Joe Flacco, New York Jets
Joe Flacco, New York Jets, Getty Images

A miracle comeback allowed the Jets to escape from Cleveland with a major victory

Two of the NFL’s more star-crossed franchises put up an entertaining effort on Sunday at First Energy Stadium, but it was the visiting New York Jets that came out clean on the other side against the Clevland Browns.

Nick Chubb put up 113 yards of offense on 20 touches, taking three of those in for scores, but the Browns (1-1) lost a two-touchdown lead with just over two minutes remaining. They allowed the Jets (1-1) to escape with a 31-30 victory in Week 2 action.

Rookies Breece Hall and Garrett Wilson scored their first career touchdowns for the Jets, both of them the recipients of Joe Flacco‘s scoring tosses. Wilson, a former Ohio State star, granted the finishing touch, a 15-yard score with 22 seconds remaining in regulation.

Seeds of a Browns blowout were planted early, as Clevland followed up the Jets’ opening three-and-out with a 90-yard drive capped off by a four-yard score for Chubb. Cleveland faced only a single third down on that opening trek, which took 14 plays and 8:37 to pull off.

After some early success on their second drive, the Jets appeared to surrender in the form of a punt from their own 46, but that wound up yielding momentum-changing trickery: Braden Mann hooked up with Jeff Smith on a fake, picking up 17 yards that led to not only a long run for Breece Hall but also a touchdown grab for Garrett Wilson, the final play coming on a two-yard toss from Flacco on third-and-goal.

Amari Cooper and Jadeveon Clowney each put momentum back on Cleveland’s side: Cooper earned a six-yard touchdown reception from Jacoby Brissett, while Clowney forced and recovered a Flacco fumble in the red zone on the ensuing drive.

New York, however, was able to put momentum back in their corner before the halftime horn via another first-time touchdown: Flacco found Hall for a 10-yard score, creating a 14-14 equalizer.

The teams exchanged field goals in the second half, with Greg Zuerlein booting a 57-yarder for the Jets early in the fourth. Chubb broke through on the very next possession, scoring on a seven-yard tally that put the Browns back ahead.

Despite generating some positive offensive momentum, the Jets were forced into consecutive three-and-outs on their last two drives, the latter of which would’ve allowed the Browns possession long enough to run out the clock with runs from Chubb and Kareem Hunt. They instead opted to have Chubb put in his third score of the day, capping off the afternoon’s scoring. The extra point, however, was missed, setting up an absolute miracle.

Gang Green had one more big play or two left in them, as Flacco found Corey Davis for an instant, 66-yard score before the team successfully recovered Braden Mann’s onside kick. Flacco took the Jets the rest of the way, finding Wilson for the miracle score and igniting a green celebration like no other.

A lingering 22 seconds could’ve afforded some Jets-like antics to close things out, but Ashtyn Davis stifled the Browns for good with an interception.

The Jets return to East Rutherford next weekend, battling the defending AFC champion Cincinnati Bengals at MetLife Stadium on Sunday (1 p.m. ET, CBS).

Geoff Magliocchetti is on Twitter @GeoffJMags

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Geoff Magliocchetti is a veteran football writer with years of credentialed experience with the Jets and Giants. Email:
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1 year ago

Michael, Nania: How You Feeling’!!! Jets Optimist, Robert 725, How you feeling’!!!

Edward Kirby
Edward Kirby
1 year ago
Reply to  BigJetsFan1

I’m thinking the latter must be extended over this.

1 year ago

Clemons on a clean hit to brisset that rattled him. Max Mitchell jumping on another Tyler Conklin fumble. Greg the leg. Braden “the” mann, man. So many contributors today. Team win. And we had to beat the browns and the refs. Great job. Keep it going.

Peter Buell
Peter Buell
1 year ago
Reply to  Jimjets

Jim, I had to run out for what I thought would be 30 minutes instead of an hour, so I watched alot of the game on triple fast forward.
Even with that and going back occasionally it seemed like the Jets were getting jobbed. Seems like a thing where the teams that are supposed to be bad have the 50/50 calls go against them about 80% of the time.
I’m a Mets fan and see Lindor get calls at the plate his teammates don’t. It’s like once you’ve built up a cache you get the benefits…I could understand it more if it wasn’t Cleveland but I think they want them to be the next attraction once Watson comes back.

1 year ago

This is NOT the SOJ! We won! What a game!! What a fight! What a day!!!