Jones' 3 TDs lead Jets past Bengals

October 12, 2008 1:22:10 PM PDT
Rested and rusty after a bye week, the New York Jets made just enough plays to beat the winless Cincinnati Bengals. Thomas Jones ran for two touchdowns, including a 1-yarder late in the game, and caught a pass from Brett Favre for a score as the Jets beat the Bengals 26-14 on Sunday.

The Jets (3-2) improved to 3-0 in games immediately following a bye under coach Eric Mangini, but this one was far from easy. With New York holding a tentative 20-14 lead late in the game, the Jets needed a 10-play, 41-yard drive by Favre that ate up the clock and sealed the victory over the Bengals (0-6).

Facing third-and-4 from the Bengals 7, Favre hit Chris Baker for 6 yards. Jones followed with a 1-yard rumble into the end zone with 2:22 left.

Favre, coming off a six-touchdown performance in a 56-35 victory over Arizona, wasn't nearly as explosive in this one. He finished 25-for-33 for 189 yards, a touchdown and two interceptions. Jones finished with 17 carries for 65 yards and had his first career three-TD game for the Jets, wearing their navy and gold throwback New York Titans uniforms for the second straight game.

Ryan Fitzpatrick, playing for the injured Carson Palmer, couldn't get much going for the Bengals. He was 20-of-33 for 152 yards as Cincinnati dropped to 0-6 for the third time since 2000.

Cincinnati took a 7-0 lead on the third play from scrimmage, when Antwan Odom zipped past Baker and sacked Favre and forced a fumble. Chinedum Ndukwe picked up the bouncing ball and ran 15 yards into the end zone to give the Bengals the lead 1:24 into the game.

It didn't last long as New York tied it with a 2-yard touchdown reception by Jones with 7:44 left in the first quarter. The score capped a strange drive during which Favre had thrown two other touchdown passes that were called back by penalties.

On third-and-goal from the 4, Favre scrambled to his right and appeared as though he was going to run it in before tossing the ball to Dustin Keller as he was being hit. The score came back because right guard Brandon Moore was called for being an ineligible man downfield.

On the next play from the 9, Favre hit Jerricho Cotchery in the end zone, but the play was called back because of offensive pass interference by Chansi Stuckey. With third-and-goal from the 19, Favre threw incomplete to Laveranues Coles, but Leon Hall was called for illegal contact - giving the Jets an automatic first down.

Three plays later, Favre found a wide-open Jones running into the right side of the end zone.

Jay Feely gave the Jets a 10-7 lead with a 38-yard field goal 4:04 into the second quarter, one play after Coles couldn't hold on to a throw in the end zone.

New York then took advantage of a mistake by Fitzpatrick, who fumbled on third down when he was sacked by Hank Poteat, and Calvin Pace recovered the ball. After a 6-yard run by Jones and an 11-yard run by Brad Smith on a double-reverse, Jones ran it into the end zone from 7 yards to make it 17-7 with 7:57 left in the half.

Fitzpatrick ran it in over the right guard from 1 yard to make it 17-14 with 8 seconds left before halftime. The play capped a 14-play, 66-yard drive in which Fitzpatrick was 8-of-10 for 64 yards and led the Bengals to their first five first downs of the game.

Feely's 43-yard field goal with 5:36 left in the third quarter made it 20-14.


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