Jets hold off Dolphins, take control of AFC East
What went right:
1. Bend but don’t break — Chad Henne started the season 2-0 for a reason. For all the no-names and errant passers to wear blue and orange since Dan Marino, none had ever solidified the starting role like Henne had a chance to do with a win last night. "I want to be the guy who sticks," Henne said in the preseason. He had his shot. After allowing the Jets to balloon a one-point lead into eight with 1:55 left, Miami drove effortlessly down to the Jets’ 11 in just three plays. That’s where the party ended. Two incomplete passes and a weak sideline pass to Ronnie Brown, put the Fish in fourth-and-4 at the 5-yard line. Henne panicked in the pocket and forced a throw to Anthony Fasano in the front of the end zone that was picked off by Drew Coleman, sealing the Jets’ win and a 2-1 record — good enough for first place in the AFC East. Henne finished with 363 yards and two touchdowns.
2. A sobering experience — No, not Brandon Marshall’s game-high 10 receptions for 166 yards. The Jets jumped out to a 14-0 lead early and didn’t miss Braylon Edwards, who was suspended for the first quarter after being charged with a DWI early this week. Edwards, though, showed up big time in the second half. After Miami took its first lead of the game, 17-14, midway through the third quarter, Edwards caught a short pass and took it 67 yards to the house. Edwards’ two biggest plays, though, came on the Jets’ last real offensive drive late in the fourth. Up by just one, Sanchez hit him on a comeback route to convert a third-and-10, then he drew an interference penalty on third-and-goal that led to a LaDainian Tomlinson touchdown run to give the Jets a 31-23 lead. "Once he stepped in the building, he let everything outside the building go," Sanchez said of Edwards, who finished with 87 yards. "Everybody checks their baggage on the door and just focuses in."
3. A special win — In such a clean, close contest, a special teams play is often the difference and it was no different in this one. With the Jets up by just one and the crowd coming to life late in the third, Eric Smith broke through the line and blocked a punt. Brad Smith then ran for 16 yards on a third-and-15 to set up a Nick Folk field goal, giving the Jets a 24-20 lead. It was one of those spirit-breaking plays and as Smith said afterward, changes the opponents’ mind set. "There’s a big difference between needing a field goal to take the lead and needing a touchdown." The Dolphins never got the latter.