After the Jets gave up a fourth-quarter lead and lost to the Falcons by five points last Sunday, running back Matt Forte said that he was surprised that the offensive game plan didn’t call for running the ball more than 22 times on a rainy afternoon.
Forte spoke to offensive coordinator John Morton about his feelings and said Morton was “open-minded” about a different approach. Morton deployed such an approach against the Bills on Thursday night and the results made Forte look good.
The Jets ran 41 times for 194 yards and Forte scored twice while running 14 times for 77 yards. Bilal Powell had nine carries for 74 yards and the Jets used the run to control the game on their way to a 34-21 win that snapped a three-game losing streak.
“We had some difficulties and some frustrations on a short week and addressed them on Monday, and then come out on a Thursday game and come out and run the ball like we did … we did a great job of that,” Forte said, via the New York Post. “Kudos to coach Johnny Mo of sticking with the run like he promised that he would do.”
The Jets matched their run game with a relentless defensive effort that resulted in seven sacks and three turnovers in what looked exactly like the blueprint for their best-case scenario this season. Repeating that against Tampa in Week 10 will send them into the bye week with a 5-5 record that few predicted they’d reach when the season got underway.