By: Chip Turner
The turkey has been eaten. Thanks have been given. Most importantly, we’ve all had the opportunity to make jokes about the Cowboys fake punt from yesterday, which was clearly drawn up by Charlie from It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia. There has been ample time to recover from the butt-whooping the Dolphins took last Sunday at the hands of the Broncos, and we can all look forward to Sunday with great anticipation.
It’s time to play the Jets.
For all of the storied battles between the Fins and the Bills in the late 80s/early 90s, and the numerous times Miami was a thorn in New England’s side during their dynasty, there’s simply nothing like a Dolphins/Jets game to bring pure revulsion to the surface. It comes down to this; Dolphins fans and Jets fans just don’t like each other.
Native South Floridians aren’t particularly fond of New Yorkers. Why is this, you ask? For one thing, a considerable number of New Yorkers move to South Florida every winter with what seems to be the sole purpose of complaining about the bagels and pizza. For another, despite the fact that said New Yorkers decided they didn’t want to be in New York any more, they will continually tell everyone how much better New York is than whatever place they’re currently located. They usually do this at the calm, measured decibel level of a commercial jet at takeoff.
I could go on, but for a far more lucid read about how much New York and Miami don’t like each other I strongly recommend Dave Barry’s classic piece, “Can New York Save Itself?”
You’ll thank me later, I promise.
Instead, it’s time to focus on the five most satisfying Miami wins in their storied rivalry.
December 20, 1992.
Pete Stoyanovich missed an extra point that would have tied the game with less than three minutes left in regulation. A young Pete Carroll, defensive coordinator for the New York Jets at that time, made a “choke” gesture at Stoyanovich. Minutes later, Stoyanovich made up for his error by jamming a game-winning field goal down Carroll’s throat as time expired.
January 1, 2012.
Jason Taylor signed with the Jets in 2010. Dolphins fans were not amused. Fortunately, life is full of redemption stories. Jason Taylor re-signed with the Dolphins in 2011 and played the final game of his career against the Jets, helping to knock them out of the playoffs.
October 19, 1975.
The Jets beat the Dolphins 8 straight times in the 60s, and apparently Miami took it personally. Once the 70s got under way, they took control of the series, and dominated the first half of the decade in the rivalry. One of those contests was an absolute beatdown of the Namath-led Jets in 1975. Namath went 8 for 33 with 6 interceptions in a 43-0 shutout.
November 24, 2009.
Let’s get one thing straight about this game: The Jets outplayed Miami for all but three plays of the game. Unfortunately for the Jets, those three plays were a Jason Taylor fumble return for a touchdown and two 100+ yard kickoff returns for a just-benched Ted Ginn. Miami wins, 30-25.
#5: “Karma Does Not Like Hot Sauce” – October 28, 2012.
Before the third game of the 2012 season, Jets head coach Rex Ryan stirred controversy when he stated that the Jets were going to put some “hot sauce” on Miami RB Reggie Bush. Both Bush and Jets CB Darelle Revis were injured during the game, with Revis being lost for the year. Bush later stated that this was karma at work, while Ryan suggested that Bush had misinterpreted his comments. Ryan never clarified what exactly he DID mean by the hot sauce comment, which makes a potential literal interpretation awkward, even by Ryan’s standards. Anyway, the Dolphins smacked the Jets around in the rematch later that year, and Ryan didn’t ever prattle on about condiments again.
#4: “I’ve seen the lights go out on Broadway” – November 24, 1986.
Billy Joel fans will recognize the above quote as a lyric from Miami 2017, a song about New Yorkers who move to Miami and complain about the bagels and pizza. Dolphin fans who can remember the 1986 season might remember as it the night the Dolphins completely derailed what looked like a Jets march toward the Super Bowl. The mighty 1986 Jets marched into a raucous Orange Bowl that Monday evening with a 10-1 record, and left on the losing end of a 45-3 lambasting. That Jets squad didn’t win another regular-season game, and lost to the Browns in the divisional playoffs. To date, this is the second-worst blowout in the history of Monday Night Football.
#3: “Was it the Chad?” – December 28, 2008.
Karma has not favored the New York Jets in this rivalry, as proven by Hot Sauce references, Pete Carroll, Sal Alosi, and Adam Gase. But this? This one everyone saw coming. In 2008, the Jets released Chad Pennington for reasons that are still unclear, and Miami pounced on him faster than my teenage son pounces on leftover Thanksgiving turkey. The Dolphins proceeded to have one of the greatest one-year turnarounds in sports history, and marched into the Meadowlands for a Week 17 showdown against Pennington’s former team. Both teams had playoff hopes, but for Pennington and the Dolphins, it was simple. Win, and you’re in. They did, and they were.
#2: “Miami Was One Tough Mudder” – January 23, 1983.
For full disclosure, this was the title of the Sports Illustrated article that covered that game. It’s also perfectly apt for the setting. The only postseason meeting between these two franchises has been well-documented, and the New York media complains about it to this day. I’m not kidding. Miami beat New York in the 1982 AFC Championship on a playing surface that was more mud pit than football field. Also true; a relative who will remain nameless apparently said, “New Yorkers are filthy animals. They should have felt right at home.”
#1: “The Fake Spike Game” – November 27, 1994.
Everyone who knows football knows what this is, and it’s #1 because it changed the history of the Jets for years. The Jets were headed for first place in the division, with an 18-point lead late in the third, and then everything just came apart for them. If you’re reading this article, you know how the game ended. Miami wins in the final seconds on a fake spike by Marino, and the Jets went into a two-year tailspin. Carroll never wins another game for the Jets, is fired after the season, and the Jets hire Rich Kotite as Head Coach. From the Fake Spike game through the end of 1996, the Jets compile a record of 4-32.
You’ll notice I left out quite a few great games that ended as Jets victories, but that’s not what this column was about. This Sunday, the Jets host Miami, and Dolphins fans hope to feast on one more Adam Gase prepared game.
Please welcome Chip Turner to PhinManiacs and please check him out on Twitter @ChipTurnerPA