If the Jets offense can play the way they did on Sunday for the final three weeks of the season, they’d have a pretty fair shot at grabbing the sixth seed in the AFC.
Given the results of that offense in the 12 games before Sunday’s 37-27 victory over the Raiders, that’s not a great bet to make but it’s one you can make if you choose because their playoff hopes remain alive. How good they are will depend on other results, but the Jets did what they had to do.
They did it behind an offense that looked functional for the first time in weeks. Geno Smith completed 16-of-25 passes for 219 yards and a touchdowns while running for 50 yards and another touchdown. It was the kind of performance that generated much excitement about Smith early this season, although more than a month of horrible play will probably keep everyone in check after this game. Chris Ivory ran well, Kellen Winslow was productive and the Jets moved the ball all day without much issue.
Can that happen against non-Raiders opponents? We’ll find out in Carolina next weekend where a much tougher defense waits to potentially snuff out any playoff life left in the Jets.
If the Raiders were trying to spark Matt McGloin by pulling him for a series in the first half, it paid off eventually. McGloin threw a pair of touchdowns in the second half and looked much more assured running the offense than he did immediately after returning to the game. He wound up 18-of-29 for 239 yards and two touchdowns, and continued to show an ability to throw the ball that Terrelle Pryor hasn’t shown this season.
That wasn’t enough to get a win, but that should be enough for him to hold onto the job for the rest of the season.