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                 === Smith outdoes Manuel, Jets best Bills ===
 
 East  Rutherford, NJ (Sports Network) - A spirited defensive effort was nearly
 outdone  by  a team-record  20 penalties, but  the New York  Jets won a battle
 between  rookie quarterbacks after Geno Smith's third touchdown of the day was
 enough to down EJ Manuel and the Buffalo Bills, 27-20.
 
 Smith,  who was passed on by the Bills in this past April's NFL Draft in favor
 of  Manuel, put forth his best performance as a pro, and needed to in order to
 overcome 163 team penalty yards. He threw for two touchdowns and added another
 on  the ground, while  completing 16-of-29 throws for 331 yards with a pair of
 interceptions.
 
 The  Jets' (2-1)  receiving corps stepped up against a depleted secondary that
 Smith  was routinely  picking apart.  Santonio  Holmes and  Stephen Hill  each
 caught  long touchdown  passes,  with  Holmes' 69-yard  score  with 9:23  left
 proving  to be the difference. He ended with five catches for 154 yards, while
 Hill accumulated 108 yards on three receptions.
 
 "A  big division win," said Jets coach Rex Ryan. "The thing that makes me most
 happy is that I know this team will get better."
 
 Bilal  Powell had  a breakout game to pace New York's rushing attack, totaling
 149  yards on 27 carries. Buffalo's CJ Spiller wasn't as fortunate, bottled up
 for nine yards on 10 carries before leaving with a knee injury.
 
 Manuel's  life was made miserable most of the day, as the Jets' defense sacked
 the  rookie  signal-caller eight times.  He completed just 19-of-42 passes for
 243  yards and a touchdown, and the Bills (1-2) were forced to settle for four
 Dan Carpenter field goals on the day.
 
 "When  they're bringing  eight  people at  you it  gets  tough," said  Manuel.
 "Moving forward we'll be more prepared for it."
 
 Holmes'  first touchdown of the season came just two plays after the Bills had
 drawn  even. Smith  found the receiver sprinting down the sideline, and Holmes
 made  a  one-handed snag around corner  Justin Rogers before taking it all the
 way to the end zone, erasing New York's most miserable defensive effort of the
 day.
 
 On  the Bills'  drive that tied the  game at 20-20, New York's Kyle Wilson was
 flagged  for  a penalty  on four  consecutive plays, two  of which occurred on
 third  downs. Coach  Ryan finally lifted the beleaguered corner, and two plays
 later,  Manuel  hooked up with  Scott Chandler for  a 33-yard score. The Bills
 then made good on the two-point conversion, with Stevie Johnson hauling in the
 reception to tie the score with 10:39 remaining.
 
 However,  Buffalo was  unable to muster another score after falling behind. It
 finished the game a brutal 4-for-18 on third down conversions.
 
 The  Jets  went ahead, 20-6,  on their first touch  of the third. Holmes broke
 away  to haul in a 40-yard pass from Smith on 3rd-and-12, then Jeff Cumberland
 made an 18-yard catch to set up Nick Folk's 34-yard field goal.
 
 Manuel  scrambled for 19 yards on the Bills' ensuing possession, and a 24-yard
 pass  interference penalty  on Wilson moved them deep into New York territory.
 Carpenter's 43-yard kick cut the deficit to 11.
 
 Smith's  second  interception, this  one by Bills  linebacker Kiko Alonso, put
 Buffalo  on New  York's 13-yard line. However, the Jets defense made the stand
 and the Bills were again forced to settle for three on Carpenter's 26-yarder.
 
 In  the first, Smith  directed the Jets down the field on their initial drive,
 highlighting  the 12-play  series with a 45-yard strike to Hill before scoring
 on an 8-yard scramble that gave New York a 7-0 lead.
 
 The  Bills  punted on their first  two possessions, but Fred Jackson ended the
 first  quarter with  a bang, bouncing to  the outside for a 59-yard rush. Jets
 cornerback  Antonio  Cromartie chased  him down  to save  a touchdown, and the
 Bills ended up settling for Carpenter's 37-yard kick.
 
 Smith tried going deep on the first play of New York's ensuing possession, but
 former  Jets  safety Jim Leonhard  picked off his  intended pass for Holmes. A
 pair of rushes by Jackson put the Bills on the Jets' 10, but the drive stalled
 and Carpenter booted a 23-yarder through to make it 7-6.
 
 Smith  rebounded after  the interception,  completing a  pair of  short throws
 before  heaving  the  ball down  field  to  a  streaking  Hill for  a  51-yard
 touchdown.
 
 New  York  then made a  big defensive stand  on the Bills' ensuing possession,
 with  rookie defensive tackle Sheldon Richardson stuffing Jackson for a 1-yard
 loss  on  3rd-and-1. The  Bills decided  to go for  it from  the Jets' 33, but
 Demario Davis broke the line to sack Manuel for a turnover on downs.
 
 The  Jets  got the  ball back  with 43  seconds left  in the  half, and a pass
 interference  penalty  helped the  Jets cross midfield.  Folk kicked a 47-yard
 field goal through to put New York up 17-6 at the break.
 
 
                                   Game Notes
 
 Ryan  improved to 7-2  against the Bills as coach of the Jets ... Buffalo lost
 cornerback  Leodis McKelvin to  a leg injury in the first quarter ... New York
 outgained Buffalo, 513-328 ... The Jets possessed the ball for 34:13.
 
 
 
 
 09/22 20:47:19 ET