The Jets lost starting quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick to a thumb injury on the first drive of the game when he was tackled after scrambling for 12 yards. Jets coach Todd Bowles said he has torn ligaments in his left thumb and will have an MRI tomorrow.
That led to Geno Smith making his season debut. The team’s starter entering the year, he suffered a broken jaw in the preseason when he was punched by former teammate IK Enemkpali. Smith was briefly knocked out of the game as well in the final minute after taking a big hit from Ray-Ray Armstrong, which forced Fitzpatrick to return for two plays of emergency duty.
The Raiders said the quarterback shifting didn’t affect them.
“They’re both similar,” defensive end Khalil Mack said. “We knew Fitzpatrick probably had a little bit of a stronger arm, but we knew we needed to cover the same way and cover (Brandon Marshall).”
Marshall had nine catches for 108 yards, but that came on 18 targets. Smith threw for 265 yards and two touchdowns and one interception.
Both of Smith’s touchdowns came after the Raiders took a 28-3 lead after the first drive of the third quarter. New York pulled within 14 points with 8:37 to play and got the ball three more times, but the Raiders showed a better finishing touch than last week to maintain the comfortable lead.
“I think we did a really good job finishing against a really good football team,” coach Jack Del Rio said.”
Mack appreciated the immediate second chance to close outa game after taking a big lead.
“We wanted to learn from our mistakes last week,” Mack said. “That was the focal point throughout the whole defense. We can’t let them get back in this game.”