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Matt Forte full of praise for offensive coordinator John Morton this time

New York Jets running back Matt Forte looks

New York Jets running back Matt Forte looks to get past Buffalo Bills strong safety Micah Hyde and Buffalo Bills cornerback Shareece Wright during the first quarter at MetLife Stadium on Thursday, Nov. 2, 2017. Credit: Lee S. Weissman

Jets running back Matt Forte was highly critical of offensive coordinator John Morton’s play-calling after Sunday’s 25-20 loss to the Falcons, but Forte offered high praise for his coach in the wake of Thursday night’s convincing 34-21 win over the Bills at MetLife Stadium.

With Morton following through on his promise to call more running plays, Forte led a resurgent rushing attack that produced 194 yards and three touchdowns as the Jets snapped a three-game losing streak and improved to 4-5.

“We had some difficulties and frustrations on a short week and addressed them on Monday and came out on a Thursday game and ran the ball like we did and threw the ball like we did, we did a great job of that,” Forte said. “Kudos to coach Johnny Mo [Morton] for sticking with the run, like he promised us we would do.”

Forte and Morton spoke Monday about the running back’s criticism of the game plan against the Falcons, and the two clearly were on the same page against the Bills. Forte had a team-high 77 rushing yards on 14 carries and scored on runs of 10 and 5 yards. Bilal Powell gained 74 yards, including a 51-yard run up the middle in the third quarter, and rookie Elijah McGuire added 30 yards on 13 carries. Quarterback Josh McCown ran five times for 13 yards, including a 10-yard touchdown.

Forte said there wasn’t any added pressure on him in the wake of his public criticism of Morton.

“This is my 10th year in the league, and I just feel the pressure of coming out and doing my job well and bringing everybody up together,” he said. “That’s what it’s about.”

Forte commended the offensive line, which did a superb job with run blocking.

“They opened up the holes. All I had to do is use my vision to read the hole and make people miss at the end,” he said. “We played to what we do best. Our offensive line likes to come off the ball straight ahead and hit guys in the mouth and wear guys out like that. I think we started to wear on them as the game went on. You saw some runs pop here and there. It’s like a boxing match, where you just got to wear your opponent down.”

McCown was happy to see Forte bounce back after Sunday’s game, in which he had only four carries for seven yards.

“I think I’ve been teammates with Matt as long as I’ve been teammates with anyone in the league,” said McCown, who played with Forte in Chicago. “When he plays well, it’s fun. To see him in there, the offensive line opening holes, he made some great runs.”

New York Sports