These numbers, and Fitzpatrick's performance, are nothing special, but they were solid and, really, that's all the Jets really want from the quarterback position. If Fitzpatrick can consistently replicate this kind of production, that will be a major upgrade over what they've attained from the position in recent years.
Fitzpatrick completed over 60% of his passes and threw more touchdowns than interceptions in yesterday's game. No big deal; maybe the football equivalent of a "quality start". Then again it's something Geno Smith has achieved just once in each of his first two seasons.
Fitzpatrick did throw the one interception though and it was a stark reminder that while the Jets will be hoping he'll bring some much-needed consistency to the position, he's not going to be perfect. On that particular play, it seemed like he under-estimated Tashaun Gipson's athletic ability as Gipson back-pedalled and made a leaping grab in front of Brandon Marshall. Many made the same mistake last year, as Gipson was among the league leaders in picks.
Marshall, of course, bailed Fitzpatrick out by stripping the ball away and the play ended up being a net 28-yard gain - the second most successful offensive play of the game - to set up the first Jets' touchdown.
Fitzpatrick did have one play to better that one in more conventional fashion, hitting Chris Owusu in stride down the seam. He also made a nice throw downfield into a tight window to Eric Decker.
Fitzpatrick had two touchdown passes and would have had a third on a screen pass if not for a holding penalty. His first was a repeat of something we saw in preseason against the Giants, as Decker ran a post route and Fitzpatrick just had to wait for him to clear the safety so he could fit the throw in there perfectly at the back of the end zone. His second was something which - along with the quick slant to the same person - is going to be a big red zone weapon for the Jets this year, as he threw up a fade route jump ball for Marshall. As simple as Chris Paul getting in the lane and just lobbing it up near the rim for an easy throwdown.
The Jets could have a potent red zone offense this year and they scored four touchdowns on five trips without overusing the Marshall option. The only time they failed, they were pretty close, with Bilal Powell open on a post pattern from the slot but the pass was deflected away on another athletic play, this time by linebacker Barkevious Mingo.
On the whole, Fitzpatrick showed good pocket presence, took few risks and was mostly accurate. He also showed good patience on one late-developing screen and smartly threw at his receiver's feet on another that clearly wasn't going to work rather than try to force anything. His numbers were low mainly because he didn't need to throw the ball in the fourth quarter.
None of this passing production represents the most incredible thing Fitzpatrick did in yesterday's game though. How on earth did he come up with this ball?
I was impressed with the Jets' recovering fumbles on defense, but Fitzpatrick obviously decided it was so easy he could do it standing on his head. Or maybe he just wanted to show off his break-dancing skills.
Next up...an interesting battle upfront as the Jets' offensive line continues to gel...