Playing their first game of the year without injured quarterback Mark Sanchez, the Jets beat the Tampa Bay Buccaneers 26-3 to improve to 7-6 on the season. It wasn’t pretty, but it was a win.
Kellen Clemens got the start after Sanchez sprained a PCL in his left knee in last week’s win against the Bills, his first in two years. Despite a decisive win, Clemens’ play certainly made fans pray that Sanchez returns next week.
Clemens finished with 111 yards on 12 pass completions.
With Clemens at the helm, the Jets relied heavily on the running game and got very solid production out of their league leading running backs.
Thomas Jones finished with 24 carries for 99 yards and two touchdowns, Danny Woodhead put up 4 runs for 18 yards, and Shonn Greene added six rushes for 41 yards .
It was the Jets defense that really won the game. After allowing just 15 total offensive yards in the first half, Tampa finished with six points on just 124 total yards.
The win was a huge one for the Jets who improved their playoff hopes. The Jets are currently 2nd in the AFC East after New England edged the Panthers to move to 8-5 and Miami beat the Jaguars to move to 7-6. Miami is now in the second Wild Card slot having beaten the Jets and Jaguars who along with the Ravens are 7-6, on the outside looking in.
The Jets have a tough chance to making the playoffs and face a very tough schedule in the final three weeks of the season. They will face the 6-7 Falcons (who may or may not have QB Matt Ryan or RB Michael Turner) followed by the undefeated Colts and then the AFC North leading Bengals.