On Sunday, the Atlanta Falcons visited MetLife Stadium to take on the New York Jets. The last time the Falcons visited New Jersey as an opponent to face the Jets, they played at the Meadowlands.
This was the 12th all-time meeting between these two franchises, with the Falcons holding a 6-5 edge.
For the third straight game, the Jets were unable to hold a second-half lead as penalties and turnovers led to a 25-20 loss.
The Jets have now been outscored 76-20 in the fourth quarter this season, a big reason why they find themselves with a 3-5 record.
Here is how the game broke down. Events were recorded in real time.
For the third straight week, the New York Jets took the opening kickoff and drove for a touchdown.
Josh McCown went 4-4 for 36 yards on the 75-yard drive, hitting four different receivers. The drive culminated with McCown connecting with Eric Tomlinson on a 20-yd TD pass.
On the Falcons first drive, the Jets continued with their recent trend of forcing turnovers. Jordan Jenkins recovered a botched snap by Matt Ryan, giving the Jets the ball at Atlanta’s 34-yard line. However, no damage was done for the Falcons and the Jets went three-and-out and Chandler Catanzaro pushed a 46-yard FG attempt to the right.
Matt Ryan was able to take advantage of the Jets inability to convert the turnover into points, leading Atlanta on a 74-yard drive using his tight ends. Ryan connected with Austin Hooper three times for 41 yards, ending with a 1-yard TD pass.
The first quarter came to an end with the Falcons botching a snap for the second time, giving the Jets the ball deep in Atlanta territory at their 20. However, a holding call pushed the Jets back and as the first quarter ended the Jets had the ball at Atlanta’s 30-yard line facing a 1st and 20.
In a very interesting stat, both teams had the same amount of passing yards and rushing yards in the first quarter (25 rush, 56 pass – 81 total).
For the second straight time, the Jets were unable to take advantage of the Falcons mistakes, losing six yards on four plays. However, this time Catanzaro did connect on his 43-yard attempt, giving the Jets a 10-7 lead.
The Falcons tied the game at 10 when Ryan led them down the field for the second time today, going 70 yards on 12 plays. The Jets caught a break on third and goal when Austin Hooper dropped a sure TD pass.
After the Jets stopped the Falcons near their own goal line, they were to take advantage of a short field. Josh McCown drove the offense 43 yards on five plays and ended with a 24-yard TD pass to Robby Anderson.
On the Falcons final drive of the first half, it looked like the Jets would stop them when Ryan threw an incomplete pass on third down. However, Darryl Roberts was flagged for an illegal hit, giving Atlanta a first down.
Ryan took advantage of his second chance, driving the Falcons into field goal range where Matt Bryant connected on a 45-yard field goal as the half ended.
First Half Stats
Josh McCown: 12-16, 112 yards 2 TD
Matt Ryan: 12-19, 145 yards, TD
The Falcons and Jets traded three-and-outs to start the second half, with each team’s tight ends being stopped a yard short of a first down on completions.
The Jets special teams then pinned the Falcons deep in their own territory, downing Lachlan Edwards punt at the 1-yard line. For the second time in the game, the Jets defense held the Falcons who punted from their own end zone, giving the Jets the ball at Atlanta’s 45-yard line.
Penalties and poor play calling pushed the Jets backwards, as for the third time they were unable to take advantage of great field position, going three-and-out. When Edwards punt traveled through the end zone, the Falcons took over at their own 20.
Ryan immediately went to work, connecting with Julio Jones on a 54-yard pass to move Atlanta to the Jets 27. However, the Jets defense held Atlanta there and when Matt Bryant connected on his third field goal of the day from 37-yards, the Falcons had cut the Jets lead to one.
On the Jets next drive, Robby Anderson made an incredible catch on third and eight, giving the Jets a first down the first time in the second half. Another McCown completion on third down, this time to Matt Forte, moved the ball inside the Falcons 25. After two short runs the Jets faced a third and nine as the third quarter ended.
The Falcons dropped defense came up big, sacking McCown on third down. That forced Chandler Catanzaro to make a 48-yard field goal, but he missed wide right again, giving Atlanta the ball back down one.
Atlanta broke their second big play of the second half on their first play after the missed field goal, as Tevin Coleman went 52-yards on a handoff, moving the ball to the Jets 10-yard line. It was Atlanta’s longest run of the season.
On third and goal, Ryan connected with Muhammad Sanu who beat rookie Jamal Adams in the back of the end zone for an eight-yard TD catch. Atlanta then went for two, but once again had problems with the snap and the Jets stopped them.
Knowing the needed to get their offense in gear, the Jets were able to put together a drive that ended with a Catanzaro 46-yard field goal. McCown took the Jets 52 yards on seven plays. Key plays on the drive were a 24-yard pass to Robby Anderson and an unsportsmanlike penalty on Atlanta for a late hit on Josh McCown.
Helped by two penalties on Atlanta that set up a third and 25, the Jets were able to force the Falcons to punt. However, Jeremy Kerley misjudged a great punt by Matt Bosher, giving Atlanta the ball back at their 13-yard line.
The Jets defense stiffened and held the Falcons to their fourth field goal of the game. Matt Bryant’s 29-yard field goal gave Atlanta a 25-20 lead.
The Falcons then forced the Jets three-and-out and looked to put the game away when Andre Roberts went 80-yards on a punt return. However, an illegal block nullified that.
The Jets then held the Falcons on third down that gave them the ball back at their 4-yard line with 1:07 left down by five and no timeouts left.
The Jets got as far as their 38-yard line before time ran out.
For the New York Jets their inability to sustain drives and stay away from penalties and turnovers at the worst time, killed them again.
Jeremy Kerley’s fumble of a punt deep in Jets territory was the turning point.
Josh McCown: 26-33, 257 yards 2 TD
Matt Ryan: 18-29, 254 yards, 2 TD
The New York Jets host the Buffalo Bills on Thursday Night Football.