MIA-JAX Grades: Jags' defense shines in win
Here are the top takeaways and highest-graded players from Sunday’s Dolphins-Jaguars game:
– Both offenses stalled in the second half, and for the Dolphins, a significant factor was the frequent pressure put on QB Ryan Tannehill (+0.4). When he wasn’t pressured, Tannehill looked much improved over his rough Week 1 performance, delivering dimes at 7:26 of the first quarter (dropped by Greg Jennings) and in the two-minute drill at 1:11 of the second. The problem was that he faced pressure often—44.7 percent of dropbacks versus 32 percent in Week 1—with a -3.3 grade and sub-50 percent completion rate on those plays.
– Week 2 brought another solid performance from WR Jarvis Landry (+3.5), who continued his hot start to the season catching eight of nine targets for 110 yards, and getting open against multiple defenders. One thing that stands out is his ability to adjust to the ball in the air, which was on display at both 13:20 of the second quarter and at 14:18 in the third quarter.
– After giving up more 4.4 yards per carry in Week 1, this was a much better effort in run defense for the Dolphins—in particular from LB Jelani Jenkins (+4.0), who rebounded nicely from a rough first quarter to end the game with a team-high seven defensive stops and a positive grade in both run defense and in coverage. Koa Misi (+2.6) also posted two stops along with three pressures as a rusher, making him our highest-graded 4-3 OLB through two games.
LB Jelani Jenkins (+4.0)
WR Jarvis Landry (+3.5)
TE Jordan Cameron (+3.1)
C Mike Pouncey (+2.8)
LB Koa Misi (+2.6)
– The Jaguar defense deserves a lot of credit for keeping Jacksonville competitive after the offense went scoreless for the majority of the second half. No player had a better game than former Dolphin Jared Odrick (+6.5) did at defensive end. What was more impressive than the volume of disruptions (five combined sacks, hits, and hurries) was the speed with which he was beating opposing blockers when he did manage to get pressure. That was evident on two of his second quarter pressures (11:33 and 0:28) and especially late in the fourth quarter when Odrick almost single-handedly stifled the Dolphins offense. At 3:02, he effortlessly handled LT Dallas Fox on his way to a sack-forced fumble before batting a pass on the next play, putting the Dolphins in third-and-long situation at their own 1-yard line.
– This was a fairly inconsistent performance from QB Blake Bortles (-1.3), who was superb against the Dolphins blitz (+2.1 raw grade and 146.7 passer rating), but battled inaccuracy at times and had a few throws that his receivers made look better. Bortles hit second year WR Allen Robinson (+2.1) for big gains in the first half, but perhaps locked onto him a bit too much after that. Miami cornerback Brent Grimes certainly appeared to catch on, reading and dropping what should have been a fairly easy interception late before halftime.
– Despite rookie RB T.J. Yeldon (+0.4) forcing four missed tackles and making some good plays on the ground, the Dolphins largely stifled Jacksonville’s run game, holding both Yeldon and Bernard Pierce (-0.1) below 2.8 yards per carry. This was the second week in a row that the team’s offseason addition at center, Stefen Wisniewski (-5.0), graded negatively in run blocking with issues against the combination of Earl Mitchell and Ndamukong Suh.
DE Jared Odrick (6.5)
WR Allen Robinson (+2.1)
S Sergio Brown (+1.9)
CB Aaron Colvin (+1.9)
DE Ryan Davis (+1.8)