The New York Jets extended their winning streak to four games with a 29-20 win against the Minnesota Vikings, a victory sealed when Brett Favre threw an interception that was returned for a touchdown.
Favre threw three second-half touchdown passes to rally the Vikings, who trailed 12-0 midway through the third quarter last night at New Meadowlands Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey.
The Vikings were down 22-20 when Favre got the ball back with 1:48 left. On third down, Jets cornerback Dwight Lowery stepped in front of Favre’s short pass intended for Visanthe Shiancoe and returned it 26 yards for the clinching score.
“With Brett on the field, they always have a chance,” Jets quarterback Mark Sanchez said. “As a competitor you want to be on the field, but I was cheering our defense on. We knew they’d make a play and they sure did.”
The Jets improved to 4-1 on a record-setting night for Favre, who threw his 500th career touchdown pass during the third quarter -- a 37-yarder to Randy Moss. Favre, who was held to 31 passing yards in the first 30 minutes, also threw two second-half touchdown passes to Percy Harvin.
Favre eclipsed 70,000 career passing yards and set a National Football League record with his 162nd fumble, a turnover that led to one of five field goals by the Jets’ Nick Folk. Favre had three turnovers as the Vikings fell to 1-3.
‘Have to Do Better’
“I gave it my all and it wasn’t good enough,” Favre, who is bothered by tendinitis in his throwing arm, said during a news conference. “I have to do better. I missed some throws there at the end.”
Moss, acquired from the New England Patriots last week, had four catches for 81 yards in his return to the Vikings. He spent his first seven NFL seasons in Minnesota.
The Jets didn’t have any turnovers in rainy conditions at the Meadowlands, where the start of the game was delayed about 45 minutes because of a storm that brought lightning and heavy rain. It’s the fourth straight game without a turnover for the Jets, whose 4-1 record is tied for the best in the NFL.
“We took care of the ball and won it,” Sanchez said.
The Jets’ lone touchdown came on a 23-yard run by Shonn Green with 4:30 remaining that put the home team up 22-13.
Favre pulled the Vikings within two points just 1:21 later, hooking up with Harvin for an 11-yard touchdown pass. It was the third touchdown in four possessions for Minnesota, which had been held to 51 yards in the first half. On the next drive, Favre misfired on a pass to a wide-open Harvin and then was intercepted by Lowery.
“This was a typical Jet win -- resilient and a team effort all the way against an excellent football team,” Jets coach Rex Ryan said during a news conference. “I’m proud of the way our guys competed to the end.”