The Miami Dolphins needed a victory to stay in the playoff hunt and they got a big one. After several games where the team has started strong in the first half, but faded in the second half, they finally got a full game.
Miami could move the ball in the first half, but could not find the end zone. Tannehill was inaccurate with several downfield throws, but they dominated the time of possession and ended up with 6 points on two Caleb Strugis FGs, who was 3-4 on the day. In the second half, the offense put the game away with 2 TDs from Hartline and Wallace, who caught short passes, broke tackles, and ran in for scores. Hartline was the leading receiver with 9 receptions, 127 yards and a 31 yard touchdown. Wallace had 7 receptions for 82 yards and a 28 yard TD. Charles Clay had 7 catches for 80 yards. Ryan Tannehill played better in the second half and ended up 28 for 43, 331 yards, 2 TDs, and 1 INT where his arm was hit as he threw and the ball floated in the air. His QB rating was 94.2 for the game.
The running game was fairly effective considering that the Jets had the best run defense in the NFL. Lamar Miller carried the load with 22 carries for 72 yards. His YPC average was only 3.3 yards, but he had several big runs and a score that was ultimately reversed with replay. Mike Gillislee made his NFL debut, running for 21 yards on 6 carries. He was effective in the backfield and should get more PT as the season moves along. Tannehill pitched in 22 yards on 3 scrambles.
The OL deserves a huge amount of credit this game. They only allowed 1 sack all game, and opened up enough running lanes to keep the offense on the field. John Jerry was injured in the 4th quarter and was replaced by Sam Brenner. All in all, they allowed the running game to be effective and they kept Tannehill upright. Good job.
Aside from an inability to get in the end zone in the first half, the Dolphins scored 17 points in the second half to put the game away.
The defense was the story today. They dismantled, destroyed, and otherwise shut down the Jets offense. They set the tone early with a sack on the first play from scrimmage for the Jets. Olivier Vernon led the charge with 2.5 sacks, putting him at 10.0 sacks for the season. Linebackers Koa Misi and Phillip Wheeler contribute a sack and half a sack respectively. The Jets QBs were never able to get comfortable and overall looked terrible. The Jets are a good running team and the Dolphins shut the run down effectively for the first time in the while. The Jets totaled 99 yards on 22 carries, but nearly one third of that came on one play, where Chris Ivory was seemingly stopped at the line of scrimmage, but broke away and got a 32 gain out of it.
The secondary and overall coverage was excellent. Aside from some plays allowed after the game was well in hand and the team went into a prevent defense, they clamped down on the Jets receivers. They only allowed 13 receptions total, and no one had more than 3 receptions (Nelson, Winslow, Powell). Stephen Hill and Santonio Holmes were virtually shut out with Hill getting 1 catch for 2 yards. Brent Grimes continued his stellar season with a 4th quarter pick in the end zone on 4th down.
Overall, the defense was dominant and held the Jets to only a field goal. They only yielded 177 yards, 10 first downs and won the turnover battle.
This was a full team win and a dominant one. The Dolphins looked good on offense and defense and aside from penalties, was good on special teams as well. It was a well earned win over a bitter rival. Enjoy this one Dolphins fans!