After coming off what should’ve been a “confidence building” win last week against New England, the New York Jets turned in a lackluster performance in Cincinnati on Sunday.
The Jets defense, which was a key component in their upset win over the Patriots last week, simply couldn’t contain the upstart Bengals and their high-flying offense. Cincinnati quarterback Andy Dalton torched “Gang Green’s” defense with 325 yards passing and five touchdowns in a 49-9 pounding of New York on Sunday.
New York, which came in looking for a win to prove how legit a contender they would be in the fully-loaded AFC Conference, fell in an early 21-3 hole that they weren’t able to overcome. Jets rookie QB Geno Smith struggled mightily for most of the day, throwing a pair of interceptions that were returned for Bengals’ TD’s. He finished 20-of-30 for 159 yards and no touchdowns.
"That was ugly, to say the least," Jets head coach Rex Ryan said afterwards. "We’re really fortunate that it only counts as one loss because you get your butt kicked like that, you know, we’re fortunate that that’s all it is."
Aside from the offensive output from Cincy, the Bengals’ defense also played a role, applying pressure on Smith all afternoon and forcing the rookie into a series of throws the opposition read perfectly. The result was two “pick six” plays by Chris Crocker and Adam “Pacman” Jones that sent New York to their most lopsided loss in three years.
If there’s one bright spot to take away from a 40-point blowout, the nine points the Jets scored came off the foot of kicker Nick Folk, including a 50-yarder in the second half. Folk has converted on all 19 of his attempts this season, yet the Jets were still left out of the end zone, and such points will certainly be a necessity to come by if they plan to make a run at New England in the AFC East Division.
New York got off to an inauspicious start in the first half, as the Dalton hooked up with receiver Marvin Jones for two TD’s that gave the home team a 21-6 lead. Dalton and Jones would hook up for another pair of second half scores – sandwiched around the “pick six” plays -- to add to a miserable afternoon on both sides of the ball for the Jets.
New York will limp back to MetLife Stadium next week, needing a near flawless performance against Drew Brees and the New Orleans Saints. Starting off slow against them could make for another ugly outcome, according to Rex Ryan.
"If we don’t play better than we did today then hell yeah, that guy will break every record known to man against us,” said Ryan. “We’ll play better."
Check out game highlights here.