November 26, 2014

Potentially forced into two major changes to the lineup, coach Todd Bowles refuses to make another at quarterback for the struggling New York Jets.

With Darrelle Revis out and Nick Mangold possibly missing as well, the Jets will try to simplify things again with Ryan Fitzpatrick under center Sunday against the Miami Dolphins, who are bringing a familiar face to the Meadowlands in Quintin Coples.

New York (5-5) has lost four of its last five games including two straight after falling 24-17 at Houston last week while gaining a season-low 267 yards.

With Fitzpatrick coming under scrutiny, some have wondered whether Geno Smith could be given back the starting job. That's not going to happen yet with Bowles preferring to stay with the more experienced quarterback despite his 46.6 completion percentage, 409 yards and four interceptions over the last two games.

Fitzpatrick's two picks against the Texans ended the Jets' last two drives.

"I don't think a lot of throws are Ryan's fault," Bowles said. "When you have a quarterback, you have to look at the overall scheme, not just the quarterback and as far as things are getting done, and a lot of times we just need to get on the same page. I think Ryan made some good throws. I thought he made some bad ones as well.

"But you don't give up on a quarterback just like that, because overall what he's done this year, he still proved he can do that going forward."

That optimism stems from Fitzpatrick leading New York to a surprising 4-1 start, including a 27-14 win over Miami (4-6) in London in Week 4.

Bowles thinks returning to the simplified formula that led to that success will pay off again.

"I think we started doing some things that we weren't making plays as a group together," Bowles said. "And instead of going back to basics, we probably started trying to go into trigonometry when we should've stayed with algebra. I think we're getting back to basics."

That likely means relying on Chris Ivory, who has been very quiet with 219 yards on 2.7 per carry and two touchdowns over the last five games. He raced for 460 yards, averaging 5.5 an attempt while scoring four times in his first four games. Included in that was a season-high 166 yards on 29 carries against the Dolphins.

"Algebra was running the ball, throwing it when we can, play action and doing the things that we needed to do and playing the right type of football and playing complimentary football," Bowles said. "We're trying to get back to that."

It might be tougher with Mangold nursing a deep cut on his hand that needed six or seven stitches, putting his status for Sunday in jeopardy.

The Jets will be without Revis, who suffered a concussion last week and was ruled out Friday since he's yet to pass the NFL's concussion protocol. Second-year cornerback Marcus Williams likely will start in place of Revis, having started once at safety and once at cornerback already this season.

''I wouldn't call it `strange,' I would call it `fun,''' Williams said of playing throughout the secondary this season. ''Just to go out there and play different positions, it's probably been tough on other teams because you probably never know where I'm going to be.''

New York has lost three in a row and six of seven at home against the Dolphins, who enter this visit to East Rutherford with Coples after he was released by the Jets on Monday.

"It brings chills to me to be able to go back and face them this Sunday," Coples said. "I never got a great explanation for it. They benched me for whatever reason. I still don't know. But I'm moving forward."

Coples was struggling to fit into Bowles' 3-4 defense as a linebacker so Miami will use him as a defensive end in its 4-3 scheme to replace Cameron Wake, who was lost for the season with a torn Achilles tendon last month.

Coples had 16.5 sacks over his first three seasons after being picked 16th overall in the 2012 draft.

"He's a cool cat," defensive end Olivier Vernon said. "We're just trying to add guys to help win."

The Dolphins are also struggling, losing for the third time in four games with Sunday's 24-14 defeat to Dallas.

Miami, though, hasn't given up on reaching the playoffs.

"We've still got a chance," Vernon said. "We're not making up any fairy tale. We know what we've got to do."

Ryan Tannehill has completed 55.0 percent of his passes while throwing six touchdowns and eight interceptions in seven career meetings with the Jets. He had his worst performance against them earlier this season, going 19 for 44 for 198 yards with two TDs and two INTs.

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