More AFC East hype: Miami Dolphins defense looking playoff ready
Shutting down and shutting out the New York Jets is no great feat to brag about given that team’s ineptitude offensively but have to give the Miami Dolphins defense some respect after a 30-0 shutout win over the Jets.
There was no let down with the victory as the Dolphins increased their record to 10-4 to stay a couple games ahead of the surging Bills in the AFC east. With a gauntlet of teams coming up in the schedule, including those Bills, the Dolphins will have an opportunity to prove they can play with the big boys and establish themselves as a legit contender in the AFC.
Offensively, the Dolphins are a top-notch team, but when the offense has been shut down, the squad from South Beach has been beat around a bit. That’s where the defense needs to step up and keep their offense in games when they are struggling, or the opposing defense is simply shutting them down. Led by Bradley Chubb, who had 3 sacks on Sunday, Dolphins head coach Mike McDaniel had nothing but praise for his defense.
“I think it was really the whole team. The whole team – I can't overstate how – I don't know, it was a punch to the gut last week, and I think in a situation where it wasn't because of lack of effort or attention to detail,” McDaniel said during his press conference Sunday. “So to be able to go into a game and to have so many different question marks all week, for no one to bat an eye and for guys to go have fun playing football without the anxiety of what's induced from last week, it takes a special unit of people. I thought that Eli Apple did an awesome job, really jumping in the reins. I thought Bradley Chubb was phenomenal, obviously, but guys like Brandon Jones who had to learn the system during the year as he was recovering from a season injury last year. There's a ton of guys on defense.”
Again, it was the Jets, but the Dolphins defense was able to bounce back after that embarrassing fourth quarter letdown against the Tennessee Titans a week prior. With teams like the Dallas Cowboys, Baltimore Ravens and Bills awaiting, the defense is going to need to be up to the challenge, especially with the playoffs looming.