Johnson's big game powers Cardinals' romp of Jets

Johnson's big game powers Cardinals' romp of Jets


GLENDALE, Ariz. -- Stopping the run was one of the few things the New York Jets had done well this season.

Until they faced David Johnson and the Arizona Cardinals.

Johnson rushed for 111 yards and three touchdowns, and the Cardinals shut down the listless Jets 28-3 on Monday night.

Johnson scored on runs of 58, 2 and 2 yards while becoming the first player to rush for three scores against the Jets since LeSean McCoy did it five years ago.

"I say it each and every week. David's special," Arizona cornerback Patrick Peterson said. "I mean very, very, very special. We got us one in (No.) 31."

The Cardinals (3-3) won their second in a row to climb back to .500. New York (1-5) lost its fourth straight in a rough return to Arizona for Todd Bowles, who was defensive coordinator for the Cardinals for two seasons before getting the Jets coaching job two years ago.

"We've won two in a row," Arizona coach Bruce Arians said. "We're still just a .500 ballclub, but I like the way we look right now."

Arians took no great joy in beating Bowles. Their connection goes back to their days together at Temple three decades ago.

"I'm glad it's over," Arians said.

The Jets' Ryan Fitzpatrick was 16 of 31 for 174 yards and was benched in favor of Geno Smith after New York's longest drive of the night ended in an interception in the end zone late in the third quarter.

"As an offense we are just not consistent right now and the offense goes as the quarterback goes," Fitzpatrick said. "I have got to play better."

Smith's lone series at quarterback ended when he was intercepted by Tyrann Mathieu with 4:20 to play.

"The game was 28-3 with eight minutes left in the game," Bowles said. "We weren't doing anything else. I just wanted to give him some reps. Like a relief pitcher, a starting pitcher, on this day you put in the relief pitcher. Fitz will be (the starter) next week."

Arizona's Carson Palmer , back after missing a 33-21 win at San Francisco with a concussion, completed 23 of 34 passes for 213 yards before leaving with a hamstring strain after throwing a 9-yard TD pass to Michael Floyd with 8:20 remaining.

Arizona scored in the first quarter for the first time this season on the second time Johnson touched the ball.

"Our coach has been harping on us about that," Johnson said. "It felt good to get in the end zone. I felt like that's actually what started everyone getting hyped, everyone getting into the game."

The second-year running back dodged a pair of defenders near the line of scrimmage, and then raced to the end zone on his longest run of the season. Johnson also rushed for 157 yards in the win against the 49ers, winning NFC offensive player of the week honors.

The Jets entered the game second in the NFL in rushing defense at 68 yards per game. They were outgained on the ground 171-33.

New York had 130 yards in the first half, 70 on three receptions by Brandon Marshall . Marshall's 36-yard catch over the middle set up New York's only score, Nick Folk's' 39-yard field goal.

Arizona scored on a pair of 14-play drives in the second half. Johnson got his second 2-yard TD run up the middle, and Palmer passed to Floyd for another TD.

The Jets drove to the Cardinals 14 late in the third quarter but D.J. Swearinger intercepted Fitzpatrick's pass in the end zone to end the threat. It was Fitzpatrick's league-worst 11th interception of the season.

But Marshall said the interception was his fault.

"I read it wrong, Ryan read it right," he said. "He threw a pick, but it's my pick. I've said it all along this season, interceptions are on everyone."

The Jets were 2 for 13 on third-down conversions. They were 0 for 8 before converting one during their long third-quarter drive.

There were 19 penalties in the sloppy game - 10 against New York, nine against Arizona.

Jets: New York returns home to play the Baltimore Ravens on Sunday.

Cardinals: Arizona plays its third straight prime-time game, this one a Sunday night matchup at home against NFC West leader Seattle.

Terrell Owens selects former 49ers coach as his Hall of Fame presenter


Terrell Owens selects former 49ers coach as his Hall of Fame presenter

Terrell Owens has selected former 49ers special teams and wide receivers coach George Stewart as his presenter into the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

“He knew what to get out of me,” Owens told the Hall of Fame.

“He knows who I am. To know who Terrell Owens is, you have to spend some time with him. . . George Stewart became a father figure to me.”

Owens was elected into the Hall of Fame in February. He will enter the Hall of Fame in a class that also includes wide receiver Randy Moss, linebackers Ray Lewis, Brian Urlacher and Robert Brazile, safety Brian Dawkins, guard Jerry Kramer, and contributor Bobby Beathard.

Owens played special teams under Stewart’s direction as a rookie after coming to the 49ers in 1996.

From 2000 to ’02, Stewart worked as the 49ers’ wide receivers coach. Owens was selected to three consecutive All-Pro teams and Pro Bowls during that time. Owens ranks No. 2 all time behind Jerry Rice with 15,934 receiving yards. He is third all-time with 153 receiving touchdowns.

Stewart is set to enter his 30th NFL season as an assistant coach and his second as special-teams coordinator of the Los Angeles Chargers.

The Class of 2018 will be enshrined inside Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium in Canton, Ohio, on Saturday, Aug. 4.

Sherman makes his concern over Reid's free-agency status loud and clear


Sherman makes his concern over Reid's free-agency status loud and clear

Safety Eric Reid, who has 69 career starts and one Pro Bowl appearance in his five-year NFL career, remains available on the open market more than a week after the opening of free agency.

Reid has received no reported interest from NFL teams in what has been an unusually soft market for free-agent safeties. But, with Reid, there is another variable that could be playing a factor.

Reid was at the forefront of the social activism that has been a major storyline in the NFL since the beginning of the 2016 season. Reid and former 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick took a knee during the playing of the national anthem in protest of racial inequality in America.

Reid has remained outspoken and has taken a knee as a way to “make people uncomfortable about the issues.” Reid has been clear his protest has nothing to do with the flag or the anthem.

“The anthem is just a vehicle to get us to have those conversations,” Reid told NBC Sports Bay Area last season. “It’s the platform we have. It’s the only time we have to get the eyeballs on us to do that. If we just did locker-room talks afterward, nobody would even know. Strategically, this is the only way we thought we could do it.”

Veteran cornerback Richard Sherman, who signed a three-year contract with the 49ers on March 10, had been the Seattle Seahawks’ player representative. He is a vice president of the NFL Players Association. Reid was the 49ers’ union representative.

Sherman said he is keeping a close eye on Reid’s situation.

“We are concerned, because he played at a high level for just about every year that he’s played in this league,” Sherman said on Tuesday. “He’s made enough plays to be signed with a team and to make his money. He deserves his money. Safeties make a certain amount. I would think he’s top-five, top-10 safeties in this league, so he deserves to be paid accordingly.

“So there is concern there, because you would think a player of his caliber and his quality would be picked up by now. I think great teams are still looking and people are still looking for players. I’m praying that he gets picked up. But if he doesn’t, then I think there will be a conversation with the league office and the union on potential league action.”

Kaepernick never got so much as an opportunity to compete for an NFL roster spot during training camp last season. Could Reid, 26, be heading for the same fate?

Reid addressed the issue last week on social media:

“The notion that I can be a great signing for your team for cheap, not because of my skill set but because I’ve protested systemic oppression, is ludicrous. If you think is, then your mindset is part of the problem too.”

The 49ers have not placed a priority on re-signing Reid. The club already has potential starting safeties Jimmie Ward, Jaquiski Tartt and Adrian Colbert under contract for the upcoming season.

Reid, whom the 49ers traded up to select with the No. 18 overall pick in the 2013 NFL Draft, has 10 career interceptions. He appeared to thrive last season in run support as a safety who played closer to the line of scrimmage.