SANTA CLARA, Calif. (AP) Bilal Powell has been a complementary running back for most of his career, trying to make the most of whatever opportunity comes his way.
When Matt Forte went down with a knee injury in the first quarter and the New York Jets not wanting to put too much on Bryce Petty’s plate in his second career start, Powell got plenty of chances.
Powell ran for 145 yards and scored the game-winning 19-yard touchdown in overtime that helped the Jets overcome a 14-point deficit to beat the San Francisco 49ers 23-17 on Sunday.
After reaching the end zone on his career-high 29th carry, Powell fell on his back and extended his arms in celebration while waiting for the referee to announce a penalty on the 49ers that gave the Jets (4-9) the win. Powell then handed the ball to a young Jets fan in the crowd.
”I didn’t know what happened,” he said. ”I just knew I was tired and I was in the end zone. I’m not a big celebration guy. I was just waiting for the confirmation.”
Powell had good reason to be tired with 34 offensive touches for 179 yards. He had carried the ball 20 times in a game just twice in his six-year career before being given the big load against a tiring defense for the 49ers (1-12).
Powell scored on a 5-yard run that helped spark the comeback and then gained 24 more yards on the game-tying field goal at the end of regulation.
”If it wasn’t for him, I don’t know if we would have even won this game,” coach Todd Bowles said. ”He single-handedly, from my point of view at least, broke every tackle he could break. He caught every ball. He ran. He blocked. He did everything, and he had outstanding effort.”
Here are some other takeaways from the game:
Petty’s day couldn’t have started any worse when he threw an interception that set up San Francisco’s first TD on his first pass of the game. But he rebounded to make some key plays, including a 2-point conversion run that cut the deficit to 17-14, and finished 23 for 35 for 257 yards. His biggest play might have been ill-advised as he threw across his body after scrambling in overtime to complete a 26-yard pass to Robby Anderson that helped set up the winning score.
”He was up and down,” Bowles said. ”He had some plays he’d like to have back. He made some throws. He made some dangerous throws. He got away with some things, but he settled down and made some gutsy plays.”
After getting off to a fast start with two touchdowns in the first five minutes and taking a 17-3 lead midway through the second quarter, the 49ers offense stalled . San Francisco was held to 133 yards, no points and punted six times on the final eight drives over the last 42:10 of game time. Colin Kaepernick completed all seven passes for 95 yards in the first quarter, but went 8 for 19 for 38 yards the rest of the way as coach Chip Kelly got conservative with offensive linemen Joe Staley (hamstring) and Daniel Kilgore (leg), tight end Vance McDonald (shoulder) and receiver Torrey Smith (concussion) all out.
”We have to be able to adjust, adapt and go out and still win football games,” Kaepernick said.
HYDE’S BIG DAY
Carlos Hyde had a career day for the 49ers, rushing for 193 yards on 17 carries and catching a 7-yard touchdown . He had four runs of more than 20 yards but also was stopped for no gain on fourth-and-2 from the New York 37 on the opening possession of overtime.
”That’s a play we’ve been running all game,” Hyde said. ”The Jets just played good defense right there. … I didn’t have a lane where I could go. I just tried to hit it up there and tried to get a push, but they did a good job there.”
CBS reported earlier in the day that 49ers general manager Trent Baalke’s job status is in jeopardy because of a second straight losing season. Kelly backed Baalke.
”I have tremendous confidence in Trent,” he said. ”I have not heard anything about that.”
The Jets have another short week before hosting Miami on Saturday night. The 49ers will try to snap their 12-game losing streak when they travel cross-country to take on Atlanta.
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