Game Overview ::
By Hilow >>
- After dropping five consecutive contests, the Dolphins cling to hope for the final spot in the playoffs out of the AFC – they need to beat the Jets and have the Bills beat the Patriots.
- Skylar Thompson has been named the starter for the Dolphins, with Teddy Bridgewater set to serve as the backup if he makes it back from injury – it’s a similar situation to the one we saw earlier in the year against the Vikings, where McDaniel did the same thing, only to see Thompson go down with an injury early in the game.
- Skylar Thompson came on in relief of Bridgewater after just one series against these same Jets back in Week 5, attempting 33 passes in a game where the Jets blew the Dolphins out 40-17.
- Week 18 marks the return of Joe Flacco as the starting quarterback for the New York Jets.
- Garrett Wilson saw a combined 33 targets over the first three games of the season (while Flacco was starting), with a high snap rate of just 63% during that span – he is now playing 100% of the offensive snaps for the Jets.
How New York Will Try To Win ::
The Jets have been at or below league average in pass rate over expectation in all but three games this season. That said, and even though their defense has allowed the fourth fewest points per game this season, an inability to sustain drives on offense has led to the team attempting 37.1 passes per game this year – a number that increases to a laughably high 50.33 in Mike White or Joe Flacco starts (a sample size of six games this season). Joe Flacco makes his not-so-triumphant return as the starting quarterback after he watched as the team cycled through three other starters, having attempted 155 passes across his three starts this season. While we can’t simply pencil in Flacco for 50 pass attempts here, we can safely assume that the team will lean into the pass in the right game environments, and a game against a divisional rival could be one of those spots. Furthering that potential is the state of the backfield, which lost standout rookie Breece Hall earlier in the season.
Michael Carter, Zonovan Knight, and Ty Johnson have been splitting time in the backfield since Hall went down with an injury, with none of the lot exceedingly likely to surpass a modest 50% snap rate. What we do know is that Knight has been utilized as the primary early-down rusher, Johnson as the primary change of pace back, and Carter as a demi-change of pace/passing down hybrid. That leaves very little room for one of the bunch to emerge as a viable fantasy option, particularly considering the difficult matchup on the ground. The pure rushing matchup yields a laughably low 3.955 net-adjusted line yards metric against a Dolphins defense holding opponents to just 3.81 yards per carry this season.
Things get interesting through the air for a combination of reasons. First off is the robust pass volume numbers previously mentioned that have come in Mike White or Joe Flacco starts this year. Second is the matchup with a Dolphins defense that is clearly a pass funnel. Lastly, and this one might be the most important, both offensive tackles for the Jets have yet to practice this week with various ailments, which would likely lead to a heavier reliance on short-area pass game work. That last bit is extremely important, as it is likely to fundamentally alter the way in which the Jets can move the ball through the air, denting the fantasy upside to deeper aDOT players like Corey Davis and boosting the expectations of Garrett Wilson and Ty Conklin. Furthermore, Garrett Wilson saw a combined 33 targets during Flacco’s three starts earlier in the season, all while playing no more than 63% of the offensive snaps in any one game – the electric rookie is now playing every snap for the Jets.