Rams spoil Petty's first NFL start in 9-6 win over Jets
By DENNIS WASZAK Jr.
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. (AP) Alec Ogletree saw the football zipping his way and knew he needed to get his hands on it.
The Los Angeles linebacker intercepted Bryce Petty with just under two minutes left, lifting the Rams to a 9-6 victory over the New York Jets in a snoozer Sunday.
Petty made his first NFL start in place of an injured Ryan Fitzpatrick, but couldn't get much going against the Rams defense.
After getting the ball with 2:55 remaining and down by three, Petty tried to lead the Jets (3-7) down the field. But on second-and-7 from the 42, Petty's pass to Quincy Enunwa was picked off by Ogletree, who took it out of the receiver's hands and Enunwa then tried to wrestle it away from the linebacker to no avail.
"I had that area of zone and I was playing the receiver," Ogletree said. "I saw him throw the ball. We kind of tied up and I was able to rip it out from him and make the play."
Greg Zuerlein kicked three field goals, including a go-ahead 34-yarder with 6:52 left, helping the Rams (4-5) snap a four-game losing streak and avoid their first five-game skid since Weeks 9-13 last season.
"We had to fight and scrap all the way to the end," Ogletree said. "That's what it takes to win and I was right there to make the play. We really couldn't get on the plane without winning here."
The game featured 15 punts - eight by the Jets and seven by the Rams - as neither offense were the models of efficiency or excitement. New York finished with 296 yards of total offense, while the Rams had 280.
Petty, a fourth-round draft pick out of Baylor last year, went 19 of 32 for 163 yards with a touchdown and the loss-sealing interception.
"I'm not going to let this define my career," Petty said. "I'm not going to let this define me."
Fitzpatrick was listed as questionable with a sprained left knee , suffered last weekend at Miami. Coach Todd Bowles said throughout the week that Fitzpatrick would remain the starter for Sunday's game - as long as he was healthy enough to play.
After the game, Bowles said Fitzpatrick wasn't "completely healthy." The two split first-team snaps during practice all week.
Fitzpatrick was active for the game and served as Petty's backup, while rookie Christian Hackenberg was inactive. Bowles would not commit to who his starter would be in the Jets' next game against New England in two weeks.
While Rams fans have been clamoring for No. 1 overall pick Jared Goff to play, Case Keenum went a ho-hum 17 of 30 for 165 yards, but had no turnovers after throwing eight interceptions in his previous four games.
"No, I'm not going into the quarterback situation," coach Jeff Fisher said. "As I said, I don't believe it's the quarterback play. Collectively, we're just making mistakes here and there."
Petty drove the Jets 99 yards on the team's second possession, finishing with his first NFL TD pass with a little razzle-dazzle on a toss to Brandon Marshall, who flipped it to Bilal Powell for a 4-yard score.
Nick Folk was wide left on the extra point, his second miss of the season, leaving New York with a 6-3 lead early in the second quarter.
Zuerlein tied it at 6 with 20 seconds left in the third quarter with a 38-yard field goal.
"I thought Case did a nice job," Fisher said. "We didn't get the ball in the end zone, but he scrambled and picked up some key first downs and kept drives alive. That's what you have to do against a defense like this."
Petty misfired on a long pass on third-and-14 from the Rams 32 that could've been an easy touchdown in the closing minute of the first half, slightly overthrowing Anderson, who was wide open but had to reach high as the ball tipped off his hand.
GURLEY STILL GROUNDED
Todd Gurley, last season's Offensive Rookie of Year, still has yet to run for 100 yards in a game this season after rushing for 125 or more five times last season. He finished with 64 yards on 21 carries. Gurley's longest run of the season, 21 yards in the fourth quarter, was wiped out by Greg Robinson's holding penalty.
With the Rams pinned at their 17 on fourth-and-1 early in the fourth quarter, Johnny Hekker blasted a 78-yard punt that had returner Jalin Marshall fielding as if he were catching a pass. After a 10-yard return by Marshall, the Jets had the ball at their 15 - and went three-and-out. It was the fourth-longest punt in franchise history.
Rams: vs. Miami next Sunday.
Jets: bye week. Next game vs. New England, Nov. 27.
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Updated November 13, 2016