LONDON, ENGLAND - They say football is measured in quarters. After the first quarter of the season the Jets are 3-1 and while they have been far from perfect fans have to be encouraged with what we've seen through the first four weeks of the season.
The travel and time zone difference didn't appear to impact the Jets, at all. From the very first play, of the very first offensive drive, the Jets dominated the Dolphins. The Jets allowed the Dolphins to make the game closer than it should have been but like a sideview mirror objects may appear closer than they are.
On their first offensive Ryan Fitzpatrick and Brandon Marshall got the Jets started with a beautiful 58 yard pass. Two Chris Ivory runs (the first for 12 yards, the second for a three yard touchdown) later and the Jets had a 7-0 lead and they would never look back. Fitzpatrick had an up-and-down performance, missing several first half throws, but gave the Jets more good than bad as he went 16-29 for 218 yards (Marshall caught seven of those passes for 128 yards) with one touchdown and an interception. But the offensive MVP was Ivory as he ran all over the Dolphins for a career-high 166 yards on 29 carries (5.72 yards per carry).
On defense the Jets were able to stuff the Dolphins running game, smother their receivers and constantly apply pressure on Ryan Tannehill (who went 19-44 for 198 yards, two touchdowns and two interceptions). The Jets sacked Tannehill three times for a loss of 31 yards and the MVP of the defense was Buster Skrine as he seemed to blitz, and force Tannehill to throw errant passes, 74 times and still managed to break up several passes when he dropped back in coverage.
The Jets outgained the Dolphins, 425 total yards to 226, 218 passing yards to 167 and 207 rushing yards to a downright lousy 59 by the Dolphins. The Jets ran 72 total plays to the Dolphins 58, had 23 first downs to the Dolphins 17, outgained the Dolphins by two yards per play (5.9 for the Jets and 3.9 for the Dolphins) and won the time of possession 37:23 to 22:37.
All that doesn't even come close to showing how dominate the Jets were as the Dolphins were able to get a touchdown and 126 of those yards in the fourth quarter with the game already out of reach. The stat for that would be the fact that the Jets were penalized 14 times for a total of 163 yards, that's just 63 yards less the Dolphins offense gained in total yards. The Jets were able to survive all the penalties this week but Todd Bowles will be sure to make this an area of emphasis during the bye week.
The only other area the Jets struggled in was in the kick and punt return game, after giving up a backbreaking punt return for a touchdown to Darren Sproles last week, the Jets allowed Jarvis Landry to gain 67 yards on three punt returns (22.3 yards per return).
Last week the Jets continually shot themselves in the foot and suffered their first loss of the season because of it, this week the Jets played so well that they were easily able to overcome all their mistakes. The Jets now get a week to rest, with a bye coming up, before playing Washington at home, at the Patriots, at the Raiders and home for Jacksonville for the second quarter of the season and suddenly a record of 6-2 through the first half of the season seems well within the Jets reach.
INJURY NEWS AND NOTES:
Leonard Williams suffered an ankle sprain, Calvin Pryor suffered a bone bruise/contusion and David Harris left the game with a quad injury but Bowles told reporters after the game that Harris "should be okay."
As good as the Jets defense has been this season, and it's been incredibly strong as the two turnovers they forced today gives them 13 on the season matching last year's season total, they should only get better as Sheldon Richardson is set to rejoin the team when they play Washington.
Chris Nimbley is the Editor-in-Chief of Jetsinsider.com/Scout.com. He can be reached on Twitter (@cnimbley), or via email (firstname.lastname@example.org)