EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- Sure, the New York Jets got a few breaks along the way.
But when it mattered most, they showed up large.
The Jets, with the postseason on the line in the final game at Giants Stadium, dusted the Cincinnati Bengals 37-0 on Sunday night.
The clubs will meet again in Cincinnati in six days, and the Jets gave them plenty to think about -- even though the Bengals scratched running back Cedric Benson and benched many of their best players in the second half.
Jets rookie quarterback Mark Sanchez was removed from the equation. He was limited to quick passes when necessary and finished 8-of-16 for 63 yards and zero touchdowns. But the most important stat for the rookie was zero turnovers.
Sanchez was credited with a touchdown pass to Jerricho Cotchery in the second quarter, but that was changed to a run instead.
The Jets had more than three times the rushing yards as the Bengals. Thomas Jones ran for 78 yards and two touchdowns, but receiver Brad Smith did the most damage on the ground. Smith ran four times for 92 yards and a touchdown on direct-snap plays.
Sunday night was the second shutout for the NFL's top-rated defense. The Jets held the Bengals to 72 rushing yards and zero passing yards. Not a typo there. Zero passing yards.