Pregame Observations: Jets Edition

Tony Sparano has a perfect 3-0 road record against the Jets during his time as Dolphins head coach, and those victories were recorded mostly on the strength of great defense and great special teams. Somehow, we get the feeling the Dolphins will need a major contribution from the offense on Monday night if they hope to make it four in a row.

• Clearly, the focus will be on quarterback Matt Moore, who will be making his first start in a Dolphins uniform. What can you expect from Moore? The reasonable guess is probably a lot of the same things we saw from Chad Henne — some good throws, some inconsistency — but perhaps more of a take-charge attitude.

• One place where the Dolphins need for Moore to be better than Henne was is in the red zone, where the Dolphins have struggled all season.

• And that brings us to Brandon Marshall, who also figures to get a lot of attention because of the comments he made last Thursday. Nobody really expects Marshall to deliver on his vow to get kicked out in the second quarter, but one would expect to see him play with a lot of emotion and to react when he makes a catch. The key now is for Moore to get Marshall the ball and for Marshall to make the tough catches.

• The Jets haven't made it a practice to put all-world cornerback Darrelle Revis on Marshall, but if it happens, Marshall has a clear physical advantage because of his size. If they are matched up, Marshall needs to use his body to block out Revis and outfight him for balls.

• Another player in the spotlight Monday night will be Jason Taylor, who returns to New York and figures to get his share of boos from the Jets crowd. Taylor has been awfully quiet this season and tonight would be a great time to start making some plays. Then again, Taylor probably has been used more than he should be at this stage of his career.

• The one Jets offensive player we would be concerned about heading into the game is tight end Dustin Keller. The Dolphins have had problems with tight ends this year — think Rob Gronkowski, Owen Daniels, Randy McMichael — and Keller has had big games against Miami before.

• The Jets have struggled on offense in recent weeks — and defense, for that matter — but we must remember that New York's three losses all came on the road. And against good teams. The Jets lost at Oakland, at Baltimore and at New England. Those teams are a combined 13-4.

• Punter Brandon Fields had an unbelievable game at this stadium last year. He can't do the same thing again, can he? The guy actually probably has been the Dolphins' best player all season.

• Lastly, is this the night the Dolphins step up and make plays instead of watching their opponent do it?


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