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Jets ride GenoCoaster back into AFC playoff picture

Led by a revitalized Geno Smith, the New York Jets kept themselves in the AFC playoff hunt with a 37-27 win over the Oakland Raiders on Sunday at MetLife Stadium.

Here's what we learned:

  1. The GenoCoaster is back on the rails and operational. The Jets quarterback had his best game in two months, throwing for one touchdown and running for another. His 25-yard scoring hookup with wide receiver Jeremy Kerley was the Jets' first touchdown in nine quarters and Smith's first TD pass since Week 7. Smith was far from perfect: He missed an open Kellen Winslow in the end zone on New York's first possession and later threw a badly telegraphed interception, but Sunday counts as substantial progress. Coach Rex Ryan is unlikely to be asked about backup signal-caller Matt Simms this week.
  1. Raiders coach Dennis Allen hinted last week that he planned to get quarterback Terrelle Pryor in the gameplan. He did just that on the Raiders' third possession. Pryor made some plays in leading Oakland to three points before McGloin re-entered the game. McGloin's lights-out play in the second half should be enough to keep him on the field. We'll see if common sense comes into play for the Raiders.
  1. Safety Ed Reed made his first impact play in four weeks with the Jets, picking off a Matt McGloin pass deep in Raiders territory to set up a field goal by Nick Folk. Reed -- who recently defended his play -- also took a bad angle on Rod Streater's 48-yard touchdown reception, leading to a collision with Antonio Cromartie.
  1. The Jets entered Sunday as the league's top rush defense, but they certainly didn't look like it when fullback Marcel Reece galloped through the middle of the field on a 63-yard TD run. Reece, for the record, is the Raiders' fourth-string running back. The Raiders scored on every possession in the second half, showing off continued regression for Rex Ryan's defense.
  1. Playing with a healthy wide receiver group for the first time all year did wonders for the Jets' offense. Kerley and Santonio Holmes both made plays. It makes you wonder how much Geno Smith's progression was stunted by a lack of sufficient weapons around him.

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