The Jets dropped to 2-11 Sunday, as for a second straight week they lost a close game. This time New York fought back in the second half but nonetheless fell, 30-24, to the Vikings, a team that has playoff ambitions.
Despite their struggles this season, the Jets have played a number of close games, last week and this week being losses with a field goal as the difference.
A 44-yard field goal from Nick Folk late in the fourth quarter tied the game at 24-24 to send things into overtime. Forced into a punt on their first possession of OT, Vikings quarterback Teddy Bridgewater connected with Jarius Wright on third down for an 87-yard catch-and-run to win the game.
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To their credit, the Jets fought back after a tough start as three touchdown passes put the Vikings up 21-12 with 13:30 left in the second quarter, a lead Minnesota would take into halftime.
Quarterback Geno Smith, in his second start since being benched in Week 8, threw an interception on the game's first drive and was nearly picked off in the second quarter. Last week, the Jets went heavy on the run as Smith threw just 13 passes. Against the Vikings, Smith was serviceable at 18-for-29 for 254 yards with one touchdown and one interception.
But when his team needed him the most in overtime, he was unable to get the Jets into field goal range.
3 things we learned:
A first quarter interception by Gerald Hodges, where the former Penn State linebacker sat underneath in coverage and read quarterback Geno Smith's eyes perfectly, was the pick-six that gave the Vikings an early 7-0 lead. And then with the Jets down 21-12 in the second quarter, the offense had pieced together a nice 75-yard drive but running back Chris Ivory fumbled on the goal line. The Jets appeared poised to cut the Vikings lead, but another untimely turnover led to more offensive frustration. Red zone turnovers have been a problem this year for the Jets and this one cost them a chance at a win.
Against the team that drafted him, wide receiver Percy Harvin had a very solid game. His touchdown grab with 7:35 left in the first quarter saw him make a nice adjustment on an under-thrown ball in the end zone and he had a 55-yard catch earlier in the game as well. When stacked against just one catch on three targets for six yards in the Monday night loss, it is clear just how much potential Harvin brings to this offense with six catches for 124 yards and a touchdown. He also added some sizzle on special teams, including a 47-yard return.
Folk is Back
One week after he missed two field goals in a 16-13 loss to the Dolphins, kicker Nick Folk was back to being automatic. He made five field goals, including the 44-yard field goal late in the fourth quarter to make it a 24-24 game. His hip injury didn't hold him back this week as he continues to build a resume for the Pro Bowl. Without Folk, the Jets offense would have struggled to put up points.