Bills’ Josh Allen has one of his worst days in the NFL in a loss to the Rodgers-less Jets
EAST RUTHEERFORD, N.J. (AP) — After Aaron Rodgers went down with an Achilles tendon injury early in his debut with the New York Jets, the Buffalo Bills seemingly had an easy path to a season-opening win at MetLife Stadium.
They didn’t count on Pro Bowl quarterback Josh Allen messing things up with one of his worst games in the NFL, turning the ball over four times.
Allen threw three interceptions and lost a fumble late in the fourth quarter of what became a 22-16 overtime loss. The Jets walked it off thanks to a 65-yard punt return by rookie Xavier Gipson.
“We prepared so hard, the effort was there. Our guys played so hard. Defense gave us opportunities,” Allen said. “They played a heck of a game. It sucks when you feel like you are the reason and I am the reason we lost tonight.”
Jets safety Jordan Whitehead made all the picks, including two ill-advised deep passes and another along the sideline that set up Garrett Wilson’s spectacular, juggling touchdown with just under five minutes left in regulation that tied the game at 13.
Allen said for some unexplained reason he forced passes.
“Mindset-wise, just trust in what I see, sticking with it and not trying to force anything,” said Allen, who was 29 of 41 for 236 yards and a touchdown. “It’s a good defense we’re playing but we can’t play two guys. You can’t play them and us. I played us tonight.”
After the Jets tied the game, Allen fumbled on the ensuing possession to set up a go-ahead field goal by Greg Zuerlein with less than two minutes to play.
“It just kind of slipped through my hands,” Allen said. “We had a motion. I went to grab it and was just trying to get yards. Just got hit on multiple sides.”
Allen moved the Bills 43 yards in nine plays and Buffalo forced overtime when Tyler Bass converted a 50-yard field goal that deflected off the left upright and through with 2 seconds to play.
“I hurt our team tonight,” Allen said. “I cost our team tonight and it feels eerily similar to last year. I hate that it’s the same.”
Allen is now 0-5 in overtime games, including two setbacks in the playoffs.
Tight end Dawson Knox said one person is never to blame in football.
“That’s what great leaders do, take it upon themselves,” Knox said. “He knows there are things we all got to work on. It’s never just on him but that’s the nature of this business. Big wins, he’ll get the credit. Big losses, he’ll take the credit also.”
Buffalo coach Sean McDermott said his team needed to be smarter with a 13-3 halftime lead and Zach Wilson playing in place of Rodgers after the opening series.
“With all due respect to Zach, they are two different quarterbacks, just from experience alone,” McDermott said. “And that’s when you’re up 13-3 at halftime and you’re saying take care of the football, be smart. And we weren’t smart. When you shoot yourself in the foot, it’s hard to win games.”
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