Mostert, Tagovailoa lead Dolphins to rout of Jets without Hill
MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. (AP) — Mike McDaniel was certain his team would avoid another week of disappointment after the Dolphins saw a 14-point fourth-quarter lead fizzle in less than five minutes in their last outing.
Last Monday's collapse against the Tennessee Titans was a “punch to the gut,” McDaniel said Sunday. He expected the Dolphins to respond in a huge way — and they did, blowing out the New York Jets for the second time in just over three weeks.
Raheem Mostert scored two more touchdowns to set Miami's single-season record with 20, Tua Tagovailoa threw for 224 yards and a score and the Dolphins shut out the Jets 30-0 on Sunday without star receiver Tyreek Hill.
“You can’t do anything about the past, and the future doesn’t exist," McDaniel said. "They really leaned into the day each and every day this week, and I was very proud, as proud as I’ve been of any performance from this team since I’ve been here.”
Mostert walked into the end zone untouched on a 2-yard run that put AFC East-leading Miami (10-4) ahead 7-0 and gave the ninth-year running back his 17th rushing touchdown of the season — one more than Ricky Williams, who set the record in 2002. The score was also Mostert's 19th overall, which broke the team record of 18 set by Mark Clayton in 1984.
Mostert said it felt great to break both records, but he wasn't satisfied with his overall performance.
“I felt like I didn't help my team enough in the run game,” said Mostert, who had 42 yards on 15 carries. “It's just a standard that I set for myself.”
A week after Zach Wilson threw for over 300 yards against Houston, the Jets' third-year quarterback’s day was cut short when he left late in the second quarter with a concussion. New York (5-9) had just 103 total yards of offense and was shut out for the first time since losing 26-0 at Denver in Week 3 of the 2021 season.
The loss, combined with wins by Houston and Cleveland, eliminated the Jets from playoff contention for the 13th straight season — and severely lessened the chances of Aaron Rodgers returning this season from a torn Achilles tendon. Rodgers has said one of the conditions of his comeback would be New York remaining in contention.
“It’s disappointing,” Jets coach Robert Saleh said. “Starting from the first series of the year all the way to now, it’s just been a constant battle. I do appreciate the heck out of our guys. We still got three games left to finish strong.”
Hill, who entered Week 15 as the NFL's leading receiver, missed the first game of his Dolphins tenure after injuring his left ankle against the Titans.
His absence made room for a standout game from Waddle, who had a season-high 142 yards on eight catches.
Waddle got behind Jets cornerback D.J. Reed for a 60-yard touchdown catch from Tagovailoa in the second quarter that put the Dolphins ahead 17-0. Mostert then gave the Dolphins a 24-point halftime lead with his second touchdown of the day, a 1-yard score in which he was again untouched.
“When a guy like Tyreek’s out, it’s not just one player that has to step up," Waddle said. "It’s the whole unit when you have a Hall of Fame guy like Cheetah missing.”
Wilson spent much of his afternoon running from a domineering Miami defensive front that sacked him four times, one of which resulted in a fumble that gave the Dolphins the ball at the Jets 1 and led to Mostert's first score.
Despite missing several defensive starters, the Dolphins limited the Jets to just 4 yards in the first half, the fewest yards allowed in the first half of a game since Dec. 13, 2015, when Denver limited the Raiders to minus-12 yards in the first half.
Miami's high-priced edge rusher Bradley Chubb had his best game since being traded to the Dolphins last November with seven combined tackles and two strip-sacks (three sacks total).
Chubb also had three quarterback hits, two tackles for loss and a fumble recovery for Miami's No. 9-ranked defense. He leads the NFL with six forced fumbles.
“I was thinking of how we were on the field last (game) and didn't get the job done,” Chubb said. “My main thing is just trying to better this defense in whatever way I can.”
Jets: DL Quinton Jefferson left with a hip injury and didn't return. ... S Tony Adams left to be evaluated for a head injury, but was later cleared to return. ... DL John Franklin Meyers injured his hip in the first half and did not return.
Dolphins: Waddle left briefly after hurting his chest on a catch on the first series, but returned shortly later. ... RT Austin Jackson injured his oblique in the second quarter (oblique) in the second quarter and didn't return. ... LB Emmanuel Ogbah left with a hamstring injury.
Jets: Host Washington next Sunday.
Dolphins: Host Dallas next Sunday.
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