By Reid McEvoy
The New York Jets lost a game that went from amazing to terrible really quick. For the second straight week, the Jets blew a 14-point lead, and this time, they held that lead in the fourth quarter. The game was riddled with penalties, with the Jets having 12 for 124 yards and the Dolphins having 9 for 76.
In the middle of the third quarter, Dolphins quarterback Jay Cutler went down, and it still hasn’t been disclosed what the injury was, but he didn’t return for the game. And though this is normally a good thing for the opposing team, this time it meant Matt Moore would come in, and he has not only shown he is better than the average backup, but he is quite good against the Jets. Moore ended up having 13 completions for 188 yards with two touchdowns and an interception.
Up until the ill-advised play call and interception late in the game, Josh McCown was having a great day. He had 209 yards with three touchdown passes plus a rushing score. On the end of those touchdown passes were Austin Seferian-Jenkins, who had 21 yards on three catches, Jermaine Kearse, who’s 29-yard TD was his only catch, and Robby Anderson, who had three receptions for 35 yards.
The rushing game did benefit from having both of its stars back, but the only TD was from Josh McCown’s QB sneak. Powell had nine carries for 43 yards, Matt Forté had seven for 41 and Elijah McGuire had three for seven. Overall the game improved, but with no win, there’s not much to show for it. Forté and Powell did combine for 81 yards receiving, however, and one of those receptions was a screen to Forté on a 3rd & 18 where Forté broke multiple tackles and picked up a perfect 19 yards. The drive that he saved later led to a touchdown.
The defense also played relatively well as they had two interceptions, picking off each Dolphins’ quarterbacks. One was picked off at the 4-yard line by the birthday boy Muhammad Wilkerson, after Buster Skrine tipped it. It later led to McCown’s QB sneak. The other was made by rookie Marcus Maye on backup Matt Moore, and that soon allowed Seferian-Jenkins to catch a wide open touchdown. The Jets’ tackle-leader was linebacker Darron Lee, which is normally a good thing, but Lee was also the Jets’ leading penalty committer Sunday.
All-in-all, it was a good game, but when the Jets were given the ball in a “don’t mess up” situation, they couldn’t handle it, and it ended up costing them the game. Now the Jets will travel back home with the Falcons on their tail. The result of that game will not only be huge on demonstrating the skill of this team, but it will also be huge toward whether or not the Jets can talk playoffs.