The New York Jets really stuck it to their divisional rivals, beating the Miami Dolphins by the score of 20-6.
The New York Jets came out of nowhere in this game, didn’t they? Who saw this performance coming? It wasn’t like there really was any evidence that they could perform this well. They got beaten down by the Oakland Raiders last week and showed no signs of life against the Bills the week before. That all changed against the Miami Dolphins.
Let’s talk about it.
The story of this game really was the Jets defense. To be honest, things looked similar to the first two games early on. Until late in the first half the offense didn’t get much going at all. But the story was the defense. They stopped Jay Ajayi early and often. He rushed for 16 yards all game on 11 carries, and his longest run was eight yards. In short, it means the Jets finally figured things out against the run. They stopped looking overrated.
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The Dolphins didn’t even get across midfield until the second half of the game. Think about that compared to what we saw over the first two weeks of the season. What a difference! It was like night and day.
The difference came in the fundamentals. They tackled. Last week there were missed tackles all over the place. This week, it was hard to notice any. It’s really a simple concept. Go tackle the guy with the football.
Late in the half was when the offense broke through. For a team that couldn’t get the ball down the field, how about a 69 yard touchdown pass? It looked initially like Robby Anderson wasn’t going to be able to catch up, but he turned on the second gear and BOOM! He caught it in stride and he was gone. The Jets didn’t look back.
If you are looking for a blemish, the only one really was the inability to get the running game going. 103 yards was better, but certainly not great. I like the three-headed monster of Matt Forte, Bilal Powell and Elijah McGuire, but they need to average more than three yards per carry. That would have made the offense really complete.
Josh McCown was fantastic. 18-23 was about as good as he will ever look. He made quick decisions and accurate throws. McCown may not be the quarterback of the future but he did everything they could possibly ask of him. For a “journeyman”, he certainly hasn’t embarrassed himself or the Jets.
The tank fans are going to be upset, but the bottom line is this game was encouraging. The Jets actually do have some young talent on this football team. Yes the roster needs help, but they aren’t all bad. It’s nice to see them play well. And tankers? One win won’t kill the first overall pick.