The New York Jets (3-3) will play the Miami Dolphins (3-2) on Sunday in Miami at 1PM on CBS. After being absolutely demolished by the Jets in Week 3, Jay Cutler and the Dolphins are coming off a win over one of the best teams in the league, the Atlanta Falcons. So which Dolphins team will the Jets play, the one that looked like a steaming pile of trash in September or the one that orchestrated a miraculous comeback over a strong Super Bowl contender in October?
The Jets themselves are coming off a strong, if not heartbreaking, showing against the New England Patriots. I believe that Todd Bowles was able to do enough with this team to show in that game that their three wins this season weren’t flukes and that this is a team that is much better than anyone thought they were going to be.
Thinking about the upcoming game, it really feels like the Jets are going to be able to win. They are better in most areas of the game. The only areas that the Dolphins are certainly better than the Jets are at defensive line and wide receiver (although the Jet wide receivers have been playing well of late). If Jay Ajayi decides to play well on Sunday (which isn’t a given, he’s one of the most inconsistent running backs in the league), then obviously that’s another strength that the Dolphins have. Otherwise, the Jets are the same or better in most areas of the game.
Even at quarterback, it’s hard to say that Josh McCown isn’t better than Jay Cutler. In fact, and while realizing that stats can be misleading, there’s such a huge disparity on the stat sheet between the two quarterbacks that it’s almost amazing that Cutler was once considered at least decent (if not good) when being compared to an extremely mediocre quarterback like McCown. So far Cutler has a QB rating of 75.2 and a 61% completion rate while McCown has an 89.2 rating and 70% completion rate. McCown might be having one of his best years as a pro. Cutler is having his worst year so far.
On defense, the Jets secondary is playing out of their minds of late. I have no doubt in my mind that they’ll be able to keep the Dolphins in check. The Jets as a whole were able to limit Tom Brady in a way no other defense other than the Chiefs have been able to this year, and that was mostly thanks to the play of the corners, safeties and linebackers in coverage.
The thing that worries me most about this game (and this team in general) is the play of the defensive line. They have been horrendous both at stopping the run and getting to the quarterback this year. For me, the X factor in this game (as it was in the last game) is Jay Ajayi.
If the Jets can stop Jay Ajayi like they did last time, I think the result will be similar and the Jets will be able to pull off another victory.
On the offensive side of the ball for the Jets, I think that they should be able to score about the same amount of points as they did last time (20). The Dolphins defense has gotten better, but at the same time, so has the Jets offense as John Morton has really seemed to come into his own. Additionally, the Jets always seem to play well in Miami.
Final Score Prediction: 24-17 Jets win.
I think this game should be closer than the last one as Miami has been better over the past few games than they were against the Jets, but I still think that these Jets are, if not “for real,” than closer to being “for real” than the Dolphins.
I’d obviously play Bilal Powell if he’s healthy, although as nothing more than a FLEX for now. We need to see how he plays coming off of his injury and whether his line can run block consistently. Also, if Austin Seferian-Jenkins is available in your league, I’d pick him up right now. So long as Josh McCown is the quarterback of this team, ASJ is a weekly TE 1 in my opinion.
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