It had been 35 days since the New York Jets tasted victory, but Rex Ryan and company finally saw the fruits of their labor on Sunday in St. Louis. Behind a bruising ground game, quarterback Mark Sanchez connected with nine different receivers for 178 yards including a 25-yard touchdown to Chaz Schilens in the second quarter to put the Jets ahead to stay.
Most impressively, Sanchez made good on 15-of-20 pass attempts producing a season-high 75 percent completion percentage. For the first time since a Week 6 win over the Indianapolis Colts the Jets did not commit a turnover, while Ryan’s defensive unit forced two fumbles and intercepted St. Louis’ gunslinger Sam Bradford.
It was an inauspicious start to the contest for Gang Green as St. Louis took its opening drive 86 yards on 13 plays punctuated by a one yard touchdown fling to wide receiver Brandon Gibson. Trailing 7-0, the Jets’ faced the prospect of a four-game losing streak and a potential loss to former offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer, who was jettisoned from New York just a season ago.
Sanchez refused to let his team’s postseason hopes die in the Gateway to the West and rallied his unit for 27 unanswered points before St. Louis added a window dressing touchdown to make it 27-13 with 5:43 remaining in the game. The Green-and-White prevailed and now find themselves right in the thick of things in the AFC playoff picture.
As the Jets prepare for their primetime matchup with the New England Patriots on Thanksgiving Day, another win could serve to propel a team whose playoff chances were left for dead prior to Week 11.