NFL / new york jets
Dolphins vs Jets NFL Preview : it's time to get serious
Key game in AFC East between Jets and Dolphins, two not very brilliant and unconvincing teams for a challenge worth the playoffs. The month of November arrives, a period in which, without ifs and buts, the teams competing in the NFL must make sense of the month of December, and therefore of their entire season. Mind you, it does not mean that all the deductibles will compete for a postseason position, there are already teams that are out of it and have already started to do unscrupulous tanking, to earn as many selections as possible in the next draft and the highest possible choice: the Oakland Raiders are doing nothing to mask this - questionable, at least - their choice - questionable, at least, too - head coach Jon Gruden and probably even the New York Giants will take this path , from today to a few weeks, to be able to select their future QB in April. Other teams, more or less openly, will have nothing to compete for in December if not draft selections. Image Source Although not very exciting, the draft position is still something to fight for, and it may already be a better situation than the one in which they run the risk of being in Miami Dolphins in a month. Because the team is currently 4 - 4, with a record of .500 split, quite useless in this league, because it does not allow access to the playoff (less than a year like the one we are following, in which in the AFC there squadrons and squares, and there is little room for mediocrity) nor a prestigious position in the draft, one of the first 10 picks, those in which - usually - we share the future champions. If you were to finish November with the same record, 6 wins and 6 losses, in December you would play only for the statistics and to defend your job. That's why it's time to show the attributes, starting on Sunday. Image Source Opponents of a hundred battles The game of week 9 on the calendar at Hard Rock Stadium on Sunday afternoon (evening in Italy) is one of those matches that in America call win or go home because they will come to visit the New York Jets. Division's opponents are a game behind the Fins, with a record of 3 - 5, very far from the playoffs, but could catch the Miami team and hook it in - almost impossible, as usual - chasing the Patriots. It will be the one hundred and sixth occasion in which the two franchises will meet, in a matchup full of history and stories: from the 1982 Championship Game, when a defense lord like the LB with the number 77, Adam Joseph Duhe, intercepted 3 times, in the same game, Richard Todd, QB Jets of the time, unable to score a single point under a torrential downpour, on a date that still remembers today as one of the most memorable games of the aqua and orange defense; at the terrible afternoon of December 7, 1987, when the DT of New York Marty Lyons, in a contrast that - by his own admission - regrets forever, put an end to the almost certain career of Hall Of Fame by Dwight Stephenson, C of Miami, in a cursed mid-fourth quarter game, he was forced to abandon his dream of playing in the NFL for as long as 30 years; up again, coming back, to the most legendary of the legendary league seasons, that of 1972 in which the invincible 'Fins of the time were imposed for 28 to 24 on the fierce Jets who were playing masterfully all'Orange Bowl, mythical temple of the undefeated season, 46 years ago. Nobody in the history of this league has managed to match that result, to win all the regular season games and all those of the playoffs, including Super Bowl. It's much more difficult to do that today than the season games are 16 and not 14, and I doubt Los Angeles Rams can do it this year. Those Dolphins included among their own rows of superstars like Bob Griese, Larry Csonka and Mercury Morris, players always preceded by their reputation. We Miami fans are quite nostalgic, inevitably, of that period and we talk about it whenever the opportunity arises, but it's time to go back to the 2018 season and take a look at the conditions of the two challengers. Image Souce An opaque present for a bright future The Jets are not a particularly ambitious team for this year. They know very well that their size is that of a team in progress, which is laying the foundation for their future. Future that, in all likelihood, will not see the current head coach Todd Bowles at the helm, but will certainly turn around the QB Sam Darnold, freshman who showed good things at the beginning of the season, but seems to have a little off lately, having always appeared unconvincing in recent weeks. To be incisive, Darnold will need the maximum possible support from his most dangerous offensive comrades, Robby Anderson, Quincy Enunwa and Jermaine Kearse, concrete receivers albeit not phenomenal, and his backfield composed of Isaiah Crowell and Bilal Powell, dynamic duo able to play good games. Of course, by this time the biggest hand could give it home defense. In defense The Jets can boast names like Jamal Adams (S) and Brandon Copeland (LB), charismatic members of a compact unit, but not elité. Bowles is a defensive minded coach, who knows the Dolphins well as he meets them twice a year and has already challenged Adam Gase, Miami's chief coach and coordinator offensive several times. It is to be expected that the helmsman of New York has prepared something to answer the trick plays that the coach of the hosts will surely be preparing in the same minutes. The conditions of the Dolphins Miami does not come to the best of this challenge, back from 4 losses in the last 5 games and with an infirmary that shows no sign of emptying, the team looks like a distant relative of that funny and sometimes brilliant team that started the season with 3 consecutive victories . Gase and his staff have prepared countermoves to respond to the emergency injuries, reactivating the LB Mike Hull from the list of injured reserves (IR) and signing a contract with Ziggy Hood and Sylvester Williams, two defensive tackles. The receiver Kenny Stills, one of the best for Miami this season, should be able to take the field. However, it is not certain to face it since it was not very easy during the week. DeVante Parker appeared in good condition last Thursday, WR appeared on the starting foot but was not traded by October 30th, date of the trade deadline and last chance to sell players from one team to another. Good signs are also expected from the two RBs Kenyan Drake and Frank Gore, as well as some appearances by Kalen Ballage, the third running back of the team that has played little, but it looks really promising in training. To coordinate these players there will still be, for the fourth consecutive week, Brock Osweiler, since Tannehill's shoulder soap opera is still underway. The reserve QB did not play these games badly, but it did not even look awesome, and it's a step back from Tannehill, in my opinion, due to the lack of mobility that characterizes it. The attack will have to show a good harmony but the most difficult task is on the shoulders of the defense. The unit must react and must do it quickly, because names like Cam Wake and Robert Quinn expect sack, from Reshad Jones and Xavien Howard intercept and from Kiko Alonso precise and effective contrasts. In the last two games, all these things have been missed and the team has been defeated. These defenders are the hard core of the Dolphins, and above all they are the ones that the attributes must take out of them. Some good play could give it to the special team, with a return from numerous yards of Jakeem Grant and a few long points from Matt Haack. What we want to see on Sunday is the character of this team. Sunday we have to show who we are, on Sunday we have to throw our hearts over the obstacle, on Sunday we must return to the victory column or we really run the risk of slipping the season through our fingers, after a great start. Sunday is the right day to desert happy hour with friends or send the girl to the mall alone, because there is a delicate challenge between Dolphins and Jets, a divisional game that is worth double, and will serve the maximum possible support to boys. Force Dolphins.