Jets winded in Buffalo following 37-14 loss
ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. (AP) — First, Geno Smith had the wind knocked out of him.
Then the gusting winds at Buffalo played havoc with the New York Jets rookie quarterback’s passes.
Add it up, and it was a bad day all around for Smith and the Jets who came unraveled in a 37-14 loss to the AFC East rival Bills on Sunday.
“The way I can sum this game for myself is awful,” he said. “Extremely frustrated.”
Smith was assessing an outing in which he went 8 of 23 for 103 yards passing, threw three interceptions and lost a fumble before being pulled in the fourth quarter in favor of backup Matt Simms.
It was a game in which the Bills defense got after the quarterback from the beginning. Smith had to leave for one play during the first drive after being struck in the midsection by defensive tackle Marcell Dareus.
“First play of the game, I knew we had him,” Dareus said. “From then on, he looked crazy, looked scattered.”
Safety Jairus Byrd had two interceptions. Defensive tackle Kyle Williams had two sacks and forced a fumble. And safety Da’Norris Searcy returned an interception 32 yards for a touchdown.
The Bills (4-7) snapped a three-game skid and enter their bye week by winning for only the second time in seven games.
The Jets (5-5), coming off their bye, became the NFL’s first team to alternate wins and losses through the first 10 games of the season.
Here’s five things that stood out as Buffalo defeated New York for only the second time in nine meetings:
MANUEL RESPONDS: Bills starter EJ Manuel bounced back in winning Round 2 in the matchup of the first two quarterbacks selected in the NFL draft in April.
Manuel, selected 16th overall, had far less difficulty dealing with the blustery conditions and 30 mph gusts. He went 20 of 28 for 245 yards and two touchdowns: a 34-yarder to T.J. Graham and a 43-yarder to rookie Marquise Grissom.
Manuel was also only sacked once after being brought down eight times in a 27-20 loss to the Jets at East Rutherford, N.J. on Sept. 22.
“He played with a lot of poise,” coach Doug Marrone said. “He really handled things well, wasn’t rattled at all the whole game.”
Manuel improved to 3-1 at home, and 3-3 overall.
Smith, a second-round pick, dropped to 1-4 on the road, where he’s thrown four touchdown passes and 10 interceptions.
BYRD’S THE WORD: After missing the offseason over a contract dispute and the first five games with foot injuries, Byrd is regaining his Pro Bowl form.
He has three interceptions in two games to give him 21 on his career.
“I don’t know when people say, ‘Am I back?’ I don’t know if I was any different,” Byrd said. “Hopefully, I’m headed in the right direction. That’s the biggest thing.”
The Bills’ four takeaways matched the number they forced in their previous four games.
BUSTED: The Bills also didn’t take too kindly upon hearing the Jets spent part of Saturday at Dave & Busters, a chain restaurant and entertainment venue in suburban Buffalo.
“Me personally, I feel they’re disrespectful in the first place, so it didn’t shock me,” Bills defensive end Mario Williams said.
Jets coach Rex Ryan defended the decision, saying it wasn’t meant to be disrespectful.
“I don’t know why that’s added motivation. We do different things when we’re on the road,” Ryan said. “We went out as a team, so that’s what we did.”
REED’S DEBUT: Jets safety Ed Reed not only played but started in his debut three days after the nine-time Pro Bowl player signed to be reunited with Ryan. He was in on three tackles, including one for a loss after seeing limited playing time that led Reed being cut by Houston.
“I’m ready for whatever,” Reed said. “Being limited over the last few weeks, I’m pretty fresh and ready to go.”
SCORING SURGE: The Bills took control by scoring 17 points over a span of 2:50 to take a 20-0 lead on Dan Carpenter’s 42-yard field goal with 1:15 left in the first half.
The surge began with Manuel hitting Graham for a score. Kyle Williams then forced a Smith fumble, which set up Frank Summer’s 3-yard touchdown run.
AP NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org