Richard Todd threw three touchdown passes, two of them to Wesley Walker in a 95-second span of the second period, as the New York Jets beat the Houston Oilers today, 33-17, for their first victory this season.
The Jets forced six turnovers, had eight sacks and survived a club-record 15 penalties that cost them 116 yards.
Todd, who threw a one-yard touchdown pass to Kevin Long in the first quarter, completed touchdown passes of 28 and 39 yards to Walker for a 21-10 halftime lead.
Houston pulled within six points on Ken Burrough's long run with a short pass, a play that covered 70 yards, but Long clinched the game with a two-yard touchdown plunge early in the fourth quarter.
Todd completed 25 of 39 passes for 312 yards and Walker caught eight passes for 128. Houston's Ken Stabler was 10 of 20 for 138 yards, but was sacked seven times. Houston (2-2) allowed eight times last week against Miami.
"All I know is I'm up to my elbows in alligators," said Stabler. "Everything broke down."
Walker's second touchdown reception was set up by Johnny Lynn, whom the Jets use on defense in passing situations. Lynn intercepted Stabler at the Oiler 39. On the next play, Todd handed off to fullback Mike Augustyniak, who moved to the line of scrimmage, turned and lateraled to Todd. Todd then passed to Walker, who was 10 yards behind the nearest defender, for a 21-7 lead.