New York Jets defensive tackle Quinnen Williams (95) and linebacker Quincy Williams (56) walk off the field after an NFL football game against the Green Bay Packers, Sunday, Oct. 16, 2022, in Green Bay, Wis. (AP Photo/Mike Roemer)

Buffalo Bills Fall in Monday Night Football Opener to the New York Jets

The New York Jets defeated the Buffalo Bills Monday night in overtime, 22-16. The victory came thanks to a punt return touchdown from Xavier Gipson. Jets quarterback Aaron Rodgers went down early and is believed to have suffered a torn Achilles.

The Game

The Jets received the first-half kick, but it was only four plays before Bills’ pass rusher Leonard Floyd sacked Rodgers. That’s where he suffered the believed-to-be Achilles tear. He was carted off the sideline and had X-rays done before being officially ruled out. Rodgers will have an MRI on Tuesday to confirm the injury. Zach Wilson took over and was announced to be the starting quarterback for the rest of the season.

The Bills drew first blood, starting the game off with a 40-yard field goal from Tyler Bass. They took a 3-0 lead with 3:09 to go in the first quarter. New York evened things later in the second quarter with a 26-yard field goal from Greg Zuerlein.

Stefon Diggs scored the first touchdown on a 3-yard pass from Josh Allen with 4:51 to go in the half, giving Buffalo a 10-3 lead. Buffalo kicked a 34-yard field goal with 20 seconds left in the first half to take a 13-3 lead into halftime.

The Jets took over in the second half, holding the Bills to only 3 points and scoring 13 of their own. Zach Wilson threw a pass late to receiver Garrett Wilson, who tipped it away from a defender to himself and caught it, scoring the game-tying touchdown.

The Jets scored another field goal and the game went to overtime after the Bills drove downfield with 1:48 left in the game to score another field goal. Overtime didn’t last long with Buffalo receiving, going three-and-out, and punting. That’s where rookie Xavier Gipson returned it 65 yards for the walk-off touchdown. That is just the third punt return touchdown in overtime in NFL history.

The Stats

The Jets’ offense was led by running back Breece Hall, who returned for the first time since his torn ACL injury in 2022. He had ten carries for 127 yards and added 20 yards on one reception. Defensively, safety Jordan Whitehead snagged three interceptions off of Allen and played a key role in the comeback.

The Bills, on the other hand, were led offensively by Stefon Diggs, who had 10 receptions for 102 yards and a touchdown. Quarterback Josh Allen had a disappointing night, completing 29 of 41 passes for 236 yards, a touchdown and 3 interceptions. He also took five sacks. On defense, linebacker Matt Milano grabbed one interception, and the unit as a whole forced 3 sacks.

Takeaways

New York starts the season 1-0 and is tied with the Miami Dolphins for first place in the AFC East. The Bills, meanwhile, drop to 0-1 and are tied with the New England Patriots for last.

The Jets travel to Dallas next week to face the Cowboys, while Buffalo heads home to play the Las Vegas Raiders.

Both teams face off again in Buffalo in week 11.

About Josiah Caswell

Class of 2026 at the University of Florida. Majoring in Journalism on the sports & media track.

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