EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- Last week it was the touchdown that wasn't. This time, it was the fumble recovery that wasn't.
The New York Jets were burned by a premature whistle in Monday night's 27-19 loss to the Chicago Bears at MetLife Stadium -- a blown call that probably cost them a touchdown. At least that's how they saw it.
The controversial play occurred with 1:30 remaining in the second quarter. David Harris sacked Jay Cutler for a 10-yard loss, stripping the Bears quarterback of the ball in the process. Demario Davis scooped it up and ran 44 yards, uncontested, for a touchdown.
But not so fast.
Cutler was ruled down by contact, meaning no fumble. Because it happened in the final two minutes of the half, the replay booth reviewed the play, overturning the call on the field. It was ruled a fumble, recovered by the Jets. But because the play was blown dead, Davis wasn't allowed to advance the ball.
So the Jets got possession, but they felt they were robbed of a score.
"I knew it was a fumble, and it should've been a touchdown," Davis said. "I talked to a couple of refs before today. They're supposed to let that play stay open. They're taught to call that a fumble because you can always review it. If you blow it dead, the play dies there. That came back to bite us in the butt, but we didn't have the best officiating in this game. That's not an excuse. We know we have to play better."
A touchdown there would've given the Jets a 20-17 halftime lead, seizing the momentum after a terrible start. They still had the ball at the Bears' 46, with a chance to end the first half on an upbeat note, but they got too pass happy and went three-and-out.
Rex Ryan, not wanting to incur a fine for criticizing the officiating, didn't want to comment. But he let his feelings be known.
"I'll let you guys figure out how frustrating that is," he said.
It wasn't the only questionable call that went against the Jets. In the first quarter, cornerback Darrin Walls was called for pass interference on a long pass to Alshon Jeffery, a 33-yard penalty that set up the Bears' second touchdown. The replay showed that Jeffery was grabbing Walls, not the other way around.
“I felt like I was in perfect position,” Walls said. “I tried to go up but my hand was held, but they called it on me. So you got to live with it.”
There were sour grapes in the Jets' locker room.
"What else is new?" Harris said, commenting on the calls that went against the Jets. "It seems like we're playing against two teams out there sometimes."