Three weeks after Mike White threw the best game Jets fans had seen in over 20 years, he delivered one of the worst performances Jets fans had seen this year.
White was picked four times in the Jets’ lopsided 45-17 loss to the Buffalo Bills on Sunday at MetLife Stadium — sending the team to a 2-7 record, and crushing fans’ hopes of a resurgence from the ailing Gang Green.
The amateurish performance from the Jets also throws heaps of cold water on White, who has been under center for the team since their game against the New England Patriots four weeks ago, and who garnered significant attention after three sharp performances.
Sunday’s showing from White comes amid a quietly-brewing contest in the Jets locker room over the starting quarterback job. The team drafted college star Zach Wilson this year second overall in the NFL draft, but White took over the job last month after Wilson suffered a sprained right knee.
Against the Bills, White attempted 44 passes, while completing 24 for 251 total yards, with zero touchdowns and four interceptions.
The lackadaisical performance began early on for Gang Green, as the Bills’ fierce defense forced a three-and-out on the Jets’ first drive. The team from northern New York quickly capitalized on their early success, driving 58 yards into the Jets’ end-zone.
The next drive saw White throw his first of his interceptions, with Bills cornerback Taron Johnson picking off a pass intended for Jamison Crowder.
After dueling field goals and a series of punts, the Bills offense exploded at the end of the first half, with successive touchdowns — from Stefon Diggs, Isaiah McKenzie, Matt Breida, Zack Moss, and Devin Singletary — and took a commanding position against the Jets.
Meanwhile, the Jets offense looked to be unprepared for the devastating Bills defense, as the team fumbled the ball once, and White finished the day with four interceptions.
The scoreboard became so one-sided that Jets Head Coach Robert Saleh opted to send in backup Joe Flacco, the former-Ravens quarterback, to finish the game. The former Baltimore QB ended the Jets’ miserable day by throwing an ultimately meaningless touchdown to wideout Elijah Moore, and adding some life to the 45-17 final score.
All eyes are now on the Gang Green coaching staff, who have stuck by the injured Zach Wilson, despite fans’ growing attachment to White.
Using the second overall pick on a quarterback in the NFL draft usually means that the franchise will typically give the prospect room, and time, to grow. But even when not injured, Wilson hasn’t been the second-coming-of-Joe Montana that fans hoped.
But the team now saw Wilson’s potential replacement deliver a less-than-stellar performance against a division rival, and it wasn’t exactly pretty. So the controversy in MetLife stadium is sure to keep brewing, but any playoff hopes have surely left the building.
Sitting at 2-7, the Jets are in last place within the AFC East, and remain in the bottom four teams in the NFL. The team will be home next Sunday to host the Miami Dolphins, and then they’ll head to Houston to play the Texans on Nov. 28.
Meanwhile, the Bills advance to first place in the division with a 6-3 record, edging out the 6-4 New England Patriots. The Bills will face the Indianapolis Colts next Sunday in Buffalo.
The Bills and Jets will face again this year in Buffalo during the last game of the regular season on Jan. 9.
As for the Jets’ MetLife Stadium roommates, the New York Giants had their bye week Sunday. They’ll be back on the gridiron in Florida on Nov. 22 for a Monday Night Football matchup with the Super Bowl-champion Tampa Bay Buccaneers.