It certainly was not the game everyone expected. Denver, dragging themselves into the game with a three-win record, was slated to be on the other end of the blowout. The Jets were riding hot off of an impressive 38-31 victory over Kansas City, but simply did not show up to this one. Neither team performed as they were expected to, but that was not good news in New York’s case.
The Jets ultimately fell to the Broncos 23-0 at Mile High Stadium.
The Jets’ offense never connected, tallying negative yards in the first quarter for the first time since 2003. Two early turnovers seemed to doom the Jets right off the bat, giving Denver a chance to pull ahead 13-0 by halftime. Things didn’t get much better in the second half, as an apparent injury sidelined quarterback Josh McCown, allowing Bryce Petty to play for the first time this season.
Things still didn’t click, as Petty attempted nine passes, completing only two of them for 14 yards. Any juice that the offense had seemed to run out, and the Jets were shut out for the first time since week 5 of the 2014 season (31-0 against the San Diego Chargers).
The loss all but seals the Jets’ fate, as they will miss the playoffs for a seventh straight season. Their last appearance came in 2010, ending in an AFC Championship loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Early reports have stated that Josh McCown has suffered a broken hand, almost surely putting an end to his season. The 38 year old veteran was enjoying a career year, throwing for 2,880 yards and 18 touchdowns prior to his injury. This opens the door for Bryce Petty and Christian Hackenberg to playtime, as the Jets will have some decisions to make regarding their quarterback room in the offseason.
New York will fly to New Orleans next Sunday to take on the Saints, hoping to put this weekend behind them.