed to the football and shut down his running lanes. But Pennington's play was the difference along with Gang Green's effort on the defensive side of the ball. Despite Jacksonville running back Fred Taylor running for 119 yards on 32 carries and backup LaBrandon Toefield adding 37 yards on just three carries, the Jaguars were unable to provide a balanced attack as rookie signal-caller Byron Leftwich completed only 17 of 33 passes for 172 yards and no touchdowns. Leftwich also threw a costly interception in the first quarter that killed a potential scoring drive with Aaron Beasley committing the theft in the end zone as he leaped for the pass that would have given Jacksonville a 7-3 lead. The impressive performance by the defense was a major difference from last week's embarrassing display against the Indianapolis Colts.
"It was just a defensive game," Edwards said. "I think our guys were embarrassed with what happened last week. They came back."
Santana Moss was limited to two receptions for just 13 yards as his string of 100-yard receiving games came to an end. But when it mattered most, Moss came up with the game-winner as his arrival as a playmaker is making noise throughout the league.
With the win, the Jets are not alone in last place for the first time this season as they are now sharing the bottom of the AFC East with the Buffalo Bills falling to 4-7 off a 17-14 defeat to the Colts. They play the Tennessee Titans next week at home on Monday night. The Titans are considered to be among the elite teams of the NFL and Gang Green would probably like to play spoilers to Jeff Fisher's squad. But for now, the Jets have another W in the standings and look like they are on their way to finishing the season on a high note.
Gang Green keeps fighting
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