Drama queens: Holmes’ heroics save Jets again
The Jets’ offense made a last-gasp charge for the third straight week. After blowing a 16-point lead in the fourth quarter, Mark Sanchez led the Jets on a five-play, 72-yard touchdown drive.
Jets 30, Texans 27
What went right ...
1 Picking up the defense — The Jets’ offense made a last-gasp charge for the third straight week. After blowing a 16-point lead in the fourth quarter, Mark Sanchez led the Jets on a five-play, 72-yard touchdown drive. For the previous two weeks, the offense won on their final offensive play in overtime and on Sunday, it was a 42-yard Mark Sanchez pass to Braylon Edwards that set up Santonio Holmes' six-yard completion on their final play of regulation. “Anytime you talk about great competitors, they want the ball in crucial situations,” coach Rex Ryan said about Sanchez, who threw for 315 yards and three touchdowns. “That’s how Mark is.”
2 Right at Holmes — Santonio Holmes followed up on his walk-off score last week in Cleveland with 126 yards receiving and two scores, including the game-winning grab in the left corner of the end zone with 10 seconds left. “We’re cutting it awfully close,” Sanchez said. “I don’t think anybody has any fingernails left if they’re a Jets fan.” Typifying Holmes' effort was a play midway through the first quarter with the Jets pinned back deep in their own end. On second-and-8, Sanchez craftily stepped up to avoid the rush of Andre Smith and lofted a ball toward the sideline, in the direction of Holmes. The wide receiver had to accelerate, caught the ball in stride and then dragged both his feet to stay in bounds. It wasn't a score, but it was a savvy play by to keep the drive alive. Then, with 4:38 left in the third quarter, Holmes split the Texans secondary for a 41-yard pass and catch to put the Jets up 20-7.
3 Lock down — Darrelle Revis shut down Texans’ All-Pro Andre Johnson. He had four catches for just 32 yards.
What went wrong ...
1 Blown fourth-quarter lead — The Jets surrendered 20 straight points in 12 minutes as the Texans took a 27-23 lead with 55 seconds left. “I’m concerned with how we’re playing mentally, we have to look at it,” Ryan said. “This is the time, in the fourth quarter, when you tighten things up.”
2 Arian the Barbarian — Arian Foster had 53 of his game-high 84 yards rushing in the opening two quarters and finished with 143 total yards. Foster’s 1-yard TD plunge with 2:18 left put the Texans up 24-23.
3 Dreading Dreessen — Backup tight end Joel Dreessen caught four passes for 106 yards, including a 43-yard touchdown catch midway through the fourth quarter to make things interesting again. On the score, quarterback Matt Schaub recognized the safety blitz of both Jim Leonhard and Eric Smith and found Dreessen open away from the pressure. "We put ourselves in a bad situation a couple times and they found them," Leonhard said. The Texans utilized Dreessen's size advantage over the Jets secondary all game long. He entered the contest with just 15 catches and 215 yards receiving on the season.
Jets quick hits:
Jets right tackle Damien Woody was diagnosed with a sprained MCL. Woody suffered the injury on a play in the second quarter and limped off the field. At his postgame press conference, Ryan was unaware of Woody’s prognosis … The versatile Wayne Hunter filled in for Woody following the injury, earning praise from quarterback Mark Sanchez … It was the third straight game for the Jets to put up the winning points on their final possession, but the first time in that stretch that the score came in regulation. “Mental toughness – that’s what this streak is all about,” head coach Rex Ryan said.
Texans running back Arian Foster had 87 yards rushing against the Jets, who still have not conceded a 100-yard ground game to a rusher this season. The second-year back who went undrafted last year entered the game as the NFL’s leading rusher and the 84 yards on the ground represents his fifth-lowest rushing game of his young career. All told, however, Foster churned out an impressive 143 yards of total offense for the Texans, including two touchdowns, for an offense that managed just 200 yards minus his efforts. With his ground total on the afternoon, Foster topped 1,000 yards rushing on the season. “It is an accomplishment, a notch on the belt.”… On the other sideline, the Jets ground game struggled, one week after the running backs got the bulk of the offensive calls in Cleveland. Against the Texans, Shonn Greene and LaDainian Tomlinson combined for just 78 yards rushing. So far this season, the Jets have had just two rushers who topped 100-yards in a game this season, with Greene and Tomlinson both topping the century mark in the Week 4 win over Buffalo.
Punter Steve Weatherford had a strong afternoon, with his four punts averaging 47.5 yards per kick. Twice, Weatherford kicked the ball inside the 20-yard line and had a long of a 57 yard kick in the fourth quarter … It was a redeeming afternoon for kicker Nick Folk. Last week in Cleveland, Folk missed three of his five field goal attempts, including a chip-shot 24-yard effort in the third quarter. On Sunday, Folk converted three of four attempts, only narrowly missing a 53=yard kick in the third quarter. He missed it, as Maxwell Smart would say, “By that much”… Sticking with the special teams, Jim Leonhard had a dicing punt return in the first quarter, a 30-yard effort right through the heart of the Texans return team. The play set up the first points of the game for the Jets, a 37-yard field goal by Folk at the 11:28 mark in the first quarter.
Jerricho Cotchery, who suffered a groin tear last Sunday in Cleveland, did not dress for the game. About his injury, Cotchery said “I feel a lot better right now,” but there is no update about his availability for Thursday’s home game against Cincinnati … In place of Cotchery, the Jets called up second-year wide receiver Patrick Turner, who was a college teammate of Mark Sanchez at USC. Turner was a third-round pick by Miami who was cut this preseason and picked up by the Jets and activated off the practice squad on Friday. Turner recorded his first career catch, a 21-yard pass from his old college teammate. “The first of many I hope,” Turner said.