Yes, Stevie Johnson's touchdown "celebration" didn't help his team. And yes the pass thrown to him late in the game in the red zone on the double move to the post should have been caught and may have gone for a game-winning touchdown. The shame of what unfolded in the latter stages of Buffalo's four-point loss to the Jets was how much it clouded the success Johnson had against Revis through most of the game.
Covered by Revis for virtually the entire game, Johnson turned in the most receptions against the Jets' perennial Pro Bowl corner in a single game since Miami's Brandon Marshall had 10 receptions against him last season (9/26/10). Johnson had eight catches for 75 yards.
"I thought Stevie and (Ryan Fitzpatrick) did a really good job against Revis in terms of being on the same page," said Bills head coach Chan Gailey.
"We saw on film that Stevie was doing a good job going against Revis because of what Stevie does and how Revis plays," said David Nelson. "He really stepped up and did a great job. You never see guys do those types of things to that type of player."
Johnson also had the only touchdown against Revis this season when he executed an air-tight quick slant for a five-yard scoring play.
When asked if he was playing off more in this second matchup with the Bills to avoid giving up the big play Revis downplayed the approach.
"We mixed it up this game," he said. "We know (Ryan) Fitzpatrick likes to throw the quick, underneath throws, so we knew at the end of the day that wasn't going to beat us. They caught a couple of underneath balls, but we knew at the end it wasn't going to be enough."
Truth be told the Bills came pretty close. Down four (28-24) with 15 seconds to play Johnson had eluded Revis and safety Brodney Pool in the right rear corner of the end zone on a 2nd-and-7 from the Jets 24. Fitzpatrick threw just slightly behind Johnson after rolling out to avoid pressure and the pass fell incomplete.
"I was running to my right and the safety was back there with Revis on Stevie and I tried to throw it by the safety and by the time Steve looked for the ball it was behind him there in the end zone," said Fitzpatrick. "We had some legitimate shots."
We'll likely never know whether Revis chose to play off because Johnson had victimized him for the longest pass play against him this season in the first matchup when he got off the corner's press coverage at the line to complete a 52-yard pass play.
Wes Welker had a 73-yard catch and run against the Jets this season, but New York defensive coordinator Mike Pettine indicated that the Jets had a zone call on that play so pinning it on Revis exclusively would be unfair.
"It was a good call by them," said Pettine of the Welker play in the Patriots game. "They set it up, it was a run-action fake, a run they had run earlier in the game. We were a step or two slow on the back end. And we do mix in some zone at times periodically."
Even if you count Welker's 73-yard pass play against Revis, the two-game total of the Patriots slot receiver is barely ahead that of Johnson's two-game total versus Revis. Welker compiled 11 receptions for 170 yards in his two games against New York. Johnson had 11 for 159 yards and a touchdown.
In fairness to Miami's Brandon Marshall, he has yet to face Revis a second time this season after a solid six catch 109-yard outing in their first meeting.
Ryan Fitzpatrick was disappointed he didn't go after Revis more in the first matchup against the Jets where he only targeted Johnson six times, with the receiver pulling in three catches for 84 yards.
"He is a great corner," said Fitzpatrick of Revis. "He's a really good player. I felt like coming out of the last game that I didn't throw it to Stevie as much as I should have. I just let Stevie know when it was one-on-one I was throwing it to him every time."
Fitzpatrick targeted Johnson 13 times Sunday with Johnson making eight catches against Revis. The Bills quarterback said his success with Johnson in the passing game got to a point where the Jets began giving Revis help over the top on Johnson.
"Stevie did a good job all day with his routes and the catches," Fitzpatrick said. "They started double teaming him a little bit and giving (Revis) some help."
"No, I'm not surprised," said Revis when asked if he thought he'd be challenged that much. "They threw the ball and he caught some balls. You have to give a little respect to what they did. That's what it was."
Jets head coach Rex Ryan, who considers Revis the best defensive player in the league, downplayed Johnson's day though he did give Buffalo's top wideout some praise.
"I don't necessarily know that he got the best of Revis," Ryan said. "Revis gave up a touchdown. It's the first time that's happened all season. He's human. He's still way better than any corner in football – head and shoulders better. I'm not going to say that the kid got the best of him. He had 75 yards receiving. I'll give the young man credit. He made some great catches. I think the guy is a great talent."
After a big day Johnson just couldn't provide the capper at the end as he and Fitzpatrick couldn't connect on three of the last four plays in game to lift their team to victory.
"It's tough because we battled," Johnson said. "All of the guys fought hard. The defense played like dogs. The offense played like dogs and I didn't make the play."