A sporadic (at best) effort from the offense and a defense that looked lost much of the game sent the New York Jets to their first loss of the season, a 24-17 home loss at the Philadelphia Eagles.
But hey, punter Ryan Quigley didn't look half-bad.
Up 3-0, the Eagles got a major lift early in the second quarter when Darren Sproles returned a Ryan Quigley punt, breaking three tackles for an 89-yard touchdown return. It was the second-longest punt return in Eagles franchise history and was the longest punt return in the NFL so far this season.
Then it became 17-0 with 4:57 to go before halftime, Sam Bradford hitting Ryan Mathews on a wheel route for a 24-yard touchdown. The score ended an eight-play, 75-yard drive that took just 3:19 off the clock.
It got worse shortly thereafter, when on the Jets next possession, Ryan Fitzpatrick connected with wide receiver Brandon Marshall for 15 yards but then he inexplicably tried to flip the ball to a teammate. The result was a fumble and the Eagles took over on the Jets 36-yard line. They would punch one into the end zone for a commanding 24-0 lead.
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The Jets rolled off 14 straight points from the end of the first half through the fourth quarter to make it a 24-14 Eagles lead. Then with 7:23 left in the game, Jets linebacker David Harris stripped Ryan Matthews to give the home team some life. But Fitzpatrick was intercepted on that drive, essentially ending any hopes of a comeback.
Three Things Learned from Week 3:
Jets Were Flat
This was a game that was there for the taking, the Jets playing an Eagles team that was bad to start the year and missing their starting running back and their star linebacker. Even at the end of the first quarter, it was only a 3-0 lead for Philadelphia. The Jets were in it.
They had chances to move the ball down the field, they had several good starting positions for several of their offensive drives. Instead, the quarterback play was poor as Fitzpatrick locked-in on his wide receivers. Mistakes on special teams, poor tackling and very little pass rush killed the Jets almost from the onset. Just a poor all-around game, even as they improved in the second half in all three phases of the game.
No Decker, Lots of Problem
With wide receiver Eric Decker out with a knee injury, the Jets lost one-part of their much-improved passing offense. In his place, the Jets gave wide receiver Jeremy Kerley a much larger role as well as wide receiver Devin Smith, making his NFL debut after a ribs injury in training camp.
The result was everything being channeled through Marshall, often double-teamed and unable to find much free space for good chunks of the first half, although he did have a touchdown grab right before halftime. Kerley was solid but not special and Smith...well, he looked very raw and unready to play.
It is becoming apparent that Decker is a big part of this offense, keeping team's from doubling down on Marshall.
The Turnover Game
There was the fumble from Marshall and three interceptions thrown by Fitzpatrick in the second half and truthfully, the Eagles could have intercepted the offense a couple more times. But on the defensive side of the ball, the Jets were almost non-existent.
All that talk during the week of the Jets leading the league with 10 turnovers was not founded on Sunday. They managed to force just one turnover against Philadelphia after starting the season with five turnovers in their first two games.