The Bills made a few big plays Thursday night and made it interesting late, but otherwise got handled by the Jets.
Don’t be fooled by the final score of 37-31. The Bills took a third-quarter lead on a pair of big plays, but the Jets dominated from there the way they did for much of the first half en route to their first win.
Matt Forte ran for 100 yards and three touchdowns, but it was the play of Jets quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick that exposed the Bills’ defense. Fitzpatrick completed 24-of-34 passes for 374 yards and a touchdown, and three of his receivers had at least 90 receiving yards.
Fitzpatrick had been 1-8 in nine previous starts against Rex Ryan-coached defenses, but past the first drive Thursday night he was at least a step ahead of the Bills. The Jets had to recover a late onside kick and then drain the clock to basically lock up the victory, and even that final sequence summed up the night. The Bills had previously burned a timeout with 7:11 left with backup quarterback E.J. Manuel in the game — then didn’t convert a fourth down run after the timeout.
Bills quarterback Tyrod Taylor threw touchdown passes of 84 yards to Marquise Goodwin and 71 to Greg Salas, but Taylor was picked off on the first play of the fourth quarter and the Bills didn’t run a play inside the Jets’ 20-yard line until the final 90 seconds of the game.
The Bills just couldn’t keep up with Eric Decker — or any of the Jets’ receivers — and couldn’t get off the field. Decker caught six passes for 126 yards and a touchdown. Brandon Marshall caught six passes for 101 yards, and Quincy Enunwa caught six passes for 92 yards.
The Jets had the ball for 39:12 and rolled up 493 yards of offense.
The Jets (1-1) are at the Chiefs in Week 3. The Bills (0-2) host the Cardinals.