2020 Dynasty/Fantasy Week 12 Game Analysis: Dolphins 20, Jets 3
I take notes during the live watch. I re-watch the game on tape looking for hidden clues to report on. Here are my notes/takes on what I saw and how it related to FF 2020. I write anywhere from 1,000-3,000+ words on each game, and I must move fast to get to all of them through the week…so, please forgive any typos/grammar.
Going into this game, right before kickoff, if I told you (visiting you from the future) that the Dolphins would look sloppy, sluggish on offense but the Jets would look more sloppy, more ineffective with a returning Sam Darnold…and that the Dolphins won every statistical category that mattered (time of possession, 3rd-down conversions, 1st-downs, yards, etc.) – you would not be shocked if I then told you the final score was Dolphins 20 and the Jets 3.
Well, that’s exactly what happened. No major breaking news or weird events here.
I thought this was the one game remaining where the Jets might pull an upset for their lone win of 2020, but they did not. Not even close. Actually, kinda close-ish. It was only 13-3 Miami with 20+ minutes left in the game, but anytime the Jets would start making noise – but the Miami defense would get tough and Sam Darnold would be Sam Darnold. Miami books the easy win.
Miami is now (7-4) and has everyone’s attention as a playoff team, and possible AFC East title possibility. I don’t know that they’re going to get to the playoffs. Weeks 15-16 with NE and LV will be their season, and if they run Tua out there against them they will lose both those key games and get washed from the wild card most likely. We see Miami going (9-7) with Week 16 at LV likely causing the winner to get into a wild card spot, and the loser to be out of the wild card due to tiebreakers, etc.
The Jets are looking very strong to go (0-16) now. Their last real shot at a win will be Week 16 hosting Cleveland. Whether they win a game or not…they appear to have the tiebreaker over a 1-win Jacksonville team (strength of schedule) to get Trevor Lawrence/the #1 pick. *UPDATE* The Jags actually have the SOS edge over NYJ if they end up in a tie. I'm sure Trevor is praying the Jets win a game so he can get to Jacksonville...
Fantasy Player Notes…
-- The biggest thing I saw in this game, and I went back to watch in more detail on All-22 just to watch this player isolated in the game (against a good/great cover defense) – Denzel Mims (4-67-0/8) is starting to percolate…he’s climbing the ladder a rung at a time to being the Jets’ kinda/sorta #1 WR already.
…and that’s quite a statement with Crowder-Perriman there as well.
If I were to put Mims’ NFL progress in baseball terms – he’s rounded first base and heading to second. We’re still early, and he has head winds with the QB play and team…but something is happening here.
Mims, to me, looks like the early stages of the Justin Jefferson pre-breakout. The first few weeks of the season, Jefferson was rotating in and out, getting a few targets, and the snap/touch levels inched up a bit – and then BOOM…he exploded and hasn’t looked back. Early on Jefferson was moving well, kinda low key, looked a touch unsure (as rookies do)…I wondered if he really had the mental ‘it’, the physical toughness to be a big time WR…or just be a ‘good one’.
Mims is showing similar movement skills as Jefferson pre-breakout – fast feet off the snap, gets open easily, working low key/no splash plays that really standout. But Mims, unlike Jefferson, was thrown right into heavy playing time and is getting targets his way immediately. Jefferson was a nobody at first for Minnesota the first few weeks…and then BOOM. Mims has been getting really good targets, desperate throws…like he’s considered a top option/a trusted option/a hopeful option. The numbers keep creeping up.
Mims averaged 42.0 yards (5.0 targets) per game his first two games…and 67.3 yards (and 7.7 targets) per game his next/last 3 games – that’s a 1,000+ yard seasonal pace over 16 games. He’s doing this despite not being ‘the guy’…and working with Joe Flacco and Sam Darnold.
And therein lies the rub. Mims is starting to show some signs, but he is working with Sam Darnold. That’s not good for FF purposes.
The exciting part, potentially, is – he may be working with Darnold for four more games and then never again in his Jets career. He may be working with Trevor Lawrence in 2021+, and that’s more promising.
I love the little progression I’m seeing with Mims. I like the confidence starting to grow, and the confidence of the QBs in throwing to him…and Mims made some plays in the face of Xavien Howard in this game (a top cover CB). Mims, on paper, has some Julio Jones-like physical metrics. I am a Mims fan, but I haven’t see the ‘it’ moment yet…but I feel like he’s wandering in that direction towards a ‘pop’ that he ‘gets it’ and quasi-breaks out (as much as you can with Darnold).
