EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. (AP) -- When Justin Miller started his
high-flying act down the sideline, Buffalo looked on in disgust.
Miller scooted past every Bills player, speeding for a 95-yard
kickoff return for a touchdown with 5:58 remaining to lift the Jets
to a 30-26 victory Sunday. Ty Law sealed the win with his third
interception of the game, helping New York (4-12) end the season
with some dignity.
"We've been through a horrific season," Jets coach Herman
Edwards said. "It's not fun for the players, it's not fun for the
organization. We just kept fighting. That's something to say about
those men in that locker room."
The loss, however, was most undignified for the Bills (5-11),
who came into the game yielding 18.6 yards per kickoff return --
tops in the NFL. It was the first time they gave up a kickoff
return for a score since allowing two in an overtime loss to the
Jets to open the 2002 season.
"I never imagined we'd lose the game on a touchdown, the way
our unit had been playing," linebacker Mario Haggan said. "We
came in with high hopes but to give it up like that really hurts.
Until we kick it off in 2006, this will be in the back of our
Both organizations are probably happy the season is over. The
injury-ravaged Jets must deal with a new round of questions on the
status of Edwards, who affirmed his commitment to the team again
Sunday despite speculation linking him to Kansas City.
Now that Chiefs coach Dick Vermeil has decided to retire, that
link will probably keep gaining strength. Edwards, who makes about
$2 million a year, might try to use the situation to lobby for a
contract extension because he needs time to clean up the team.
As for Buffalo, coach Mike Mularkey, the subject of much
criticism this season, is expected to stay but general manager Tom
Donahoe could be out. Mularkey said he wasn't concerned with his
job security. Owner Ralph Wilson said he planned to meet with
Mularkey in the next few days.
"I'm going to talk to Mike and see what he has to say and see
what he thinks he needs," Wilson said. "But there are going to be
some changes. What's that old song? 'There are going to be some
changes made?' Frankly I forget the words beyond there are going to
be some changes made."
Law also could be out of New York, and if he played his last
game with the Jets, he went out strong. His three interceptions
brought his season total to 10, setting a career high and a record
for most interceptions by a Jets cornerback. He also moved into
third on the team's all-time single-season list.
Though Law took a hit to the head in the third quarter and was
woozy, he insisted on returning to the game after sitting out a few
series. The team's lone Pro Bowl selection, Law is expected to
become a free agent in the offseason because he is due $11 million
to trigger the remainder of his contract. The 11-year veteran is
proud he was able to return from a broken right foot to have one of
his most productive seasons.
"There was a lot of doubt if I'd be able to come back," Law
said. "If there's a chance, I'd love to play with these guys
again. We all know this is a business, it's something you can't
After Buffalo went ahead 26-23 on Rian Lindell's 36-yard field
goal, Miller took the ensuing kickoff and tiptoed down the
sideline, finally providing the special teams score the Jets lacked
all season. Buffalo had one final shot with 47 seconds left, but
Law intercepted Kelly Holcomb's deep heave.
Miller said all he saw was "green and daylight. I saw all my
teammates blocking and laying it on the line ... so it was my goal
to get into the end zone."
Lindell had four field goals in all (21, 24, 52, 36), and
Holcomb was 23-of-37 for 184 yards, two touchdowns and four
Most of the first-half highlights came from the Jets defense,
which got three interceptions. Law had two, and Mark Brown had the
other, when the football landed into his arms after it bounced off
fullback Daimon Shelton's shoes. Brown raced 33 yards for a
touchdown to put the Jets ahead 17-6 early in the second quarter.
Though Buffalo came back, the Jets were able to hold on to end
the season on a positive note.
"I don't want to be standing here next year talking about the
character of the team," linebacker Jonathan Vilma said. "I want
to be talking about winning and the playoffs."
Jets DE John Abraham had a sack, giving him 10.5 sacks this
season, his highest total since 13 in 2001. ... Buffalo had four
sacks, including two from DT Sam Adams. ... Willis McGahee had 22
carries for 113 yards and went over 100 yards for the first time in
eight games. ... Mike Nugent added three field goals (49, 25, 34)
for the Jets.
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