On Sunday the New York Jets traveled to Tampa Bay to take on the Buccaneers in a quest to get back to .500.
This was the 12th all-time meeting between these two franchises, with the Jets having won 10 of the previous 11 meetings.
The game featured the battle of journeyman quarterbacks, as Ryan Fitzpatrick and Josh McCown have combined to play for 15 different teams, the most of any quarterback matchup in NFL history.
After scoring 34 points against the Bills, the Jets offense couldn’t do much right against the 2-6 Buccaneers.
The Jets totaled just 275 yards for the game, most of them coming once the game was decided in the final six minutes. They were unable to sustain drives all game, finishing 3-15 on third down.
Here is how the game broke down. Events occur in real time.
The New York Jets went three and out on their first two possessions as did Tampa Bay on their first possession.
On the Buccaneers second possession, Ryan Fitzpatrick converted three third downs on a 17-play 77 yard drive that culminated with a Patrick Murray 33-yard field goal.
The Buccaneers outgained the Jets 95-55 in the first quarter.
After collecting a first down on their third possession, McCown and the offense stalled again. On Tampa’s following possession, the Jets defense held the Buccaneers to a three-and-out.
On the Jets fourth possession, Josh McCown forced a deep throw to Robby Anderson that was intercepted by Brent Grimes. Grimes returned the ball to the Jets 32, giving Tampa great field position. In true Ryan Fitzpatrick form, he responded to his good fortune with an interception of his own. Fitzpatrick’s throw to Chris Godwin was underthrown and intercepted by Darryl Roberts.
Taking over at their own five yard line, the Jets offense was unable to move again, going three and out for the third time.
After forcing a three-and-out of their own, the Jets offense finally got going in their final drive of the first half.
McCown drove the Jets deep into Buccaneers territory, but penalties pushed them back after getting as close as the 12-yard line. Chandler Catanzaro was forced to kick a 47-yard field goal after the Jets were stopped on third and 27. The Jets drive of 15 plays and 51 yards tied the game at three heading into the half.
First Half Stats
Josh McCown: 6-16, 82 yards INT
Ryan Fitzpatrick: 6-12, 62 yards, INT
The Buccaneers got the ball to start the second half and Fitzpatrick drove them 44 yards on nine plays culminating with a 49-yard field goal by Patrick Murray.
The Jets offense that showed life at the end of the first half was unable to move the ball on their first possession going three and out for the fourth time.
The Buccaneers recorded a first down on their next possession, but their drive stalled after that, meanwhile the Jets offense continued their second half struggles with their fifth three-and-out of the game.
The Jets defense came up big again on the Bucs next possession, forcing another three-and-out.
The Buccaneers defense then made a huge play when they forced a fumble by Bilal Powell. Originally ruled down by contact, Dirk Koetter challenged the call and it was reversed, giving the Buccaneers great field position at midfield.
Ryan Fitzpatrick took advantage of the great field position, driving the Buccaneers 32 yards on seven plays. Patrick Murray connected on his third field goal of the day, this time from 37-yards, to give the Buccaneers a 9-3 lead.
The third quarter ended with the Jets facing a second and 16. Overall, the Jets collected just one first down in the quarter and were outgained 92-30.
The fourth quarter started like the previous three quarters for the Jets offense with them going three-and-out for the sixth time.
On the Buccaneers first possession of the fourth quarter, a Jets penalty on third and ten gave Tampa a first down, than Charles Sims ran for 21 yards on third and 15 to keep the drive alive. That led to the Buccaneers first TD of the game, as Tampa drove 81 yards on 15 plays ending with a six-yard TD pass from Fitzpatrick to Sims.
Down 12 points with 6:01 remaining, the Jets offense needed to respond immediately to get back into the game.
Josh McCown drove the Jets to the Buccaneers 25, but their drive stalled on fourth and six when he overthrew Robby Anderson in the end zone.
The Jets were able to salvage a TD late when McCown did connect with Robby Anderson for a 38-yard TD. It was the fourth straight game that Anderson caught a TD pass.
Bilal Powell’s fumble turned a 6-3 game into a 9-3 game. The Jets defense then tired and was unable to stop the Buccaneers on key third downs on Tampa’s TD drive.
The Jets penalties killed them all game. They committed eight penalties for 77 yards. Most of them either extended Buccaneers drives or pushed back their offense.
The Buccaneers defense came into the game with an NFL-low eight sacks. They recorded six sacks on Sunday.
Despite passing for 262 yards, Josh McCown was awful for most of the day. 141 of those passing yards came in the New York Jets final two drives when Tampa’s defense backed off.
The Jets have a bye week then return home on November 26 to take on the Panthers.
Mark Kelly covers the New York Jets for ProFootballSpot.com. You can follow him on twitter @CkmagicSports. Looking for more Jets news and features? Like our Jets Facebook page and also follow @spot_jets on Twitter.