Grading the Jets following Sunday’s 20-3 loss to the Dolphins.
It looked like Adam Gase took back the play-calling, but he denied that after the game. Does it really matter? Whoever was calling the plays did terribly in this one. The Jets managed just 10 first downs and 260 total yards , with 159 of those coming after the first quarter. QB Sam Darnold (16 of 27, 197 yards, 2 INTs, 51.0 rating) played terribly in his return from injury. The offensive line allowed seven quarterback hits and three sacks. RB Frank Gore (18 rushes, 74 yards) could not get a yard on a key fourth-and-1 play.
The Dolphins carved the Jets defense up early in the game and then late, gaining 345 total yards. The defense did play well in the middle and gave the Jets chances to do something with back-to-back takeaways in the third quarter that ended up leading to no points. Dolphins QB Ryan Fitzpatrick (24 of 39, 257, 2 TDs, 97.9 rating) exploited holes in the defense, picking on their young cornerbacks. DT Quinnen Williams was a bright spot with 1.5 sacks, two passes defensed, one forced fumble and three quarterback hits.
Kicker Sergio Castillo killed any momentum the Jets had before halftime when he missed a 29-yard field goal at the end of a 13-play drive. Chris Herndon was called for an illegal block on a kickoff return that put the Jets at their own 7 to start a drive in the second quarter. The Jets got nothing out of their return game but did a good job in coverage against Jakeem Grant (2 punt returns, 19 yards).
For the first time, the Jets did not look interested in playing. There was no energy around the team and the offense looked dead all day. That falls on Gase, who is nearing the end of his time with the Jets. Even at 0-11, Gase remains too conservative. He should have taken more chances and gone for it on fourth down more than he did. Defensive coordinator Gregg Williams did a good job adjusting to the Dolphins and getting his defense to play better in the second half.