Dolphins QB Matt Moore prepares for 1st start in 5 years
DAVIE, Fla. (AP) A few hours after helping his wife deliver their third child, Matt Moore was back at the Miami Dolphins' complex preparing for his first start in five years.
The job of quarterback in a playoff race leaves limited time for family, even newcomers.
''Everything is good. Everyone is healthy,'' the new dad and new No. 1 QB said after practice Wednesday. ''And I'm here ready to focus on the Jets.''
Moore will start Saturday at the Jets as the replacement for Ryan Tannehill , who will miss a game for the first time in his five-year career after straining his left knee last week against Arizona. The Dolphins (8-5) blew a 12-point lead after Moore entered the game, but he then led the drive to a game-winning field goal on the final play.
That was Sunday. The next morning Moore's son, Wyatt, was born. That afternoon, Moore was back at work and prepping for perhaps the biggest game of his 10-year career.
''There was no drama to it,'' offensive coordinator Clyde Christensen said with a grin. ''He just went in, had the baby, then back in the office. We have a couple of coaches with wives who are pregnant, and I said, 'Hey, learn from him. Let's go no drama. We don't need to miss any meetings. Don't do it during the red zone meeting or something like that.' Everyone's got to be on the same page on this, including the wives and doctors.''
Moore's on board with the idea of staying drama-free. He shrugged when asked to describe his week so far.
''Normal,'' he said, trying to sound convincing.
Coaches and other players also attempt a business-as-usual tone when discussing the quarterback switch.
''We have extreme confidence in him,'' receiver Jarvis Landry said.
''He's going to come in and do a great job,'' Christensen said. ''I don't have any doubt about that.''
Teammates describe Moore as a gunslinger, which he takes as a compliment. But while he's not afraid to be aggressive with his throws, he's reluctant to get too involved in play-calling with coach Adam Gase.
''He'll ask, `What do you like?''' Moore said. ''The easiest answer is, `Just call it, and we'll make it work.' I have this fear of asking for something specific and having it not work out. I just let him call it.''
Only two Dolphins on the active roster have been with the team longer than Moore, who has 25 career starts, including 12 for Miami in 2011.
But he has never started a game for a team with a winning record, much less in December when a defeat could doom the Dolphins' playoff chances.
Will this be his biggest start? He recoils at the suggestion.
''It's the next start. Sorry,'' he said. ''I've done this before. I'm just trying to jump in and have these guys and myself not miss a beat.''
Coincidentally, Moore's last start was also against the Jets - a Miami victory on Jan. 1, 2012. His coach that day was Todd Bowles, now the Jets' head coach.
That's so long ago Moore has had two children since.
For more NFL coverage: http://www.pro32.ap.org and http://www.twitter.com/AP-NFL
Follow Steven Wine on Twitter: http://twitter.com/Steve-Wine. His work can be found at http://bigstory.ap.org/content/steven-wine