New York Jets Sam Darnold
(Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)

The New York Jets wasted a solid defensive effort in Miami, as unimaginative playcalling and four turnovers killed hope against the Dolphins.

Geoff Magliocchetti

Christmas came early for the Miami Dolphins, who earned four gifts from an otherwise very unimaginative New York Jets offense.

The Dolphins forced four turnovers, all coming from the arm of Sam Darnold, as they earned an ugly 13-6 victory over the New York Jets on Sunday afternoon at Hard Rock Stadium.

Reportedly forced to deal with a less than ideal playing surface, the teams’ respective offenses decided to equal the sloppiness. The teams combined for 15 punts and a 17 percent conversion rate (5-for-29) on third down. In the midst of the offensive debacle, the defenses took center stage.


Miami, for example, set up the first scoring of the day with a Kiko Alonso interception. To add insult to injury, Brandon Shell was called for a shove out-of-bounds after the play was over. The turnover allowed the Dolphins to kick a 43-yard field goal, courtesy of the Jason Sanders’ leg.

New York Jets

Miami also upped the pressure on Darnold, getting to the rookie quarterback three different times, with Cameron Wake earning two alone. The Jets earned some sacks of their own, bringing Osweiler down four times. Lineback Jordan Jenkins, the team’s sack leader, likewise enjoyed a two-sack day, as the Jets took advantage of an injury to tackle Ja’Wuan James.

At halftime, the Dolphins led 6-3 with Sanders and Jason Myers each adding a triple to their team’s respective tallies. The second half featured further defensive struggles, with both squads’ mediocre offenses playing simply not to make a mistake. The Jets, however, were the ones that made that crucial error, as Jerome Baker took Darnold’s second interception back for a score, one that more or less served as a backbreaker with the way the Jets’ offense was looking.

With Miami’s offense unable to put the game away, the Jets managed to creep back in thanks to a strong catch from Quincy Enunwa. Myers, who previously missed a 50-yarder, went on to set a new season-long, a 56-yard conversion again cutting the lead to a single possession.

After Miami wasted yet another possession, the Jets got the ball back, but a fourth down heave was intercepted by TJ McDonald. The Jets defense, allowers of just seven first downs on the afternoon, again forced Miami into a punt, but after some initial momentum, the Jets’ potential game-tying or winning drive was snuffed out just before midfield, as Darnold was intercepted for the fourth time, this one by Walt Aikens.

The Jets return to action next Sunday afternoon, coming home to MetLife Stadium to take on the Buffalo Bills (1:00 p.m. ET, CBS).

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