Count out the Jets at your peril.
For the second time in as many road games, the Jets rallied from a double-digit, fourth-quarter deficit and won a thriller. Rookie RB Breece Hall scored from 2 yards out with 16 seconds remaining as the Jets scored the game's final 14 points and took home a 24-20 decision over the Steelers. The Jets defense had 4 interceptions and Lamacus Joyner sealed it picking off rookie QB Kenny Pickett as time expired.
Zach Wilson made his season debut while Pickett made his NFL debut in relief of Mitch Trubisky. In an exciting Week 4 contest, the young Jets took the Steelers' best punch and answered Pitt's 20-point run with a 14-point run in another improbable victory. The Jets finished their AFC North gauntlet with a 2-2 record.
After 20 unanswered points from the Steelers, the Jets mounted a counter-offensive in the fourth quarter. Wilson converted a third down with a huge 35-yard connection to WR Garrett Wilson and kept the game alive with a 22-yarder to Corey Davis on fourth-and-7. Wilson went back to Davis for a TD as the veteran receiver ran a good route on third down and cashed in from 5 yards out.
On the ensuing possession, Pickett had the Steelers driving before he was pressured by multiple defenders and threw high to TE Pat Freiermuth. Rookie CB Ahmad "Sauce" Gardner closed fast and second-year nickel back Michael Carter II hauled in the Jets' third interception of the afternoon, the first of his career.
Then Wilson & Co. went to work, marching 65 yards in 10 plays before Hall's game-winner. Davis was huge late and finished with a team-leading 5 catches for 74 yards.
The game changed dramatically late in the first half. With the Jets up by 10-3 and looking for more, Wilson's five-plus-game INT streak came to a halt when Cameron Sutton intercepted him deep inside Steelers territory with 20 seconds on the game clock. Instead of the Jets pushing their lead back to double digits, Carl Lawson was called for a personal the foul on starter Mitch Trubisky and that set up a stadium record 59-yard field goal from Chris Boswell as time expired.
Then early in the third quarter, the home crowd came alive when Mike Tomlin inserted Pickett, a first-round pick from Pittsburgh, into the game. Despite his first pro pass being intercepted by Jets S Jordan Whitehead, also a Pittsburgh native who lined up for the Pitt Panthers, Minkah Fitzpatrick backed up the rookie with an INT of Wilson that he returned to the NYJ 4. Three plays later, Pickett was pushed into the end zone by his teammates on a 1-yard sneak and Pittsburgh went up top.
They made it 20 straight points at the beginning of the fourth quarter as Pickett stared down a Quinnen Williams pressure, sat tight and delivered on time to Freiermuth for an 18-yard gain on third-and-8. One play later, Pickett was in on a keeper and it was 20-10.
The Jets did a lot of things well defensively early as Quinnen Williams, Jermaine Johnson and Lawson all racked up first-half sacks and Joyner set the tone in the back end with a great PD. The starting safeties totaled 3 INTs with Joyner's early theft leading to a field goal and Whitehead, a Pittsburgh native, coming down with Pickett's first pro pass.
Although Wilson wasn't perfect and he was a bit rusty, he never flinched while completing 18 of 36 for 252 yards with 1 TD and 2 INTs.
See the best images from the Week 4 victory over the Steelers in Pittsburgh.
The Jets' opening TD was a franchise first as Wilson became the first Jets QB to be on the receiving end of a score. After two Wilson hook-ups to Elijah Moore for 48 yards helped get the Jets deep, OC Mike LaFleur went to his bag of tricks on a second-and-goal from the PIT 2. Wilson gave the ball to WR Garrett Wilson, who then in turn flipped a toss to Braxton Berrios who was working across the line of scrimmage and finally Berrios had an easy toss to the wide open QB.
Entering Week 4 with just 22 seconds of lead team, the Jets struck first against the Steelers. Joyner put the visitors in great position early, corralling a Trubisky rip that Dionate Johnson couldn't handle. Seven plays later, Greg Zeurlein connected on his sixth consecutive field goal attempt from 38 yards and the Green & White took a 3-0 lead.
With Wilson starting his first game of the 2022 season, the Jets made a lineup change along an offensive line that continues to seek continuity. Second-year OL Alijah Vera-Tucker, who started six games at LT for USC in 2020, became Wilson's blindside protector and the Jets moved Nate Herbig into AVT's sport at RG. Unfortunately for the Jets, the shuffling continued when rookie RT Max Mitchell was carted off the field in the second quarter and replaced by Conor McDermott.
And yet the Jets overcame everything to win again and push their road mark to 2-0. A fantastic finish yet again for a team who beat the Browns in Cleveland just two weeks ago despite trailing by 13 with 1:55 remaining.