JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- The Jacksonville Jaguars' faith in Jason Myers paid off in a big way Sunday.
Myers, an undrafted rookie kicker from tiny Marist College whom the Jaguars elected to go with instead of veteran Josh Scobee this year, showed the Jaguars they made a wise move. He calmly converted his third field goal of the game, a 28-yarder with 40 seconds left in the game, to send the Jaguars to a 23-20 win over the Miami Dolphins Sunday at EverBank Field.
Myers had earlier made good on kicks from 27 and 58 yards out. While the last one was no more than a chip shot, it was particularly important. The Jaguars' offense had stalled the entire second half until they drove down to the 9-yard line with 40 seconds remaining.
"I always have confidence in my kicking and I believe in myself," Myers said. "I was actually more nervous about the opening kickoff than I was that last field goal. The guys have been great in supporting me since Day 1. I just went out there, kept my head down and did my job.
"And I really liked kicking that 58-yarder. I hit it good and the wind may have pushed it a little too. That was nice to see from that distance."
The Jaguars set the stage for Myers' heroics by putting together a nine-play march in just 68 seconds, going from their own 24-yard line to just inside the Dolphins 10-yard line. Quarterback Blake Bortles completed three of five passes in the drive, including 18- and 19-yard completions to wide receivers Marqise Lee and Allen Hurns, respectively.
The biggest play of the drive came following a 6-yard run by running back T.J. Yeldon to the Dolphins' 34. Linebacker Olivier Vernon shoved Jaguars tight end Clay Harbor to the ground after the play and was hit with a personal foul. That gave the Jaguars a first down at the 19-yard line with just under a minute left in the game.
Three running plays netted 9 yards, which brought on Myers, who had missed a 42-yard field goal last week against Carolina. But he drilled this one through the uprights for the win.
"It was just a dumb play by me, that was it, we lost," Vernon said. "It's over with man, they played better ball than us. I take full responsibilities for my actions, on to the next week."
Miami completed one pass for 9 yards following the kickoff, but quarterback Ryan Tannehill then threw three straight incompletions to give the Jaguars their first win over Miami in their last four meetings.
After connecting on seven of his first 11 passes through the first quarter and a half, Tannehill got hot and completed 12 of his next 13 throws for 191 yards. He was especially effective to start the third quarter when he hit five straight completions for 86 yards, the last of which was a 5-yard TD toss to tight end Jake Stoneburner to tie the game 20-20.
Tannehill cooled off after his hot start to open the second half. But he still finished completing 30 of 44 passes for 359 yards and the two touchdowns. His quarterback rating was 108.0.
"We're a team. We prepare as a team and always have confidence the other side is going to make a play," the Dolphins quarterback said. "Even on that last drive, I had faith someone was going to step up and make the big play. You ride together, you die together, that's kind of the mentality we have."
Neither team could mount a drive after that, however, as the teams traded punts for the next 10 possessions. The six straight series in which the Jaguars defense forced the Dolphins into five punts and a change of possession on a fourth-down stop in the second half was especially pleasing to Jaguars coach Gus Bradley.
Jacksonville only allowed the Dolphins to cross midfield once in their last six possessions, and that was only to the Jaguars' 38-yard line.
"I thought our guys gave it their all," Bradley said. "Just sitting there talking to them in the locker room, a lot of guys are worn out in there. I give credit to our guys; they played their tails off from start to finish. Some of the things we challenged our teams with last week, I loved the way they responded this week and battled and came out. So many stories; our receiving group came back and really played well after what took place last week. There are some mistakes out there we need to correct but overall the intensity and how we played the game I'm very pleased."
Jacksonville scored on its opening drive, marching 82 yards in 10 plays with Bortles connecting with wide receiver Allen Robinson on a 3-yard touchdown for the score.
Miami could have trailed by one at intermission but Andrew Franks missed a 42-yard field goal with 18 seconds left in the half.
NOTES: Jacksonville's touchdown on its opening drive was the first of its kind for the Jaguars since Week 10 last year when they scored on their initial possession against Dallas in a game played in London. ... Sunday's game marked the third straight year that Miami has played in Jacksonville. The Dolphins played a preseason game here in 2013 and won at EverBank Field in a regular-season contest in 2014. ... The Jaguars scored 10 points in both the first and second quarters, the first time since 2012 that Jacksonville had put together back-to-back quarters of 10 points or more. ... Jaguars DE Jared Odrick has played in 66 consecutive games dating back to 2011. All but the two this season were with the Dolphins, with whom Odrick played his first five years in the league.