Dolphins/Jets- A Special Rivalry

 There are rivalries in sports that when you hear them you know it is special. You know when you hear Yankees/Red Sox, Giants/Dodgers, Canadians/Bruins, and Ohio State/Michigan it is going to be different, more intense. Well, the Dolphins/Jets rivalry takes a back seat to none other. There have been so many moments over the years that this rivalry is still piping hot, no matter where either team resides in the standings.
  The history between these two teams is chuck full of big wins and brutal losses on both sides. As a Dolphins fan in my mid 30’s, I believe I have grown up in the heart of the rivalry. I remember my uncle who made me a Dolphins fan telling me “We HAVE TO beat the Jets. We CAN’T lose to THEM.” Why was that? Marty Lyons cheap shot that ended Dwight Stephenson’s Hall of Fame career prematurely, THAT’S WHY! Ken O’Brien putting up 51 points to beat Marino and the Dolphins in 1986, THAT’S WHY! Maybe the day Dan Marino hit Ferrell Edmunds in the final minutes to go ahead of the Jets in the 1991 season finale, to only have the Jets put themselves in position so Raul Allegre could steal OUR playoff spot a few minutes later. THAT’S WHY! Let’s not even get into the Monday Night Miracle.
      However, in any good rivalry, things have to be two sided. The Dolphins have driven a stake through the hearts of the Jets on many occasions. You still can’t bring up the name AJ Duhe to a Jets fan without him getting visibly ill. Who can forget the Jets passing over Dan Marino to select O’brien?  How many countless Sundays where Marino and the Marks brothers held an air show over the Jets defense? My personal favorite was the now famous “Fake Spike” game where Marino caught the Jets sleeping to seal a stunning second half comeback to win 28-24 on November 27,1994. That game was for first place that week, but if you ask some Jets fans, it had longer standing effects. The Jets didn’t win a game the rest of that season, and only won 4 games total over the next two years. From the hair pulling of Ricky Williams by Marvin Jones, to Chad Pennington clinching a division title for the Dolphins at the Meadowlands in 2008, to the “Hot Sauce” controversy surrounding the rivalry this season, it is endless.
      Historically, the Dolphins are the more successful and decorated franchise. The Dolphins lead the Jets in Super Bowls(2-1), Super Bowl Appearances(5-1), and in Division Titles(14-2). However, the Jets do lead all time head to head  49-44-1. The Dolphins and Jets have both suffered some down times in recent years which has led some of the younger fans on both sides to question who their respective teams number one rival is. Make no mistake about it, if you know the history of this rivalry, and of your team, whether you are a Dolphins fan or a Jets fan, you know this is the number one rival. It is why as Dolphins fans, we refer to this as “Jets Week.” It means just a little bit more, we want to win the game just a little bit more.  This game is just as big in the standings this time around for both teams, as the outcome can turn the fate of both team's season.