EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. (AP) — Joe Philbin reminded his Miami Dolphins to forget all the trash talk and shut the New York Jets up on the field. Boy, did they listen to their coach.
Matt Moore threw a touchdown pass after stepping in for the injured Ryan Tannehill and the Dolphins didn't miss a beat, rolling past the New York Jets 30-9 Sunday for their third straight victory.
“We all had a job to do,” Philbin said. “We didn't want to turn it into a personal affair. It was a big game and it came at a good time, coming off the bye, a divisional game on the road.”
And it kept the surging Dolphins a half-game behind the AFC East-leading New England Patriots. The Jets dropped to last in the division and headed into their bye-week break with lots of uncertainty.
“To say I never saw this coming is an understatement,” coach Rex Ryan said. “This one, no question, is a tough one to accept.”
The Jets couldn't get going even with Miami needing to turn to its backup quarterback after Tannehill injured his left knee and quadriceps muscle on a sack by Calvin Pace on the Dolphins' second possession.
Moore filled in nicely, finishing 11 of 19 for 131 yards after Tannehill was 2 of 5 for 18 yards.
“It feels good to do no more talking and feels even better to back it up,” Moore said. “Our special teams put us in great situation to win this but we were ready as soon as we stepped off the bus.”
It showed, as Miami raced to a 20-0 lead by midway through the second quarter and New York couldn't recover.
Ryan said the Jets would “empty our tanks” as they tried to sweep the Dolphins for the first time in his four seasons as coach. But Jets quarterback Mark Sanchez made mistakes throughout, not hitting open receivers at times and not taking care of the football.
He was 28 of 54 for 283 yards with a touchdown and interception and was done in late in the opening quarter by a fumble on a sack by Nolan Carroll that the Dolphins turned into a touchdown.
Sanchez had the Jets driving while trailing 27-3 in the third quarter but Chris Clemons intercepted a throw intended for Dustin Keller. That brought out loud boos and some chants for Tim Tebow, the Jets backup QB, by the angry crowd at MetLife Stadium, which had a few thousand empty seats, more than likely because of the threats of the approaching Hurricane Sandy.
Ryan said he had no thoughts of switching to Tebow, who had one carry for 2 yards in limited action again.
The Dolphins, with a record of 4-3, get set to play the Indianapolis Colts at 1 p.m. Sunday at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis.