The Dolphin Report

By Ron Poltorack


Any win against the Jets is enough to bring a big smile to the face of Dolfans, but the 30-9 win in New Jersey on Sunday was truly a special one.  Much of the credit goes to the special teams which contributed big time for the Fins.  It started with Dan Carpenter going 3-3 on both field goals and extra points, but it certainly did not end there.  Special teams also contributed a successful on-sides kick in the first quarter, a blocked punt that resulted in a touchdown also in the first quarter, a blocked field goal at the end of the first half to preserve a 20-0 halftime lead, a recovery of a Jets’ on-sides kickoff attempt, a 57-yard kickoff return by Marcus Thigpen to go with his 13.0 average returning punts, and a 53.3-yard punting average for Brandon Fields who had 4 of his 6 punts downed inside the 20.  What an effort by special teams!

The defense played well, too, holding the Jets to 365 total net yards.  Mark Sanchez threw for 283 yards, but barely completed half of his passes (28 of 54) en route to a 65.6 QB rating for the day.  His 283 yard total was a bit deceptive given that 128 of those yards came in the fourth quarter with the game pretty much out of reach.  By then, the Fins’ defense had done its job for the day.

The biggest news on the day was the early first quarter injury to Ryan Tannehill who got sacked, came up limping and never returned to the game.  It is not believed that the injury is too serious, given that he remained on the sideline the rest of the afternoon.  And the way the defense and special teams were playing, it really did not affect the outcome of the game.   Moore was efficient, but not spectacular going 11 of 19 for 131 yards with 1 TD and no INTs.  More than half of his passing yards came on two passes, a 37-yarder to Marlon Moore and a 30-yarder to ex-Jet Jabar Gaffney.

The Fins are now riding a 3-game winning streak and next week play the Colts in Indianapolis where they will face Peyton Manning’s successor, Andrew Luck.  The Fins and the Colts are both 4-3, but unlike the Fins’ (who are a +24) the Colts have a negative points differential (-35).

Although the offense was not particularly special on Sunday, it did put up enough points to take any drama out of the fourth quarter.  But perhaps the most special offensive moment belonged to right guard Richie Incognito, even though his special effort came when play was stopped.  After the Fins’ got their last field goal that all  but eded the game, Incognito waved bye-bye to the Jets’ sideline and blew them a couple of kisses as he walked off the field.  Given the trash-talking out of Jets’ camp this last week, that kiss-off was indeed special.

Yes, the win on Sunday was special for a number of reasons, one of which had to be saved for the end: It was also special because it put the stinkin’ Jets in last place in the AFC East.  That makes this win really special!

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