Jay Ajayi didn’t make history against the Jets on Sunday.
Ajayi’s streak of 200-yard rushing games ended at two, but it’s clear that his place at the center of the Dolphins offense will continue indefinitely. The Dolphins stuck with Ajayi after a first half that saw him run for a 20-yard touchdown and for six yards on his other nine carries, which was a choice that paid off handsomely.
Ajayi ran 14 times for 85 yards in the second half, including runs of nine, 16 and 20 yards on the Dolphins’ final drive to run out the clock. Everyone knew what was coming and the Jets came into Sunday with the league’s stingiest run defense, but Ajayi got the job done. That makes him much more essential to coach Adam Gase now than he was when Ajayi was left home for the team’s opening game.
“He knows exactly how I want to call the game,” Gase said, via the Palm Beach Post. “I’m never going to go away from him.”
The mixture of a healthy offensive line and Ajayi as the workhorse in the backfield has paved the way for three straight wins that have breathed new life into the Dolphins season. If the ride continues in San Diego and Los Angeles the next two weeks, the Dolphins may be able to make a playoff run that seemed unthinkable after a 30-17 home loss to the Titans in Week Five.