NY Jets 24, Miami 0

Nov. 18, 2001 at 7:20 PM
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MIAMI, Nov. 18 (UPI) -- Long interception returns for touchdowns Sunday by cornerback Aaron Glenn and safety Victor Green helped give the New York Jets their eighth straight win over the Miami Dolphins, 24-0.

The Jets improved to 7-3 and moved past Miami into a half-game lead in the AFC East.

Tormented by the Jets in recent years, Miami committed five turnovers as Jay Fiedler was intercepted three times. Two of them resulted in scores -- a 60-yard return by Glenn and a 63-yarder by Green.

"They have to start thinking after eight in a row if they can beat the Jets," Green said. "We're now 7-3 and in first place. We couldn't have imagined anything better."

"I dont know what to say, whether we're tight. But we just don't make plays (against the Jets)," Dolphins safety Brock Marion said.

Miami was shut out by the Jets for the first time in 71 games and the Dolphins suffered their first home shutout in 31 years.

The New York victory came after Miami middle linebacker Zach Thomas made some disparaging remarks about the Jets earlier in the week -- comments highlighted by Jets coach Herman Edwards in his team meetings.

But Thomas gave the Jets their due following Sunday's game.

"You've got to give the Jets credit," Thomas said. "I'm not going to attack them or attack us either. It's just one of those days. We are going to see them again because we'll be in the playoffs and they're a playoff team."

In their four-game winning streak, the Jets have allowed a total of 21 points. On Sunday, the defense scored 14 of the 24 points, forced five turnovers to raise its league-leading total to 33 and recorded three sacks.

"We felt if we could handle the run and make the quarterback throw, we could create turnovers," Edwards said. "It seems our players become hungrier for more turnovers after each individual turnover."

"We never gave ourselves a chance to win the game because of the turnovers," Dolphins coach Dave Wannstedt said. "Two of them go for touchdowns, you're not going to beat anybody."

Along with being intercepted three times, Fiedler also lost a fumble and was booed in the second half. Fiedler has been picked off 15 times, one more than his total all of last season. He was 24 of 36 for 188 yards.

"I've got two ears, I did hear them," Fiedler said of the crowd reaction. "I can't explain it (the losing streak against the Jets). I wasn't here for all eight of them."

The Jets held Miami's Lamar Smith to 53 yards on 19 carries. Linebackers Mo Lewis and Marvin Jones had nine tackles apiece and Lewis added a sack.

NFL leading rusher Curtis Martin had just 66 yards on 18 carries and Vinny Testaverde threw for only 76 yards, completing 10 of 21 passes. But one of those completions was a 17-yard touchdown to Laveranues Coles late in the second quarter, giving the Jets a 14-0 halftime lead.

"Our guys get up for this game and have been fortunate to win the last eight," Testaverde said. "We're getting our swagger back to what we had in '98. Our defense is playing fantastic. Offensively, we were just trying to manage the football game and not give them unneccesary opportunities to make plays."

The Dolphins ran 20 plays for 79 yards in the first quarter while the Jets gained 19 yards on five plays. But the Jets defense scored the only points in the quarter thanks to a juggling catch by Glenn.

Facing a second and four at the Jets' 39, Fiedler threw a short pass to his right which went off the facemask of James McKnight. As McKnight juggled the ball, Glenn hit the receiver, batted the ball away, made a juggling catch and raced down the left side, eluding Fiedler and outrunning McKnight to the end zone for a 60-yard touchdown with 3:13 left. It was the fifth interception of the season for Glenn.

Miami then drove to New York's 22, but Fiedler was sacked by defensive end John Abraham on a third and seven play and Olindo Mare missed a 42-yard field goal with 10:58 left in the second quarter. It was Mare's first miss in 14 attempts, putting more credence into the Jets' hex.

Later in the quarter, a 47-yard punt by Tom Tupa pinned the Dolphins at their own one. After failing to make a first down, Miami punted and Chad Morton returned it six yards to the Miami 35.

Two plays later, Martin rushed for 14 yards around the left side to the Miami 17. Testaverde then hit Coles, who beat rookie cornerback Jamar Fletcher for a 17-yard touchdown with 1:44 left in the half. Fletcher was filling in for injured cornerback Sam Madison, who is sidelined with a separated shoulder.

"It was a play action and it took a long time to develop," Coles said. "The offensive line gave plenty of time for Vinny to fake the ball and for me to get open."

The Dolphins reached the Jets'32 on their first possession in the third quarter. But on a fourth and one play, Fiedler rolled to his right and had his pass batted by a charging Green, who deflected the ball in the air with his left hand, caught it with both hands and raced 63 yards to the end zone with 8:15 left in the third quarter, increasing New York's lead to 21-0.

"We knew they would try some type of rollout," Edwards said. "Victor was in the flat and had his man covered. The quarterback pulled up and tried to loft the ball over Victor. That was a heckuva interception, batting the ball and catching it for the touchdown."

"I knew it was a fourth and one and I didn't see a chance to get it by running," Fiedler said. "Victor Green just made a great play. If I got it three inches higher, maybe it's complete."

Safety Damien Robinson had New York's third interception of the game in the fourth quarter and John Hall kicked a 43-yard field goal for the Jets after nickel back Ray Mickens recovered a fumble at the Miami 32.

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