In what was for the most part a boring game, the Dolphins managed to pull out one of their most needed wins of the season nd perhaps might have played spoiler a bit against the playoff hopeful Jets.
Let’s make this quick and painless. Chad Henne had an off-day. Brandon Marshall had an off-day. Ronnie Brown and Ricky Williams were completely ineffective for yet another game this season. The offensive line couldn’t seem to generate any push on the ground game and ended up surrendering 5 sacks to the Jets.
To sum everything up, the offense put in another poor showing, and my frustrations with them are starting to grow.
The defense had to come up big in this game for the Dolphins to escape the Meadowlands with a victory and they did just that. Led by linebacker Cameron Wake, who registered 2 sacks, 2 tackles for losses, one forced fumble and 5 tackles, the defense simply dominated an inferior Jets offense.
Jets quarterback Mark Sanchez had no answer for whatever the Dolphins defense threw at him, and even though he only threw one interception on the day, it should have been at least three more. Nolan Carroll came down with the lone pick of the day, but Sean Smith deflected 4 passes on his own, Vontae Davis had 2 breakups of his own, and Chris Clemons should have had a pick as well. To put it simply the Dolphins secondary were all around the ball today whenever Sanchez would throw the ball.
While the Jets defense may have dominated the statistical categories in terms of yardage, the Dolphins defense came away with the only stat that matters, the “W”.
Even though the defense did all it could to capture the win, it was the offense that almost gave it away yet again.
Henne did not throw an interception, but it looked like he was afraid to play the game. Sure, he tried to gun the ball down-field a couple of times, with only one panning out, but the rest of the game it looked like he was scared to make mistakes, and in turn the Dolphins offense sputtered throughout the whole game. I think that’s rather obvious just by looking at his statline for the night; 5/18 for 55 yards and a touchdown.
While some of those incompletions were drops, mostly by Marshall, Henne looked scared yet again to make mistakes and lose the game for the team, and in turn, the whole offense looked like they were playing not to lose, instead of playing to win the game.
Until this team plays to win the game, and loosens up the reigns on Henne and the offense, there will be many more close games, and many more mediocre and poor performances from Henne as our starting quarterback.
I’m not calling for Henne’s head at all, because he hasn’t even finished his second season with the team yet as our starter, but what he needs to learn is to loosen up and not be afraid to make mistakes. He’s young and one would expect improvement, but instead it seems like Henne is digressing more than he is improving at this point.
The defense will not always be able to bail the Dolphins out of the game when their offense is not playing well. They couldn’t do it last week, but they could do it this week.
It will not be every week that Cameron Wake dominates the opposing trenches. It will not be everyday that Vontae Davis shuts down his opponent, and it certainly will not be everyday that you will see Sean Smith break up four passes in a game.
The Dolphins need to get their act together on offense, and become more consistent as a team, or else do we really deserve to get into the playoffs? With an anemic offense like ours, would we survive among the league’s elite? Better yet, would deserve to be mentioned among their names? Right now I would have to say that we don’t belong with the top teams in the league. Sure, we beat the Jets, but we can’t seem to pull out the wins when it matters against some of the other top teams. Until then, and until we can show that we can perform at a high level as a whole unit, we shouldn’t be disappointed when we don’t make the playoffs.