Jets, Geno Smith get better of fellow rookie QB E.J. Manuel

 

In the first meeting between Jets quarterback Geno Smith and Bills quarterback E.J. Manuel, it was Smith who came out on top in a 27-20 win over the Bills.

The Jets improved to 2-1.

After losing to the Patriots last week, the Jets desperately needed this win to stave off an 0-2 start in the division. What they got was a relatively solid showing from Smith, who struggled in Week 2 with three interceptions in the fourth quarter.

But Smith played relatively smart football and was helped by a receiving corps that limited drops. The young quarterback had both a rushing and passing touchdown but his interceptions will continue to cast doubt on his ability to read defenses.

The signature moment of the game came midway through the fourth quarter when Smith found wide receiver Santonio Holmes on a go-route for a 69-yard touchdown pass and a 27-20 Jets lead.

It was also a “bend don’t break” outing from the Jets defense, including a second-quarter sack by Quinton Coples. The Jets had six sacks on the afternoon, an impressive number considering Manuel was sacked just once entering the game.

The Bills generated only 319 yards of total offense as the Jets’ pass rush kept Manuel constantly guessing.

Three things we learned …

1. Manuel vs. Smith

It was billed all week long as a battle of the Top-2 quarterbacks taken in this past NFL Draft. Manuel, a surprise selection as the No. 16 pick, had impressed during the season’s first two games with a significantly higher completion percentage, more passing yards and a much higher passer rating than Smith. On the Jets’ first drive, Smith made three third-down conversion attempts and it was his 8-yard designed quarterback draw that gave the Jets a 7-0 lead. Clinging to a 7-6 lead midway through the second quarter, Smith perfectly placed a ball to Stephen Hill for a 51-yard touchdown pass in the face of stiff pressure from the Bills. All told, Smith had pass plays of 45 yards, 51 yards, 40 yards and then 69 yards as he showed off his big arm for the first time.

2. Ground and pound it

With Smith’s struggles last week, the ground game had to get going for the Jets to have any semblance of an offense. The running back tandem of Bilal Powell and Chris Ivory got rolling against the Patriots, but it was a slow start for the Jets Sunday. They had just 27 rushing yards on 11 carries in the first quarter and lost Ivory to a left hamstring injury in the second quarter. Eventually, the Jets got the ground game rolling behind some steady gains from Powell, including a powerful 27-yard run early in the third quarter. Powell finished the game with 24 carries for a career-high 149 yards.

3. Penalties kill the Jets

Cornerback Kyle Wilson gave the Bills a lifeline in the fourth quarter as he committed four straight penalties to extend a Buffalo drive that looked likely to peter out. Instead, the Wilson penalties set up Manuel for a 33-yard touchdown pass to tight end Scott Chandler over the middle. A successful two-point conversion attempt leveled the game at 20-20. The Jets would regain the lead, but Wilson showed that he was a liability on the field. It was a sloppy day overall for the Jets, with Vlad Ducasse, Muhammad Wilkerson and Santonio Holmes all flagged for multiple penalties along with Wilson. The Jets had an absurdly high 19 penalties for 163 yards.

Follow Jets beat writer Kristian Dyer on Twitter @KristianRDyer.



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

Federal mediator joins Met Opera labor talks as…

Unions representing the orchestra and chorus of the Met Opera agreed to have a federal mediator join labor talks on Thursday as a threatened lockout loomed.

Local

Winning $7 million New York lottery ticket sold…

The only $7 million winning New York Lottery ticket for Monday's Cash4Life drawing was sold at a Queens 7-Eleven, officials said on Tuesday.

Local

Brooklyn man charged in roommate's stabbing death

A Brooklyn man accused of violently stabbing his roommate to death on Monday is in police custody and faces murder charges.

International

Dinosaurs could have survived asteroid strike

It turns out there is a good and a bad time for the planet to be hit by a meteor, and dinosaurs were just unlucky.…

Movies

Review: 'Guardians of the Galaxy' is a refreshingly…

Marvel is sitting so high on a cash mountain that it's now thrown $170 million at the relatively obscure and very silly title "Guardians of the Galaxy."

Movies

Review: 'Get on Up' is a war between…

James Brown finally gets his own boring biopic with "Get on Up," but the Godfather of Soul puts up a good fight against the usual cliches.

Movies

Review: 'Child of God' finds director James Franco…

James Franco's 11th directed feature is a noble but sloppy adaptation of Cormac McCarthy's "Child of God," about a feral mountain man (Scott Haze).

Movies

Review: Alex Gibney's Fela Kuti doc 'Finding Fela'…

Prolific documentarian Alex Gibney takes on Afrobeat god Fela Kuti in "Finding Fela," but fails to capture his unique essence.

MLB

Yankees land Stephen Drew, Martin Prado at trade…

Yankees land Stephen Drew, Martin Prado at trade deadline

College

Playing the Field: Valentine's Day coupling edition

  It’s Valentine’s Day, a day created by Hallmark to make couples spend loads and loads of money on candy, flowers and gourmet dinners. Or…

MLB

Angelo Cataldi: Ryan Howard deserves better from Phillies

Just last week, Ryan Howard endured the embarrassment of a benching that was inevitable, and yet still shocking.

NFL

Larry Donnell has inside track in Giants tight…

Little-known Larry Donnell of Grambling State currently has the inside track, as the second-year player has received the bulk of the first-team reps.

Career

What do you wear to a career fair?…

Getting that gig starts with presenting the most polished and memorable version of yourself, so refer to our expert fashion advice.

Style

Editors pick: Margiela's finger armor ring

These cool rings from Maison Martin Margiela are designed to overlap over the finger, covering each joint like armor.

Style

Givenchy champions diversity

Riccardo Tisci's uses a variety of ethnically diverse ladies for his spring campaign including Erykah Badu.

Wellbeing

Don't settle for the hotel fitness center with…

Travelers who want to skip the hotel fitness center in favor of local gyms that may offer better equipment, classes and amenities can turn to…