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Dolphins Lose Nail-Biter To Jets: Complete Analysis

The Miami Dolphins win streak against the New York Jets has come to an abrupt end at 3 games tonight.

In a game that featured the Dolphins trailing by a score of 14-0 early, then with the Dolphins coming all the way back with 17 unanswered points, the end was sure to be a nail-biter.

The Dolphins had a chance to win the game at the end, or at least tie it. With 1:55 left and two timeouts, quarterback Chad Henne connected on a 30 yard pass to to star wide receiver Brandon Marshall to put the Dolphins inside the red zone with just under a minute to go.

But then things went awry for the comeback kids.

The Dolphins had a first and 10, and were trying to pass their way into the endzone. They failed. Henne was looking to connect with Marshall all four chances he got, and all four times Marshall was covered.

So with a little time left, why dont you try and run the ball, which is the strength of your team, into the endzone? They could have done this on two seperate occasions actually, which again brings questions surrounding the offensive playcalling to the forefront.

I’ll add a little more insight once I see some replays and more analysis and stats over the course of the week, but for now here are my thoughts directly after the game.

  • After a slow start, Henne and Brandon Marshall really started to light up the Jets defense, with Henne passing for 363 yards and 2 touchdowns on a 26-44 passing night. Meanwhile, Marshall hauled in 10 passes for 166 yards and a touchdown, with a long of 40 yards. These two at times dominated the Jets defense, and this seems to just be the beginning of something special.
  • Jason Allen struggled at times tonight, especially in crunchtime. Only a week dismissed from his clutch play last week against Brett Favre, Allen gave up a costly 3rd down catch to Braylon Edwards, a touchdown to Edwards, where Allen slipped on the play, and also had a pass interefernce call at the end of the game that gave the Jets a first down on the 1 yard line. This is one of the questions, and problems that I’ve always had with Allen. When he’s up he’s up, but when he is down, he can certainly cost this team a win.
  • Meanwhile Vontae Davis shut down Jerricho Cotchery, holding him to two catches for 20 yards. What I do not understand about the defensive scheme tonight is why they did not match up Davis on Edwards after Braylon was entered into the game after the end of the first quarter. It would only make sense for the Fins to match up their best cornerback against the Jets best receiver!
  • Cameron Wake, along with Karlos Dansby were at times invisible tonight. While Dansby had 7 tackles, Wake only had one.  Wake was expected to be a force tonight, along with Dansby, and instead of making the game changing plays that they made so many times the past two weeks, they disappeared. This needs to be corrected in time for next weeks game against the Patriots.
  • The special teams play really was the killer for the Dolphins tonight. Miami allowed a blocked punt, which all but handed the Jets at least 3 points right off the bat, and also a 54 yard kickoff return by Brad Smith which put the Jets in Dolphins territory as well. Special teams needs to be corrected, or else it could be the chief cause for some more tough losses this season.
  • Ricky Williams fumbled his third ball in two games tonight, although he was ruled down by contact. What seems to be the problem with Ricky? Is it durability issues? Ronnie Brown performed well when he was in, but the team needs Williams to figure out his case of “fumble-itis” before it starts to cost them some games.
  • Not only did Marshall have a big game for the Dolphins, but his supporting cast, consisting of Brian Hartline and Davone Bess had a combined 170 yard night (86 for Bess, 84 for Hartline), on 11 catches combined. This could be a dangerous group if they continue to play like this.
  • All of the nonsense that you will hear about the Jets outplaying the Dolphins is false. The bottomline is that the Dolphins outplayed the Jets, committed less penalties, proved to be more disciplined,  but shot themselves in the foot too many times, such as the Allen pass intereference call in the end zone at the end. Defensive end Kendall Langford also dropped a sure interception that would have all but gauranteed the Dolphins at least a field goal. If Langford makes that interception, that bounced right off of his facemask and out of his hands, the Dolphins quite possibly win the game.
  • The Dolphins showed tonight that they can beat the Jets, that they can make it a close game against the glamour team from New York. Tony Sparano and his coordinators outcoached the obnoxious Rex Ryan and his band of idiots tonight. At times Ryan had no clue what to do, and wasted all of his timeouts in the first half before the second quarter was even half-way over.
  • As much as I would like to say that Henne outperformed Sanchez tonight, I simply cannot say that. Henne threw for more yards, but in the end Sanchez was the quarterback that led his team to victory, and not Henne, so I have to begrudgingly give the nod to Sanchez this time.

This game was a heartbreaker for the Dolphins, and it will take a victory over the division-rival New England Patriots next week on Monday Night Football to send the team into the BYE on high spirits. The team simply cannot go into the BYE 2-2-, especially with the almighty Green Bay Packers lurking directly after, as our Week 6 opponent.

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