New York Jets cornerback Morris Claiborne says that there will be more than just divisional bragging rights on the line in Miami on Sunday.
Morris Claiborne knows a thing or two about must-win games. If his recent words are any indication, he’s about to play another.
The New York Jets cornerback says Sunday’s game against the Miami Dolphins (1:00 p.m. ET, CBS) will carry a lot more than the weight of a divisional rivalry. Speaking with reporters after the latest loss that placed the Jets in this situation, a 24-10 defeat at the hands of the Chicago Bears, Claiborne was blunt about the Miami circumstances.
“It’s a must win,” Claiborne said, according to Matt Stypulkoski of NJ Advance Media. “By any means, we have to win this game.”
The defender may be the Jets’ resident expert in the category. A former Dallas Cowboys, Claiborne played two win-or-go-home games at the end of the 2012 and 2013 regular seasons, as well as the team’s 2016 NFC divisional playoff game against Green Bay.
“It’s urgent each and every week to win and losing is no fun,” Claiborne continued. “Losing is no good in this league. You get judged by the wins and the losses in this league and each and every game, it’s urgent to win. Period.”
According to Stypulkoski, several of Claiborne’s fellow defenders concurred. Linebacker Jordan Jenkins said a victory in South Florida could “boost morale up a good bit,” while safety Jamal Adams was a bit more conservative, calling it “another opportunity to go out there and get a win.”
After the loss, their second in a row, the Jets sit at 3-5, ranking third in the AFC East standings. In terms of playoff positioning, the New England Patriots are running away with the division crown for the umpteenth year in a row and the Jets are two games out of the AFC’s second wild card, currently locked in a four-team logjam.
“The season is not over,” head coach Todd Bowles said in a Monday afternoon conference call. “You don’t like where you are, but we dug ourselves this hole, we have to dig ourselves out.”
A win against the Dolphins would also shift some momentum in the long-standing AFC East rivalry back up north. Though they continue to lead the all-time series by a 54-51-1 tally, the Dolphins have won four of the five most recent meetings, including a 20-12 decision back on September 16, the Jets’ home opener.