On Sunday, the Miami Dolphins got an important division win but there is work to be done.
Beating the New York Jets on Sunday put the Miami Dolphins in second place in the AFC East but there is still a lot of work that needs to be done.
Although the Dolphins won convincingly on Sunday, there is still work to do after they saw a second half collapse offensively. The 24-0 victory over the Jets is the team’s second win in a row but now, it’s time to get back to the training facility and figure out what went wrong in quarters three and four.
Miami jumped out to a 21 to nothing halftime lead but could only put three points on the board in the second half. That might be good enough to beat the Jets but it is not good enough to beat teams that are far better and on the Dolphins schedule. I know, complaining about a win is really nitpicky but Miami can’t simply lay down when they have a lead. No matter how big it is.
What makes this a problem is that the Dolphins abandoned the pass for most of the 2nd half. Ryan Fitzpatrick attempted only nine passes in the 2nd half. One of them was an interception and four of them were incomplete. The Dolphins only scoring drive of the 2nd half came on a drive that featured four completions on five attempts. That resulted in a field goal.
This is not to say that the Dolphins need to run up the score but they can’t afford to fold it up so early in the game no matter how well the defense may be playing. Miami had four three and out possessions, the one interception that came on the very first pass of the drive, the FG, and Tua’s cleanup drive to end the game.
That isn’t good football no matter what they were trying to do. The Jets appeared to have made good adjustments prior to coming out for the 2nd half but in reality, Chan Gailey no longer got creative and simply sat back and tried to run the ball down the Jets throats. It didn’t work.
The Dolphins are starting to grow as a team on both sides of the ball but there is work that needs to be done and things need to be corrected, especially with what Miami is putting up in the 2nd half. Last week, the Dolphins put up 13 of their 43 points in the 2nd half and in their win against the Jaguars, most of their points, 21 of 31 were scored in the first two quarters.
Miami hasn’t been in a bad position in those three wins but they could be quickly against better teams and having the creativity to keep the ball and keep pressure off the defense will go a long way towards winning more games in the last 30 minutes.
The Dolphins are playing well right now and their schedule is favorable over the next several weeks but second half production needs to improve and that is something that Brian Flores has to work with Chan Gailey on.