After a season where the Jets splintered apart and missed the playoffs with an 8-8 record, 2012 got off to a much better start with a 48-28 win over the Bills. It wasn’t supposed to be a blowout, but the Jets easily handled the supposedly improved Bills pass rush.
1. The Oh So Wildcat
The reason the Jets brought in Tim Tebow was specifically to run the Wildcat and after keeping it under wraps during preseason, the gimmick offense was unveiled against the Bills. Tebow was in on the first play from scrimmage, lining up in the slot as the passing play went the opposite direction. It was rather tame stuff from Tebow in the Wildcat, which looked more like a traditional offense than anything game-changing. Chances are the Jets figured they could beat hapless Buffalo without unveiling too much of their offense, so the Wildcat will remain a bit of a mystery for another week.
2. Finding paydirt
Much was made of the Jets’ inability to score in preseason, with the starting offense failing to get a touchdown. It took until preseason game No. 4 when Greg McElroy and the backups were on the field for the offense to reach the end zone. At first it seemed like Sunday wouldn’t be such a fun day for the unit. Quarterback Mark Sanchez threw an interception on the seventh play of the first drive on an ill-conceived shovel pass to Jeff Cumberland that was easily picked off by the Bills linebacker Bryan Scott. To his credit, Sanchez and the offense rebounded, sprinkling in the Wildcat with the more conventional offense in an eight-play, 61-yard drive that was capped off by a 12-yard touchdown catch by Jeremy Kerley for a 7-0 lead.
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3. Picking the Bills apart
The Jets intercepted Bills quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick twice in the first quarter. First, Darrelle Revis made an outstanding leaping pick and then Kyle Wilson had one on the next drive. The Jets capitalized on both first-quarter interceptions, scoring two touchdowns and putting the game out of reach early in the second quarter. The Jets had three interceptions on Fitzpatrick, including Antonio Cromartie’s pick-six in the third quarter. Credit to the secondary for filling the passing lanes and making the right reads on Fitzpatrick’s throws. The Jets also limited Bills receiver Stevie Johnson, who had two statement games against New York last year, to just four catches for 55 yards and a touchdown. Much of Johnson’s impact was felt in the fourth quarter with the game already decided.
Follow Jets beat writer Kristian Dyer on Twitter @KristianRDyer.