Florida Apple Cup: Gaskin Draws First Start, Shines Against Minshew, Jags
Ten games into his NFL career, Myles Gaskin became a starting running back for the Miami Dolphins.
On Thursday night in Jacksonville, he showed himself to be more Mercury Morris or Jim Kiick than Larry Csonka, sliding through creases rather than running over people.
The former University of Washington standout looked like the No. 1 guy, rushing 22 times for 66 yards as he did the bulk of the running for the Dolphins in their decisive 31-13 victory.
It was clearly a changing of the guard. At tailback.
Gaskin began the night with a 9-yard gainer and closed with a 15-yarder.
He chipped in 5 catches for another 29 yards.
Not bad for a seventh-round draft pick.
The Huskies' all-time leading rusher wasted no time in making his promotion look good — running for 5 or more yards on each of his first four carries against ex-Washington State quarterback Gardner Minshew and the Jaquars.
It was Gaskin vs. Minshew.
The Huskies' all-time leading rusher against Mustache Man.
Call it the Florida Apple Cup.
At halftime, Gaskins' Dolphins, like his Huskies of the past, had the upper hand, leading 21-7.
On Miami's opening series of the game, the 5-foot-10, 200-pound Gaskin played a leading role in moving his team down the field for a touchdown. He took handoffs out of the shotgun formation and ran eight times for what turned into a 12-play, 84-yard scoring drive.
Wearing his obscure No. 37, 32 digits higher than his college jersey, he came out and opened the second series, too, before he began to share the position with fellow backs Matt Breida and Jordan Howard.
By halftime, Gaskin had churned out 10 carries for 33 yards, his rushes exceeding both of his team-high totals in each of Miami's first two games. He also had three receptions for 23 yards.
Gaskin was back out there when the second half launched, running for 5 yards on his first carry. He looked quick and durable as pounded on the Jacksonville defensive front, and drew plaudits from the broadcast team.
Through three quarters, he had 40 yards rushing on 14 carries and 26 yards receiving on four catches as the Dolphins led 28-7.
Miami coach Brian Flores appears to have settled on his No. 1 runner after altering three guys over the first two games.
Breida and Howard had just 3 carries each against Jacksonville. They had to stand there and watch Gaskin do his thing.
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