For the first time this season, Bryce Petty saw game action Sunday in Denver. After appearing in every offensive play through 12 games, Josh McCown left in the second half with a broken wrist in his left hand and Petty finished out the contest. Neither quarterback tasted success as the Jets were stymied all day and shut out by the Broncos, 23-0.
Petty, in his third year out of Baylor, took over for good with his team down 20 and the Broncos not concerned with the run game. He completed just 2-of-9 for 14 yards.
McCown exited to the locker room in the third stanza after he was sacked by OLB Von Miller and then drilled to the ground by Broncos outside linebacker Shane Ray the ensuing play, which was a 14-yard completion to RB Matt Forte.
"I looked to the right, reset, came back to Matt and when I threw it, I got hit and it kind of just rolled up," McCown said. "He (Ray) kind of rolled over me and either a knee or a foot or something caught my hand and it bent funny. I knew when it happened that it wasn't right."
Petty, entering with 2:42 remaining in the third, handled a couple of snaps in the second quarter. The gutsy McCown was hurt on an eight-yard scramble as he took shots to the midsection from both sides and slowly made his way to the visiting sideline.
"Injuries are a part of this game, but you never want them," Petty said. "For a tough a competitor as he (Josh) is, as good as a person on and off the field, it's tough. He pours his heart and his soul into the guys and coming out, being prepared and playing. You could see his emotions knowing that whatever happens with his hand whether he can go or not. You never want to see him hurt."
Petty had a 7-yard completion to Lawrence Thomas and then a 12-yard gain to reserve tight end Neal Sterling. But an illegal formation penalty pushed the Jets back, McCown returned and was promptly intercepted by safety Darian Stewart.
Against a Broncos team that entered Sunday's game 31st in both turnover differential (-16) and giveaways (27), the Jets had two giveaways in the first half. McCown, who was sacked four times and finished with just 46 yards passing, was victim of a strip-sack in the first quarter and Denver quickly capitalized on the change of possession on a Trevor Siemian scoring toss to wideout Demaryius Thomas.
After averaging 33 points a game their past two contests, the Jets offense never found its footing at Sports Authority Field at Mile High. The Green & White had -14 net yards in the opening 15 minutes and didn't get their initial first down until the second quarter.
Anderson and Keare, who combined for 30 receptions for 515 yards and three touchdowns in the Jets' last two games, had four catches for 31 yards. The Broncos limited the Jets to less than 3.0 yards per carry on the ground and the visitors were just 3-of-13 on third down while managing 100 total yards.
The Jets offense will regroup and shift focus towards preparing for the Week 15 trip to New Orleans.
"I'm ready to go," Petty said regarding if McCown can't suit up moving forward. "We've prepared, we've worked. That's a tough part about being a backup. It's limited reps, so now we'll get some reps and hopefully fix some things on film that I need to from a mental standpoint. From a preparation standpoint, nothing will change. We go in there like we're the starter and now you get to combat that with some physical reps in there, which will be good."