Darrelle Revis makes the tackle against Nebraska
The Jets pass defense rebounded against the Buffalo Bills on Sunday. They battled back against poor field position throughout the game. They held Bills wide receiver Lee Evans, whom Jets head coach Eric Mangini referred to as "one of the most explosive receivers in the NFL," to four catches for 22-yards. And they came up with big plays when the team needed them the most.
"We're getting back to our identity of trying to make turnovers and be a turnover defense," said cornerback Darrelle Revis.
The defensive backs contributed to some exceptionally good numbers. The Bills managed 119 net passing yards, the second-lowest total under Mangini, and they didn't complete a pass longer than 14 yards, the first time that's happened since 2003 and the first time it happened in a win since 2001 at Carolina — the "Shrek Game."
As a result, the Jets' NFL ranking in pass defense rose from 31st to 29th.
And the DBs were responsible for all four of the Jets' turnovers, including fourth-quarter interceptions from Hank Poteat, Revis and Kerry Rhodes.
"There were ups and downs in the game for offense, defense and special teams," Revis said. "They had great field position. We tried to do a good job of just stopping them at key moments."
They made several key plays, none more timely than safety Abram Elam's strip-sack of QB J.P. Losman late in the fourth quarter, which Shaun Ellis ran back for a touchdown to give the Jets the 31-27 lead they never lost.
"It was a great comeback win for us," said Revis, who also called the win "sloppy."
"But like Coach said, we don't care how we win this game. This is a must-win for us, and that is what we came out to do. We came out to win the game, no matter what."
Mangini stressed the likelihood that a win over the Bills wouldn't come easy in the week leading up to the game.
"Since I've been here, they've all been pretty similar," Revis said. "It always comes right down to the end."
And while, before the season even started, many people in the media were asking if the Favre-led Jets were the new team to beat in the AFC East, Revis knew that his team was in store for a long season.
"At the beginning of the season we knew this was going to come down to the wire," he said. "We didn't know it was actually going to come about. Miami is a totally different team from last year. Everybody knows that the New England Patriots are going to contend. So right now it's up for grabs and it's for us to go out there and try to go grab it."
Although many fans are already looking at the Jets' chances of beating Miami in Week 17, Revis knows that the team must do something that it has yet to do this season before thinking about the Dolphins: win on the West Coast.
"Coach is going to bring that up on Wednesday," he said, when the team will begin to prepare for their battle in Seattle. "He's going to tell us that we have to win on the West Coast, which is true, but what we've got to put in our heads is we've got to be positive about the whole situation coming into this week.
"We know we've got to go out to the West Coast. We know what it brings and what it has. We've got to have positive minds to go out there and execute on Sunday. We've been 0-and-3. It hasn't been great for us, but we've just got to be positive."