The New York Jets returned home hopeful after a late comeback victory that improved their record to 3-2, facing the winless (0-4) Pittsburgh Steelers. The offense moved the ball well at times, but the Steelers held them to only six first half points in a 19-6 Jets loss.
On the Steelers second drive, Muhammad Wilkerson almost sacked Ben Roethlisberger in the end zone for a safety. After the Steelers were forced to punt, Jeremy Kerley returned the punt inside Steelers territory. Then the Jets mixed in runs by Bilal Powell, a screen to Mike Goodson, and passes to Powell and Jeff Cumberland to move down inside the five yard line. The Jets could not convert on a fourth down and one yard play so after a delay of game penalty, Nick Folk made the 25-yard attempt to open the scoring, 3-0. Garrett McIntyre sacked Roethlisberger on the next Pittsburgh drive.
Leger Douzable and Calvin Pace combined on a sack of Big Ben later in the same drive. Big catches by Miller and Brown though set up Shaun Suisham with a 46-yard field goal to tie the game. A sack of Geno Smith ended the next Jets drive with another Ryan Quigley punt. The Steelers drove and Suisham connected on a 33-yard attempt to make it 6-3 Steelers. The following drive ended after another sack, and on second down Smith overthrew a wide open Stephen Hill who ran past both defenders on what would have been a sure touchdown grab had he hit Hill in stride. Suisham made a 48-yard attempt with under 50 seconds to go in the half. Geno Smith drove the Jets down the field with a mix of catches to Clyde Gates and Stephen Hill, who took a shot from Polamalu but held onto the ball. Folk made a 39-yard attempt to make it 9-6 at the half.
After the Jets went three and out, the Steelers took over. A few plays into the drive, Roethlisberger found a wide open Sanders for an 55-yard touchdown catch. Antonio Cromartie had been in coverage. Pittsburgh was now up 16-6. On the subsequent drive, Smith found Cumberland for 28 yards to Pittsburgh 46 yard line. Runs by Chris Ivory and Powell got them a first down inside 25 yard line. Then Smith threw his first bad pass of the game when Ryan Clark intercepted him on a pass where he overthrew Konrad Reuland and he was triple covered. The Jets defense held and didn't allow any points of the turnover. Cromartie was called for a pass interference penalty that set up the Steelers at the Jets 36 yard line several plays into the next drive.
The Steelers got down to the two yard line with first down and goal to go. Damon Harrison snuffed the run for a loss on the first play. On third down the Steelers went for another end around, but David Harris knocked Brown out of bounds to make it a 34-yard field goal attempt that Suisham connected on to end the scoring, 19-6. Clyde Gates went out holding his left hand on the next Jets possession. Wilkerson recorded a sack of Big Ben on the Steelers following drive. The Jets drove inside the 15 yard line on passes to Hill, Cumberland and Nelson and a nice run by Goodson mixed in. Unfortunately Smith threw an ill-advised pass that was picked by Timmons to end the drive. On the tackle Goodson collided with Brian Winters and left the game injured.
At halftime the Jets honored former defensive lineman and member of the New York Sack Exchange, Marty Lyons, as he joined the Ring of Honor. The team will stay at home and play their bitter division rival, the New England Patriots, Sunday at 1 p.m. looking to rebound in a season that has alternated wins and losses.
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