A 41-yard game-winning field goal from Chandler Catanzaro with 28 seconds left in overtime lifted the New York Jets (2-2) to a 23-20 victory over the Jacksonville Jaguars on Sunday afternoon.
The Jets blew a 10-point fourth-quarter lead to set up the dramatics, a six-possession overtime period that yielded nothing from the opposing offenses.
It came down to a battle of field position and a 70-yard punt by Lac Edwards pinned the Jaguars deep near their end zone. A quick three-and-out led to a Brad Nortman 45-yard punt that put the Jets near midfield. But a 15-yard unsportsmanlike conduct penalty on linebacker Paul Posluszny gave New York the ball on Jacksonville’s 40-yard-line, leading to Catanzaro’s winner.
New York was fueled by its ground game on Sunday as Bilal Powell rushed for a career-high 163 yards and was supported by an additional 93 from rookie Elijah McGuire.
After an opening drive in which the Jets were completely shut down by the Jaguars pass defense, they fell behind when Bortles directed a 10-play, 61-yard scoring drive which ended in the quarterback hitting Fournette with a 10-yard screen pass.
The rookie Fournette became the first Jaguars player in franchise history to score a scrimmage touchdown in each of his first four games.
But the Jets made a quick adjustment and the logical choice of moving to the run game. And boy, did it work.
On the very first play of their ensuing drive, Bilal Powell took a toss play 75 yards for a touchdown in which he hurdled a falling Telvin Smith, got back on his feet and streaked past Jacksonville defenders who had slowed down thinking the play was over. The Jets back had 72 yards on the ground through New York’s first three games of the season.
The play was reviewed, though replays provided an inconclusive look at whether Campbell’s helmet made contact with Powell’s shin. Regardless, Powell’s score set a new Jets franchise record for the longest touchdown run.
While Powell eclipsed the 100-yard mark in the first half, the offense couldn’t generate much else as both teams could only trade a pair of field goals to finish off the first half.
The Jets had a chance to take the lead in the final seconds after converting a 4th-and-21 to get into field goal range, but Chandler Catanzaro missed a 45-yard field goal attempt.
But the rookie McGuire and the Jets ground game put them ahead on their first possession of the second half with another big play as the No. 2 back went 69 yards right up the middle to give the Jets a 17-10 lead. It was the longest rush of the youngster’s developing career and the first time since 2002 that the Jets had two touchdown rushes of 65 yards or more.
Their advantage swelled to 10 thanks to a field goal that was set up by the Jets defense. Bortles was picked off by defensive lineman Kony Ealy, who batted the quarterback’s screen attempt before catching it and being taken down at Jacksonville’s seven-yard-line.
After a 41-yard completion to Robbie Anderson, the Jets looked poised to blow the game open at the start of the fourth quarter as they made their way to the Jaguars’ 14-yard-line.
But in typical Jets fashion, McCown’s screen pass on the very next play went off the shoulder of Powell and because it was a backward pass, was ruled a fumble. Jaguars linebacker Myles Jack was quick to pounce on the ball and return it 81 yards to bring the visitors back to within three.
New York was burned by a short pass once again as they were trying to run out the clock. With 3:19 left in the game McCown was looking for Powell on third down to try and ice the game, but the back slipped with the ball approaching, leaving A.J. Bouye an uncontested chance to intercept the pass, which he did on the Jets’ 35-yard-line.
It allowed the Jaguars to convert the game-tying field goal with 46 seconds remaining, sending things to overtime.