There’s a lot of smoke here…I am hoping an FF-fire might breakout soon.
-- Matt Breida (8-36-0, 2-17-0/2) got the start in this game. It wasn’t until the 3rd-series that DeAndre Washington (13-49-0, 2-11-0/5) entered…and he looked more aggressive, effective…and Brian Flores just went with it.
Matt Breida is so done in Miami right now. He might secretly be hurt in some way and trying to play through it, he’s looked so ‘nothing’ this season -- but his career seems to be slipping away right now.
Washington is hurt and probably won’t play this week. Salvon Ahmed is back practicing and Myles Gaskin is due to be activated…once Ahmed-Gaskin-Washington are active, I wonder if Breida (and/or Laird) will get dumped to make space for the playoff run ahead to free up a roster spot.
-- Brian Flores is inexplicable with his choice of skill position players. Whatever RB(s) he does use Week 13…it will be the most talentless backfield in the NFL.
Miami also has the most talentless WR group in the NFL, spots 1-3.
And then, if they go back to Tua (and it looks like they can’t wait to) – they will have one of the 2-3 worst QBs in the NFL running the show…along with the worst RB and WR group.
How can this team be taken seriously for the playoffs? The defense is going to have to carry them…and when they face KC Week 14, we’ll see how effective (not) that plan will be.
-- Tua might be better than Sam Darnold (16-27 for 197 yards, 0 TDs/2 INTs), eventually…not today he isn’t. Which is a sad commentary on Darnold, but even sadder for the ENTIRE football community who not only supported Darnold as good…they had him as ‘great’, a franchise/elite QB.
I wrote about the Sam Darnold issues back when he was just breaking out as a supposed star at USC. Similarly, I never saw what THEY saw about Jameis Winston even in his Heisman year. I’m not perfect in scouting QBs (but not far off of it), but if you’ve been with me over the years – you know I know QB scouting better than anyone on the planet. My track record is on file for years at College Football Metrics, and speaks for itself.
So, when I say…when my senses feel all along like there’s a problem with Tua…I’m pretty sure there is. I’ve haven’t understood the Tua appeal for years…like with Darnold or Winston. Tua is a bit better than them, but nowhere near what THEY say.
The Dolphins are WAY better off with Ryan Fitzpatrick, warts and all. But I think I know Brian Flores – you are not going to tell him he is wrong with his move to Tua. He’s going to force this to work and then lie about it/cover it up when it isn’t…telling everyone he isn’t failing/falling short because you don’t know things and he does. You’ll see.
Miami’s playoff chances lie with Tua getting hurt and them HAVING to go with Fitzpatrick.
-- Quinnen Williams (7 tackles, 1.5 sacks, 2 TFLs, 2 PDs) is starting to heat up.
3.0 sacks, 8 QB hits in his last 4 games with 4.3 tackles per game.
2.0 sacks, 2 QB hits, in his first 6 games this season.
-- Since Week 4, when they got their CB duo back together, the Miami-DST has been the #2 DST in FF scoring per game…second only to the Steelers.
How much longer do we have with this DST?
Well, Week 13 v. CIN is sweet…but then you cannot think about them for Week 14 vs. KC.
Week 15 v. NE is good. Week 16 at LV not great, but possible/useful.
-- Jason Sanders (2/2 FG, 2/2 XP) leads the league in 50+ yard FGs made…8-for-8 so far this season, which is stunning. Last season, the 50+ yard FG made leader had 8 of them made (Joey Slye). Sanders is about to take that number down.
Here’s the thing…Sanders is 6-of-6 from 50+ in just the last 4 games.
Because Miami cannot move the ball well/get into the end zone with their terrible offense…they’ll take a lot of field goals, and then try to hold opponents with their defense.
Sanders kicks at home/warm weather the next 3 games…and then in a dome Week 16. All looks great…except, I’d worry about his upside vs. KC in Week 14. Field goals aren’t going to cut it – but it may be all that Miami can muster for offense.
Snap Counts of Interest:
32 = Gore
10 = Ty Johnson
01 = Adams
54 = Perriman
52 = Mims
44 = Crowder
34 = D Washington
23 = Breida
10 = Laird