With a "frankenstorm" headed toward New York City, there will be an even bigger storm brewing if the New York Jets cannot defeat the Miami Dolphins at MetLife Stadium this afternoon, which would drop them to 3-5 and further out of the playoff picture heading into a Week 9 bye.
But the likelihood of high winds and steady rain could bring about a reduction in the Jets' passing attack, thus giving way to what could be labeled Hurricane Tebow.
[Related: Jets have no plans to trade Tebow]
Jets head coach Rex Ryan indicated that the team was aware of the possibility of bad weather and that they would adjust their game plan accordingly. That could mean an increased role for Tim Tebow, who, through seven games, has yet to be a factor at all in the Jets offense, despite cries and pleas from Jets fans, Gator fans and fans of Christianity across the nation.
That is just one of the many storylines heading into this AFC East battle at 1 pm.
AGONY OF THE FEET LAST WEEK
Last week, the Jets played well enough to win the game, but after they scored 13-straight points in the fourth quarter, including a Nick Folk go-ahead field goal late in the game, Tom Brady marched the New England Patriots down the field and Stephen Gostkowski sent the game into overtime with a field goal. He then kicked a go-ahead field goal on the first possession of OT, and on the ensuing possession, Mark Sanchez was sacked and stripped of the football, which was recovered by the Patriots, ending the game.
It was a heartbreaking way to end a game, and it was even more painful because it happened against Bill Belichik and the rival Patriots.
WHAT TO WATCH FOR
The Dolphins come into the game on a two-game winning streak, but have only scored 17 points in the each of the two victories. The Jets, coming off the overtime loss in New England, faced questions all week about the team's use of Tebow, questionable play calling and the need to win this game in order to stay in the division and conference playoff race.
In the first meeting between the teams, Week 3 in Miami, the Jets were victorious 23-20 in overtime. Mark Sanchez threw for more than 300 yards, but Shonn Greene was limited to just 40 yards on the ground. Statistically, the Dolphins rank among the worst in the NFL against the pass but among the best versus the run, but with the threat of poor weather, throwing the ball all over the field just might not be possible.
Miami's rookie quarterback Ryan Tannehill has improved as the season has progressed — LaRon Landry had a pick-6 in Week 3 — but, like with Sanchez, the weather might necessitate a lot more running the football, taking away the advantage the Jets have against Tannehill.
Receiver Brian Hartline was limited to one catch by Jets cornerback Antonio Cromartie in Week 3, but it was a 41-yard reception that could have cost the Jets the game. Expect an even more focused Cromartie in this game.
STATE OF NEW YORK
Linebacker Bart Scott is not expected to play, ending his consecutive games streak at 119 games. Center Nick Mangold, running back Joe McKnight,TE Jeff Cumberland, defensive tackle Sione Po'uha and safety Eric Smith are listed as questionable.
Jets: Sanchez (1,453 yards, 9 TDs, 7 INTs)
Dolphins: Tannehill (1,454 yards, 4 TDs, 6 INTs)
Jets: Greene (124 carries for 432 yards, 5 TDs)
Dolphins: Bush (98 carries for 434 yards, 3 TDs)
Jets: Kerley (25 catches for 435 yards, 2 TDs)
Dolphins: Hartline (29 catches for 519 yards, 1 TD)
Jets: Harris (57 tackles)
Dolphins: Dansby (46 tackles)
Jets: McIntyre, Coples (2.0 sacks)
Dolphins: Wake (6.5 sacks)
DOLPHINS @ JETS
When: 10/28, 1 p.m. EST
Where: MetLife Stadium, New Jersey
TV: CBS, Ian Eagle and Dan Fouts
Radio: ESPN New York 98.7
Line: Jets -2.5