ATLANTA – Nick Folk kicked a 43-yard field goal on the final play of the game and the New York Jets handed struggling Atlanta its third straight loss, beating the Falcons 30-28 on Monday night.
The Falcons rallied from a 27-14 deficit in the fourth quarter, going ahead on Matt Ryan’s 3-yard touchdown pass to Levine Toilolo with 1:54 remaining.
But rookie Geno Smith, who threw three touchdown passes, guided the Jets (3-2) on the winning drive. He completed four straight passes and ran for an 8-yard gain before the Jets sent Folk on for the last play.
Jacquizz Rodgers scored on a pair of touchdown runs, and Ryan also threw a scoring pass to Jason Snelling.
But the Falcons (1-4) are now mired in their longest losing streak since 2007.
The Jets made a dramatic goal-line stand in the final seconds of the first half, and then forced a turnover to set up Folk’s 36-yard field goal late in the third quarter.
Defensive end Muhammad Wilkerson stripped the ball from Ryan on a pass rush. Leger Douzable recovered for the Jets at the Atlanta 27. Folk then connected for his second field goal to increase New York’s lead.
Rodgers scored on a 4-yard run midway through the third quarter for Atlanta.
A hot first half for Smith put the Falcons in a 17-7 hole at the break.
Smith, who shared the NFL lead with 11 turnovers through four weeks, put together a strong start and finished 16 of 20 for 199 yards.
With Atlanta leading 7-3 early in the second, Smith threw a 20-yard touchdown pass to Jeff Cumberland over cornerback Asante Samuel.
Sheldon Richardson’s third-down sack of Ryan set up New York’s second touchdown drive of the quarter. Cumberland again beat Samuel for a 47-yard reception to the Falcons 16. On the next play, Smith passed to Jeremy Kerley for the score.
The Falcons were stopped on two plays from the Jets’ 1 as the half ended. On fourth-and-1, Ryan’s pass for Gonzalez was incomplete, but linebacker Demario Davis was called for pass interference.
The penalty gave Atlanta a first down at the one with a second remaining. Rodgers was stopped near the goal line to end the half.