Even though their star starting quarterback went down with an injury, the Miami Dolphins proved they were much more than just Ryan Tannehill on Sunday, riding their special teams and defense to an easy 30-9 win over the New York Jets.
After Jets defensive tackle Calvin Pace sacked Tannehill on the Dolphins' second series of the game, Tannehill limped to the sideline and collapsed. Trainers worked on the eighth-overall pick's left quad muscle and knee, but the rookie from Texas A&M would not return to the game.
Without Tannehill at the helm, backup Matt Moore steered the Dolphins offense for the rest of the game, but he didn't need to do much thanks to the strong efforts from the Miami defense and special teams. Moore finished the day 11-for-19, passing for 131 yards and a touchdown.
Miami blocked a punt (and returned it for a touchdown) and blocked a field goal as the Dolphins jumped out to a 20-0 lead at the break, continually breaking the Jets' offense while Mark Sanchez threw a season-high 54 pass attempts. The Jets fans were particularly displeased with the offense's struggles to break into the end zone, breaking into loud boos and "Tebow" chants throughout the day.
The dominant team win for the Dolphins now has those in Miami thinking that the playoffs might be in reach, while the embarrassing loss now sends the Jets into their bye week with serious questions about the coaching, offense, defense and special teams.
The 3-4 Jets now head into their bye week while the 4-3 Dolphins travel to Indianapolis.
Fantasy studs: The Dolphins' defense and special teams had a great day, blocking a punt, recovering it for a touchdown and blocking a field goal. Dolphins kicker Dan Carpenter also had a nice day, connecting on three field goals and making three extra points.
Fantasy duds: Pretty much everybody else. No Jet or Dolphin had a particularly great day.
Did they cover?: The Jets were two-and-a-half point favorites. They did not cover.
The Jets finally got onto the scoreboard in the third quarter at MetLife Stadium, but the New York boos were more bountiful than the points as the Dolphins stretched their lead to 27-3.
Nick Folk connected on a 38-yard field goal on the Jets' first drive after the break, but the Dolphins promptly answered with a touchdown of their own when Matt Moore connected with Anthony Fasano for a 4-yard score that made it 27-3.
On the Dolphins' next series, Reggie Bush coughed up a fumble that put the Jets on the Miami 32-yard line, but Mark Sanchez launched an interception five plays later that brought down a flurry of loud catcalls and "Tebows" from the fans in green and white -- and all but ended the Jets' hopes for a comeback victory.
While the New York offense has been the subject of much ire today, the Jets have out-gained the Dolphins offensively, with 218 yards to Miami's 209.
Even without their starting quarterback, the Dolphins continued to dominate the Jets in the second quarter and carried a 20-0 lead into the break.
After Miami rookie quarterback Ryan Tannehill left the game with a left leg injury, the Dolphins added another touchdown and a field goal to double their first-quarter lead.
Dolphins running back Daniel Thomas found the end zone and Dan Carpenter connected on another field goal while the New York offense sputtered time and again. Miami held New York to under 40 total yards for most of the first half, but the Jets finally found some offensive success on their last drive of the half.
A 70-yard drive right before the break almost tripled New York's yardage total and set up a Nick Folk field goal attempt, but the Jets were kept off the scoreboard due to another good effort from the Dolphins' special teams. Miami rookie Olivier Vernon, who recovered a blocked punt for Miami's first touchdown, blocked Folk's kick and kept the New York boos raining down on Rex Ryan and company.
The Miami Dolphins defense and special teams ruled the first quarter in New York, blocking a punt, grabbing an onside kick and forcing a Mark Sanchez fumble on their way to an early 10-0 lead, but the main story was a left leg injury to quarterback Ryan Tannehill.
Tannehill was sacked by Jets defensive tackle Calvin Pace on Miami's second series of the game and was unable to put pressure on his left leg when walking to the sideline. The rookie collapsed on the Dolphins' sideline and trainers were monitoring his left quad muscle and left knee. His return to the game is questionable, and backup Matt Moore has stayed in the game for the Dolphins.
Aside from Tannehill's injury, Dan Carpenter nailed a 33-yard field goal on the Dolphins' first series and that blocked punt resulted in a touchdown to give Miami the lead. Jimmy Wilson dashed past none other than Tim Tebow to block Robert Malone's punt, and the ball was recovered in the end zone by Olivier Vernon.
Dolphins quarterback Ryan Tannehill injured his left leg on Miami's second series against the New York Jets and left the game. His return to the game is questionable.
After being sacked on third down by the Jets' Calvin Pace, Tannehill came up, but was unable to put any pressure on his left leg. He limped to the Dolphins' sideline and collapsed.
Dolphins trainers were working on Tannehill's left leg and stretching his quad muscle. The rookie quarterback then rode the stationary bicycle for a short time.
Miami backup Matt Moore came into the game on the Dolphins' next series and has stayed in the game.
Tannehill, the eighth-overall pick in the 2012 NFL draft out of Texas A&M, has impressed Dolphins fans and pundits so far this season by passing for over 1,400 yards and leading the Dolphins to a 3-3 record.
The Dolphins and Jets are scoreless after the first quarter in New York.
Marshall started four games for the Dolphins this season and has recorded four tackles. He did not participate in practice all week leading up to the game versus the New York Jets.
Kaddu has only played in one game this season for the Dolphins and will sit again on Sunday. Offensive lineman Will Yeatman is also inactive and has yet to make his debut this season after playing three games for the Dolphins in 2011.