The Jets are heading to New England.
After a 17-16 victory against the third seed Indianapolis Colts, the Jets will advance to play the top seeded Patriots in New England.
After going 2-3 in their last five games of the season, the Jets seemed to find their momentum from the first half of the season. The Colts got the ball first and gained nine yards on first down, but the Jets defense held them on the next two plays and forced the Colts to punt. The Colts went three and out on their next two possessions missing on third and short both times. The Jets looked like he same dominant defense that got them through the playoffs last year.
The Colts scored their only touchdown of the game on a 50 yard pass to Pierre Garcon and led 7-0 at the half after Mark Sanchez through an interception in the end-zone at the end of the half.
Rex Ryan went into the locker room furious at his offense which couldn’t move the ball or score and his secondary which allowed the touchdown pass to Garcon. But whatever Ryan said to his team,they came out for the second half looking like a completely different team. Their offensive line abused the smaller Colts defensive linemen and Shonn Greene and Ladadian Tomlinson ran all over the Colts defense for 10 plays for 63 yaards and scored the first Jet TD of the game.
The Colts came back and scored a field goal but the Jets did the same thing on their next drive this time going 87 yards on 17 plays ending in another LT touchdown run. but Peyton Manning and the Colts offense came back and put another three points on the board to make it 14-13.
The Jets got the ball back with over 4:00 left in the game but were forced to punt. But a Colts special teamer hit punter Steve Weatherford and gave the Jets a first down. Instead of getting the ball back with 3:30 on the clock, they had to use two time outs and got e ball back with 2:36 left. But that was plenty of time for Peyton Manning to bring the Colts down the field and set up a go-ahead 50 yard field goal by Adam Vinatieri.
The Jets got the ball back with 53 seconds and two timeouts. With normal kick returner Brad Smith injured in the first quarter, Cornerback Antonio Cromartie got the chance to return kicks and ran it back to the 46 yardline.
After two passes for twenty yards, the Jets had first and ten at the Colts 34 yardline (about a 51 yard field goal). Sanchez handed te ball to Tomilinson who ran the ball up the middle for two yards to the 32 yardline (a 49 yard field goal). It appeared that Ryan was ready to run down the clock and attempt a long field goal to win the game.
But for some reason, Jim Caldwell decided to use his last timeout and stop the clock with 29 seconds left. Peyton Manning’s face was all you needed to see as he saw his head coach call a fourth timeout for the Jets. Apparently Caldwell wanted to see if his defense could force a turnover and end the game instead of letting the inconsistent Jet kicker try a 49 yard field goal to win. But intead of throwing a pick, Sanchez threw a bullet which Braylon Edwards caught at the 14 yardline (a 31 yard field goal) and the Jets stoped the clock with their last timeout with three seconds left. The snap was good, the hold was good and Nick Folk kicked it up and through the uprights to give the Jets a 17-16 win and keep them alive it the postseason.
The Jets will play at 4:30 next Sunday…in New England.