Rapid Reaction: Jets 23, Dolphins 20 (OT)
September, 23, 2012
By James Walker | ESPN.com
MIAMI -- A few thoughts on the New York Jets' 23-20 overtime victory over the Miami Dolphins.
What it means: It was an ugly game. But the Jets survived a wild one to improve to 2-1 and will have at least a share of first place in the AFC East. The Buffalo Bills also won and improved to 2-1, but New York holds the head-to-head tiebreaker. The New England Patriots (1-1) will play the Baltimore Ravens on Sunday night. Meanwhile, the Dolphins suffered a heartbreaking loss and have to pick up the pieces. Miami blocked the Jets' initial game-winning field goal attempt in overtime, but head coach Joe Philbin called a timeout. It was an awful gaffe by the rookie head coach. Dolphins kicker Dan Carpenter also missed two field goals in the game, including one in overtime that could have won it for Miami.
Sanchez struggles: Jets starting quarterback Mark Sanchez was inconsistent for the second straight game. Coming off a poor second-half performance against the Pittsburgh Steelers, Sanchez started slowly in the first half against the Dolphins. He was 8-of-19 for 77 yards and an interception at intermission. Sanchez also threw an inexcusable interception in the end zone in the third quarter. But Sanchez showed he was clutch by making a pair of late throws in the fourth quarter and overtime to win it. Sanchez connected on a 7-yard touchdown pass to Jets receiver Jeremy Kerley with three minutes left in regulation and a big 38-yard pass to Santonio Holmes to set up the game-winning field goal. Sanchez was 21-for-45 for 306 yards, one touchdown and two interceptions.
Bush injured: Dolphins tailback Reggie Bush injured his knee at the end of the first half and didn’t return. Bush was second in the NFL in rushing entering the game. Now the Dolphins have to find out how long they have to play without him. Miami has some depth behind Bush with rookie Lamar Miller and backup Daniel Thomas.
Tebow-madness: The super-secret Tim Tebow package is starting to show, but with mixed results. The good was Tebow ran a sneak on a fake fourth-down punt that resulted in a first down. But Tebow in the Wildcat and at H-back did not work out. On one play, Sanchez threw to Tebow on third down and it embarrassingly bounced off Tebow’s helmet. Tebow finished with two rushes for 0 yards.
What’s next: Miami will travel the next two weeks after playing two straight games at home. The Dolphins will play at the Arizona Cardinals and at the Cincinnati Bengals. Meanwhile, the Jets will return home for a couple of weeks to play two very good opponents. New York will host the San Francisco 49ers and Houston Texans in back-to-back games.