It is now five years without the playoffs for the New York Jets, a 22-17 loss at the Buffalo Bills on Sunday dashing their postseason dreams. A day that started with the Jets controlling their own destiny now sees them heading to the golf courses yet again.
The Jets came into Sunday’s game against the Bills needing to win to get in, instead seeing their playoff hopes give way to sloppy play and terrible execution. Three interceptions by Ryan Fitzpatrick in the fourth quarter doomed the Jets in their comeback bid to topple the Bills, who are coached by Rex Ryan, fired by the Jets last season.
The Jets went down 13-0 midway through the second quarter in what was perhaps their worst first half of the season. While they improved in the second half, in particular on defense, the inability to get a play when it mattered most in the fourth quarter doomed this team to their first loss since Nov. 22.
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This is the Jets longest streak without making the postseason since a stretch of six seasons from 1992-1997
Three Things We Learned from the Jets in Week 17:
1. They’re close but …
No cigar here for the 10-6 Jets, who just narrowly missed out on a return to the playoffs. Sloppiness in terms of not just penalties but execution killed the Jets early in this game, just as it cost them early in the season. The Jets used two timeouts in the first 17 minutes of the game and played sloppy and loose for much of the first half. Then in the second half, they made it a game and seemed destined to take the lead down 19-17 in the fourth quarter but Fitzpatrick threw a red zone interception. It was a tough way to go down for the Jets.
2. Wind, Wind Go Away
It was a cold, windy day in Buffalo, the kind of weather that the Bills love for a homefield advantage and opponents hate to play in. It wreaked havoc on a first quarter punt by Ryan Quigley and also held up a Fitzpatrick deep pass to Kenbrell Thompkins that fell incomplete. But it was the Jets own inept play that, coupled with the rough conditions, made this a very long afternoon. At the end of the day, they had no one to blame but themselves.
3. What a season
The Jets didn’t make the playoffs but talk to any fan of this franchise last August and ask them if they’d take double-digit wins in this rebuilding year and they would surely take it. Brandon Marshall tied the franchise mark for most receiving touchdowns in a season and Fitzpatrick set the single-season mark for passing touchdowns. There is a good, young core in place here and some nice pieces to build on in 2016 and beyond.