Despite a spirited effort, it appeared as though the NY Jets were going to be 0-2 to start the 2022 NFL season. The team's September losing streak would continue, dating back to the 2018 season. The running total would have been 14 games.
But a funny thing happened on the way to fate. Fortune finally favored the New York Jets. Down 30-17 with under two minutes left, the Jets rallied with two touchdown scores, with the assist from an onside kick recovery, to win the game 31-30, stunning the Cleveland Browns.
The football gods shined on the Jets for a change. Sunday's victory doesn't occur if not for a missed extra point, a blown coverage, and an onside kick, but the Jets' head coach played a part in being bold before the game and during.
It's been a while since the Jets had something to feel great about. Let's go over some of the takeaways from Week 2's amazing come-from-behind win.
1. Robert Saleh and Brant Boyer helped keep the NY Jets' chances alive early with gutsy play calls
Things definitely did not break right for the Jets early on. A quick three-and-out, courtesy of a blown call, on what should have been a first down completion to Tyler Conklin, and a slow start by the team's defense.
Down 7-0, the Jets were facing a 4th-and-1 near midfield. Robert Saleh took a chance and put faith in his special teams by going for a fake punt pass. Fortune favored the bold move when punter Braden Mann found Jeff Smith for the first down conversion. The 17-yard completion kept the Jets' hopes alive.
Hindsight is certainly 20/20, but even if the play had backfired, Saleh made the right call, trying to shift momentum in his team's favor.
And credit to Brant Boyer and his unit for executing the play perfectly, especially considering the fact that Braden Mann was limited all week in practice leading into the game. There's a legitimate question, as to how much he practiced that fake punt this past week.
When you are a young team on the road. A game can turn on you fast if you fall behind early. The Jets coaching brain trust did what was necessary to avoid that scenario.
It was a rough week for Robert Saleh, who has been in the crosshairs, taking receipts. He was willing to bet on his team's chances early and was rewarded for his faith late. Saleh was bold in his takes off the field and then produced bold ones on the field, and the football gods rewarded him.