Pass Bounces Off Tebow’s Helmet: ‘I Guess I’ll Learn’
MIAMI (AP) — A pass caromed off Tim Tebow’s helmet, which is how things went much of the day for the New York Jets.
Then in overtime, the ball bounced their way.
First the Miami Dolphins missed a potential game-winning field-goal attempt, and then Jets kicker Nick Folk received a reprieve. After Folk’s blocked field-goal attempt was negated by a timeout, his retry was a successful 33-yarder with 6:04 left, and the Jets won 23-20 Sunday.
“We’ll take the win,” Jets coach Rex Ryan said. “We’re not going to give it back.”
New York quarterback Mark Sanchez was wildly erratic, and understudy Tebow again had little impact on the offense. The Jets did benefit from some Tebow trickery when he called a successful fake punt and ran 5 yards for a first down.
Tebow carried one other time and lost 5 yards. He still has yet to throw a pass this year, and a third-down throw from Sanchez bounced off Tebow’s helmet and fell incomplete.
“I was not expecting it that quick, but I guess I’ll learn,” Tebow said. “We got a win. That’s all that matters.”
New York improved to 2-1, and the Dolphins dropped to 1-2.
The Jets’ Darrelle Revis and Miami’s Reggie Bush left the game with left knee injuries. Revis was scheduled to undergo an MRI exam Monday.
Sanchez hit Santonio Holmes for a 38-yard gain to set up Folk’s winning kick. The first attempt was blocked by Randy Starks charging up the middle, but the officials whistled the play dead just as the ball was snapped because Dolphins coach Joe Philbin had called timeout.
“I thought it was the right call,” Philbin said. “I was planning all along to call timeout right before he kicked the ball. … Typically we’re going to ice the kicker.”
Folk said he and his Jets teammates heard the whistle when Philbin called timeout, and his blockers eased up.
“I’d rather kick it than sit there and not kick it,” Folk said. “I got another warmup kick.”
Philbin managed a sheepish grin as Folk lined up for his second attempt. The Jets kicker then made the winner.
On the previous possession, the Dolphins’ Dan Carpenter was wide left on a 48-yard attempt that would have given them the victory.
“I let the team down,” Carpenter said.
New Jets offensive coordinator Tony Sparano had trouble getting his unit moving much of the day, but in the end he called just enough right plays to beat the team that fired him as head coach last December.
“I think he’s happy to get the victory for the team, not just himself,” Ryan said.
Sanchez redeemed himself at the end of an erratic afternoon. His 7-yard touchdown pass to Jeremy Kerley with 3:01 left gave the Jets their first lead, 20-17.
But Sanchez twice missed open receivers for potential scores, made several wild throws and had a handful of passes dropped. He finished 21 for 45 for 306 yards and two interceptions.
“The defense and the other players picked me up when I didn’t have it,” Sanchez said. “It was an ugly win.”
Some Tebow trickery led to a field goal by New York. Exercising his option to call a fake, he took a short snap from punt formation on fourth-and-3 at the Jets 30 and ran for a first down. He was glad the call worked.
“Makes it a lot easier to go back to the sideline,” he said.
That jump-started a 16-play drive that ended with a 3-pointer.
Tebow also drew a big cheer from the crowd when the scoreboard “Kiss Cam” showed him next to teammate Clyde Gates on the sideline. A teammate encouraged them to kiss, but they declined.
NOTES: Jets WR Stephen Hill left the game with a right hamstring injury but afterward said he was fine. … The Dolphins were 10 for 19 converting third down. The Jets came into the game last in the NFL in third-down defense. … Former Dolphins Yeremiah Bell had seven tackles. … Miami’s Brandon Fields averaged 58.8 yards on four punts.
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