Monday Night Spotlight

Cris Carter
Yahoo! Sports

The New York Jets must be careful. Games in the AFC East are very, very tight.

The Miami Dolphins are coming off of a huge, emotional win over St. Louis at home last week after a disappointing 0-6 start. And while they haven't had great success lately in New York against the Jets, the Dolphins have found a running back in Sammy Morris. If Miami can get Jay Fiedler to provide some type of a passing attack … well, just look for this game to be close.

In the end, Curtis Martin's running will wear down Miami's defense and allow the Jets and Chad Pennington to come up with enough big passing plays to squeak by the Dolphins.

Marquee matchup: Jets center Kevin Mawae vs. Dolphins defensive tackle Bryan Robinson. Mawae is probably the best center in football. If he can control the middle of Miami's defense, it will allow the Jets to do what they really want to do – and that's run the ball 28 times and throw the ball between 25 to 28 times. I give Mawae the edge in this matchup.

Also keep an eye on: Dolphins head coach Dave Wannstedt. What surprises will he have for the Jets? Last week, he was totally out of character in calling several trick plays against the Rams. He knows the whole country is watching. He knows that his job is on the line. So he'll want his team to play well on this big stage.

The Dolphins will win if: Morris can rush for more than 100 yards. The Dolphins' offensive line needs him to take over the offense. If not, Miami will be forced to throw and the o-line will be put to the challenge. Jets defensive end John Abraham leads the NFL with 7½ sacks.

The Jets will win if: They don't allow the Dolphins to surprise them with fake punts, fake field goals and halfback passes. The Jets can't allow any of these things to trip them up and let Miami turn them into big plays.

Prediction: Jets. The Jets are a better team and they are playing at home. Plus, they have to win to keep pace with New England in the AFC East. They have far too much at stake, so they'll be ready.