The mathematics of the Jets season didn't change too much on Sunday afternoon.
Beating the Rams 27-13 leaves the Jets at 4-6. That keeps them two games out of a Wild Card spot and still teetering on the brink of irrelevancy in terms of the 2012 NFL season.
The Jets could win out and find themselves in the postseason, although it is hard to believe that a team that lost nine of 12 games heading into Sunday is going to win seven straight games to close out the season. That chance exists, though, and the Jets will go into Thursday night hoping to make it happen.
The Jets needed Sunday's win to give themselves a chance to actually concentrate on football for the rest of the season and, hopefully, make decisions about the future based on more than just an emotional response to things going downhill in a hurry.
Sunday's win showed why people actually had higher expectations for the Jets coming into the season. The defense adjusted and shut down St. Louis' offense and the Jets' own offense was a conservative running-based attack that was able to keep the ball moving while setting up things in the air.
That's Rex Ryan's eternal blueprint and he was able to get it to work on Sunday. Repeating it against the Patriots on Thursday won't be easy, but it at least feels like a possibility in the wake of victory.
There's a word for that possibility. It's hope, something that was in exceedingly short supply for the Jets at this time last week.
Here's the rest of the good, bad and ugly from Sunday's win.
GOOD: Mark Sanchez has always been at his best when he's able to make plays off of a strong running game and that continued to be true with his 15-of-20, no turnover performance against the Rams on Sunday. It definitely didn't seem to hurt that the Jets decided against handing the ball to Tim Tebow after Sanchez did something right, something that only makes last week's chaos all the harder to understand.
GOOD: That strong running game was led by Shonn Greene and Bilal Powell, who were both able to eat yards and clock behind an offensive line that did a much better job in that phase than they did in the passing game. It wasn't explosive, but it was effective and that's a big step in the right direction.
UGLY: Bart Scott's attempt at a "media mutiny" after the game has been described as a joke that went over like a lead balloon, but frankly that sounds like an attempt to backtrack after Scott tried to soil a good day by acting like a buffoon. Give safety Yeremiah Bell credit for telling Scott he was acting the fool.
GOOD: Muhammad Wilkerson came up with a big play for the second straight week, stripping Sam Bradford and helping set the Jets up to take the lead. Wilkerson's been solid since getting to town, but now he's starting to make plays on a defense still short on guys who can do that.
BAD: Any pangs of regret about losing Brian Schottenheimer as offensive coordinator should have died on Sunday when he called a play featuring an empty backfield on third-and-one. Sam Bradford, a former first overall pick, didn't look much different from Sanchez in the game.
BAD: The Jets got a field goal blocked on Sunday, the latest in a long string of special teams errors. It would have gotten worse if not for a fairly borderline penalty call that wiped out a 100-yard kickoff return for a touchdown.
GOOD: The Jets hadn't won a game in 35 days before winning in St. Louis. Whatever else comes this year, it's nice to experience that feeling instead of another crushing loss.