Monday Morning Blitz: Dolphins ‘Takeover’ MetLife, hold on to beat Jets 20-12
The Miami Dolphins may have been on the road on Sunday, but they played like they were in front of the home crowd. They held off the Jets 2nd half rally and improved to 2-0 on the season. Was it a perfect game? Not by a long shot (and the Dolphins know that). However, the Dolphins looked very impressive in the 1st half of the game and despite a number of issues in the 2nd half (i.e. not scoring any points, turning the ball over, etc), they managed to win a game they would have traditionally lost.
Look, I’m not saying this team is winning the AFC East or that they are Super Bowl contenders. But think back over the years when we saw the Dolphins blow games like this. This team seems a little different and maybe it’s the new ‘culture’ Adam Gase is trying to instill in the locker room. This was never more evident than on the Dolphins last possession of the game. After a poorly executed second half that saw them score a total of zero points, the Dolphins got the ball back with 6 minutes left, clinging to an 8 point lead. All they did was run the ball (and pass a little), pick up 1st downs, and run out the clock…..and the game.
A HUGE shoutout to Dolfans NYC for another successful #MetLifeTakeover ! They did a great job of organizing a ridiculous tailgate at MetLife and could be heard on the broadcast, cheering from the upper deck. A number of Dolphins players thanked them on social media because they appreciated so many Dolphins fans showing up in enemy territory. Great job Igor, Michelle, and the rest of Dolfans NYC!
Here are our thoughts on the game, in the form of our one-liners:
- Coming into this game, we all worried about the Dolphins ability to stop the run. All they did was hold the Jets to 42 yards rushing in the game. 42 yards!
- Speaking of rushing yards, how about Ryan Tannehill rushing for 44 on a number of designed read-option plays? Doesn’t look like that knee is bothering him too much, huh? By the way, I’d be fine if Adam Gase used this play calling a little less, because it scares the hell out of me everytime Tannehill slides!
- Tannehill didn’t put up monster passing numbers, but he was efficient, posting a 123 passer rating. Yes, he only threw for 168 yards, but he threw 2 TDs and no interceptions.
- Tannehill must do a better job of 1. holding onto the football and not fumbling and 2. speeding up his decision making. That empty handed fumble was ugly and Xavien Howard’s INT bailed Tannehill out. More-so, especially early in the game, Tannehill’s internal clock for when he had to get rid of the ball due to pressure, seemed way off. This must be improved.
- How about a shout out to the Dolphins secondary? They’ve played well and created turnovers the 1st two weeks of the season. Yes, they gave up 334 yards to a rookie quarterback. BUT, that was kind of the game plan: Let the rookie try to beat you. The Dolphins focused on shutting down the running game of the Jets and dared Darnold to beat them. They picked him off twice and held the Jets to field goals when it mattered.
- What was Todd Bowles doing at the end of the first half? Terrible management of the clock, coming away with 0 points when you’re down 20-0.
- We saw flashes from a lot of the Dolphins younger players, specifically on defense. The d-line shut down the running game and was able to generate pressure on Sam Darnold. The young linebackers had their shining moments too. It’s nice to see this defense coming together and if they can avoid injuries, should only get better as the season goes on.
- Albert Wilson is a swiss-army knife, he can just beat teams in so many ways. Jarvis who?
- As much as it pains me to write this, I think Sam Darnold is going to be a good QB for a long time with the Jets. He has limited weapons right now, but I think he’s the real deal.
- DeVante Parker didn’t play again….
- Has anyone seen Mike Gesicki? Asking for a friend.
- Congrats to Frank Gore for becoming the 4th leading rusher in NFL history! His 3rd & 19 catch and run helped seal the game for the Dolphins.
- The Dolphins offensive line did a decent job of opening up holes in the running game, but really missed Josh Sitton in pass protection. If Ted Larsen isn’t the answer, Adam Gase has to find a way to fix the left guard spot quickly.
- Yes, the Patriots lost yesterday, which was great. Yes, the Dolphins are currently alone atop the AFC East, which is great. BUT, I’m not getting to excited until I see the Dolphins go on the road and beat a playoff-caliber team.
Next week, the Dolphins welcome in the Oakland Raiders. I love the fact they are playing a west coast team at 1pm, especially when you consider the Raiders were on the road this week AND will be wearing their black jerseys to melt in the heat! The Dolphins must, must, must must, avoid this being a trap game (the Patriots are waiting in week 4). If they can take care of business next weekend, they’ll get a real chance to prove themselves in week 4 against the Patriots in Foxboro.
Be sure to follow us on Twitter @PhinNation!