Jets 31

(5-5, 3-2 away)

Lions 14

(3-7, 3-2 home)

Coverage: CBS

4:15 PM ET, November 17, 2002


1 2 3 4 T
NYJ 7 6 8 1031
DET 0 7 7 014

Jets get back to elusive .500 mark

DETROIT (AP) -- The New York Jets are beginning to emerge from the huge hole they dug for themselves.

Allen's Analysis
Eric Allen
Question on the Jets: Other than Pennington's play, how have they turned their season around?
The defense has gotten better. The linebackers have improved, and CB Ray Mickens has made some big plays in recent weeks. Plus, the play-calling has utilized the Jets' receivers better. They're making more plays downfield. When you put it all together, the Jets are playing as forecast before the season began.

Question on the Lions: What are some of the major pieces they need to become a more consistent team?
The Lions need to build around their rookie quarterback, Joey Harrington. He has impressed with his poise and ability this season. It's tough to tell right now exactly what their needs will be come draft time, but the Lions need to evaluate their personnel as the season moves on. As they do that, they'll come up with a plan for the draft and potential free-agent acquisitions.

Eric Allen played cornerback for 14 NFL seasons with the Eagles, Saints and Raiders.

Chad Pennington threw a career-high four touchdowns -- two to Wayne Chrebet -- as the Jets scored the last 18 points to beat the Detroit Lions 31-14 Sunday.

The Jets (5-5) have won three straight and four of five to save their season after a 1-4 start.

"The big thing about a month ago was to get back to .500 as soon as possible, and hopefully we would have enough games left to make a run for the playoffs,'' Chrebet said. "We did it pretty quickly. This is a big win for us. Everybody thought this was a trap game coming in here against a team with a losing record.''

The Lions (3-7) had won three in a row at Ford Field and four straight against the Jets.

Since 1997, the Jets have won an NFL-best 27 games on the road and are 9-3 as visitors under coach Herman Edwards, who does not want his team to be content with its turnaround.

"We are really fortunate and we know that,'' Edwards said. "We dug ourselves a deep, deep hole, and we can't make the mistake of thinking we are out of it. We've given ourselves a chance, but it doesn't matter unless we keep playing like this.''

New York led 13-0 after its first two possessions but fell behind 14-13 midway through the third quarter after Joey Harrington threw TD passes of 37 and 7 yards to Bill Schroeder.

The Jets went ahead for good late in the third quarter on Pennington's second TD pass to Chrebet, on third down from the 4. The play capped a 66-yard, 12-play drive after New York gained just 45 yards on its previous four possessions.

Laveranues Coles, completely uncovered, caught the 2-point conversion to give New York a 21-14 lead.

"It was crucial for our offense to take control of the game and to really put the stamp on it,'' Pennington said.

John Hall's 22-yard kick on the Jets' next possession made it 24-14, and a 1-yard TD pass to Anthony Becht made it a blowout.

"Defensively, we didn't play good,'' said Detroit's Todd Lyght, who had an interception. "First down, third down, it didn't matter. We were inconsistent, and we weren't able to get off the field.''

The Lions lost seven yards -- including penalties -- on three possessions after taking the lead.

The Jets have given up just 13.6 points a game over their last five.

Pennington, a third-year pro, outshined rookie Harrington in a duel of promising young quarterbacks.

Pennington was 21-of-26 for 229 yards with one interception. Harrington was 15-of-30 for 171 yards with two TDs and one interception.

"He struggled a little bit,'' Detroit coach Marty Mornhinweg said.

Coles caught seven passes for 114 yards and Curtis Martin ran for 112 yards on 22 carries.

James Stewart ran for 93 yards -- but just 8 in the second half -- against the Jets after they had limited running backs to 60 yards or less in the previous four games. Schroeder caught three passes for 57 yards and two TDs after being sharply criticized for his play.

Detroit drove to the Jets 4 on the opening possession, but linebacker Marvin Jones ended the drive with a diving interception in the end zone.

Pennington then directed a 12-play, 80-yard drive over 6:16 that ended with a 10-yard TD pass to Santana Moss in the back corner of the end zone.

On the Jets' next possession, Pennington made a 15-yard TD pass to Chrebet. James Hall blocked the extra point.

Detroit cut its deficit to 13-7 on the ensuing possession.

Harrington found Schroeder open on a crossing route and he used his speed to run across the field untouched for a 37-yard TD early in the second quarter.

The Lions took advantage of a big break to take a 14-13 lead in the third quarter.

Linebacker James Darling was flagged for roughing the passer, which negated an interception and gave the Lions a first down. Harrington connected with Schroeder in the end zone on third-and-goal from the 7.

Game notes

Detroit receiver Az-Zahir Hakim will miss the rest of the season after dislocating and fracturing his left hip. Defensive end Robert Porcher left the game with a hyperextended right knee, and defensive tackle Luther Elliss sprained an ankle. ... Chrebet had his first two-TD game since Oct. 23, 2000, against Miami and Schroeder had his first two-TD game since Oct. 1, 2000, when he was with Green Bay.

Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press


Scoring Summary

Drive info: 6 plays, 78 yds, 2:08
Drive info: 6 plays, 78 yds, 2:08
nyjFG11:20John Hall 10 yd Field Goal
Drive info: 7 plays, 43 yds, 3:25
Drive info: 7 plays, 77 yds, 14:00
Drive info: 8 plays, 80 yds, 3:48
Drive info: 10 plays, 77 yds, 6:44
Drive info: 8 plays, 80 yds, 3:48
Drive info: 10 plays, 77 yds, 6:44
Drive info: 12 plays, 66 yds, 5:43
nyjTD6:30Touchdown(Chad Pennington pass to Laveranues Coles for 2pt conversion)
Drive info: 12 plays, 80 yds, 5:08
Drive info: 12 plays, 80 yds, 5:08