Preseason meant absolutely nothing - to the New York Jets.
The Jets' offense, which failed to score a touchdown the entire exhibition schedule, got into the end zone on its second drive of the season.
The Jets got good field position early thanks to two interceptions of Bills quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick. Nevertheless, maligned Jets starting quarterback Mark Sanchez looked sharp in driving his team 61 yards in eight plays.
Slot receiver Jeremy Kerley was the key man in the drive, catching a 21-yard pass down the sideline and grabbing a 10-yard TD strike on a fine throw from Sanchez to cap the march. Leodis McKelvin was in coverage on both Kerley gains.
Key plays: Fitzpatrick made a bad decision on his first pickoff to throw to the sideline after double-pumping. His second pickoff was into a tight window for David Nelson, and cornerback Kyle Wilson stepped in front of it.
Second guess: If you're going to gamble and throw late, don't throw it to the side of Jets All-Pro Darrelle Revis. He easily picked off a Fitzpatrick pass for Stevie Johnson. Fitzpatrick has confidence in his top receiver, but he needed to show more respect for the Jets' best defender.
The Bills added some negative history to their season opener in the second quarter by allowing their first punt return for a touchdown in 11 years.
New York's Jeremy Kerley ran 68 yards for a touchdown to break open the game, giving the Jets a 21-0 lead. It was a poor hang-time punt by Brian Moorman. Kerley had clear turf in front of him the final 40 yards. It was the first punt returned for a touchdown against the Bills since Tampa Bay's Karl Williams took one 73 yards for a score on Nov. 26, 2001. That return was the first in the 27-year history of the Bucs' franchise.
Kerley, a fifth-round pick last year, was an elite college return man for Texas Christian. He ranks 12th in NCAA history in punt return yards with 1,299 and 17th all-time in punt return average at 13.8.
Key gains: The Jets took a 14-0 lead on a 33-yard TD pass from Mark Sanchez to Stephen Hill. . C.J. Spiller pulled the Bills within 14 with a 56-yard run for a touchdown with 9:06 left in the half. New York added 25- and 39-yard field goals in the final two minutes.
Revis Island gets all the attention on New York's defense but the Jets have an ominous threat their fans like to call Al-Crotraz. Antonio Cromartie, the cornerback opposite Darrelle Revis, burned Ryan Fitzpatrick at the start of the third quarter.
Fitzpatrick threw a short pass to the left for slot receiver David Nelson, but Cromartie, covering the outside receiver to Nelson's left, broke off his man and stepped in front of the ball. He returned it 40 yards for a touchdown to put the Jets ahead, 34-7.
It was Cromartie's 22nd career pickoff, 20th best among active NFL players, and his third returned for a score. A seventh-year veteran, Cromartie is in his third season with the Jets. He had three interceptions in 2010 and four last season.
Key gains: Mark Sanchez hit Stephen Hill for 27 and 21 yards. The second was a touchdown to put the Jets up, 41-7. . The Bills got a 5-yard TD pass from Fitzpatrick to Scott Chandler.
Second guess: The Bills ran mostly standard four-man rushes at the Jets. They needed to mix things up a bit to get Sanchez off rhythm.
Bills quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick padded his statistics with 99 passing yards and two touchdown passes in the fourth quarter. Fitzpatrick no doubt would give them all away today if it meant an injury to David Nelson didn't occur early in the quarter.
Nelson went down in a heap near the Bills' sideline on a play that went to the other side of the field - a deep incompletion for Stevie Johnson. It's a knee injury that appears likely to end Nelson's season, which is a big blow to the Bills' offense. Fitzpatrick relies on Nelson a lot in the middle of the field. Nelson caught 61 passes last season.
Scoring strikes of 6 yards to Donald Jones and 29 yards to Johnson pulled the Bills within 41-28 with 5:58 left. But the ensuing onside kick was recovered by Tim Tebow and any chance of a miracle comeback was extinguished.
One happy Rex: "We know the records that we set in preseason that everyone pointed out," the Jets coach said of his team's exhibition season without a touchdown. "But the record that we set today was most points in team history in a season opener."