Coming off the high from Week 2 against the Chargers, the Miami Dolphins entered their Week 3 matchup against the rival New York Jets as the overwhelming favorites. However, it now appears that this favorite moniker may have gone straight to the team’s head.
Laying an egg, the Dolphins were utterly manhandled by the Jets. Losing the contest by a score of 20-6, Miami now sits with a 1-1 record as the team heads across the Atlantic to take on the New Orleans Saints at Wembley Stadium in London, England.
Taking the chance to look back at last Sunday’s embarrassing result, let’s take a look at how the Miami Dolphins’ rookies fared in their first game against a division rival.
Charles Harris — Defensive End
Week 3 Stats: 32 defensive snaps (50.8%), One tackle
MIA. Not only is this the short name for Miami but it also accurately describes the missing in action Charles Harris. Despite playing in just over 50 percent of the Dolphins defensive snaps against the Jets, Harris only managed to rack up a single tackle.
Add in the viral video of Harris executing a perfect block on fellow pass rusher Andre Branch and you have a recipe for early season woes. It is still early in the season though and Harris still has time to get his rookie campaign on track. However, the early signs are not promising.
Davon Godchaux — Defensive Tackle
Week 3 Stats: 35 defensive snaps (55.6%), Two tackles
Seeing a slight uptick in playing percentage this week, Davon Godchaux remained as the Dolphins secondary starter at defensive tackle going into Sunday’s game. Add in that Jordan Phillips missed the game through injury and Godchaux had a chance to cement his status as a starter on this team.
Unfortunately for himself, things did not go to plan. Recording two tackles during the game, Godchaux also drew back-to-back flags for offsides. Following the flags, Godchaux was replaced on the field by fellow rookie Vincent Taylor. With these types of mental mistakes occurring, Godchaux may have opened the door for Jordan Phillips to surpass him in the depth chart for Week 4.
Chase Allen — Linebacker
Week 3 Stats: 28 defensive snaps (44.4%), Seven tackles
While the overall game was a downer for the Miami Dolphins, fans and coaches had to be impressed by rookie linebacker Chase Allen. Recording three tackles in his debut game last week, Allen continued to showcase his ability this week, tying for the team lead with seven tackles while only playing in 44.4 percent of the defensive snaps.
With the defense in a stage of flux at this point in the season, Allen is proving his worth from an overall standpoint. Expect Allen to see some similar game time next week with the potential to once again prove his worth to the team.
Matt Haack — Punter
Week 3 Stats: Seven punts, 333 total yards, 47.6 average
Forced into action quite a bit last Sunday, Matt Haack had a solid day punting the football. Coming into the game seven times, Haack helped earn the Dolphins defense good field position on a couple of kicks. Recording a long punt of 64 yards, Haack is showing why Miami chose him over former punter Matt Darr.
Everything has to have a downside though and for Haack, that downside was his first career interception, something you don’t see everyday from a NFL punter.
Vincent Taylor — Defensive Tackle
Week 3 Stats: 29 defensive snaps (46.0%), Three tackles
Seeing a massive jump in playing time from last week, Vincent Taylor was the biggest beneficiary of Jordan Phillips absence. Playing in 46 percent of the Dolphins defensive snaps, Taylor outperformed Davon Godchaux in both normal stats and overall performance.
Recording three tackles, Taylor was graded as the 19th best defensive lineman for Week 3 by Pro Football Focus. With Godchaux suffering some mental errors, Taylor should definitely see a solid amount of playing time next week against New Orleans.
Maurice Smith -- Cornerback
Week 3 Stats: 11 special teams snaps
Much like last week, Maurice Smith was confined to the special teams for Week 3. Likely to be his normal role going forward, Maurice Smith will likely be either a healthy scratch or special teams performer going forward this season.
Week 2 Rookie Scratches: Isaac Asiata (G), Torry McTyer (CB), Eric Smith (OT), Cordrea Tankersley (CB)