In Sunday's season finale matchup between the New York Jets and Miami Dolphins, the Dolphins needed a win to have a chance to make the playoffs as the AFC's No. 6 seed, while the Jets were just trying to finish with a .500 record. Wants and motivations didn't appear to matter much, though, as the Jets beat the Dolphins by a 20-7 score, ending Miami's season and giving the Jets second place in the AFC East. It was a disappointing end to an odd year for the Dolphins, while New York has to take positive things away from its 8-8 record despite having a poor and oft-injured group of skill players. Here's a look at the relevant fantasy players from the game:
Somehow, Smith became somewhat consistent down the stretch. He put up 17 or more fantasy points in three of his last four games, including Sunday, when he had 190 passing yards on 17-of-27 passing and 44 rushing yards and a score on 10 carries. For a rookie who was briefly benched the last time the Jets played the Dolphins, this strong performance had to be reassuring.
There was a brief period early in the season -- largely when Ivory was hurt -- that Powell actually found himself with some fantasy value, putting up 12 fantasy points a game in Weeks 2-4. Since then, though, he's largely been relegated to backup duty. Sunday, with Ivory banged up with cracked ribs, Powell had his most carries since Week 3, carrying the ball 21 times for 76 yards and even throwing the ball once for 30 yards. It was only eight fantasy points, so he wasn't a dominant performer, but anyone forced to roll him out in the finals couldn't have reasonably expected more.
Ivory was seriously held in check Sunday, largely because of the cracked ribs. He ran for 19 yards on five carries, and for a running back who is basically a complete black hole in the receiving game, he needs way more than five carries to produce.
Kerley, Nelson, and Holmes continued their sub-mediocrity. They went for 40, 66, and 41 yards, respectively, and none reached the end zone. Basically, they're all just guys, and until the Jets can get guys who are better guys, these guys will do what these guys do, and that means they aren't fantasy-starting guys.
Fantasy players who were worth it: Mike Wallace
It was just by the skin of his teeth that Wallace managed fantasy respectability, putting up only eight fantasy points despite a touchdown. The receiver had five catches for 25 yards in the game. It was a strange end of the season for Wallace. In his last six games, he topped 80 yards and double-digit fantasy points three times, and went for under 40 yards in each of the other three.
After a hot stretch, and as one of the most consistent quarterbacks for much of the season, Tannehill's production cratered in the last two games. He put up 204 passing yards (on 20-of-40 passing) and a touchdown Sunday, but was also intercepted three times, tying his Week 4 performance for his most picks on the season. It was a disappointing end to a promising sophomore campaign for Tannehill, and if he can get a better offensive line around him for 2014, he could be a sleeper quarterback.
With Daniel Thomas at less than full strength, Miller got the lion's share of carries for the team, and he responded with 73 rushing yards on 17 carries. It was Miller's second-best game since Week 9, but still, it's nothing special.
Hartline's day was cut short after he suffered what appeared to be a torn ACL. He went for 38 yards on two catches, but the more important thing is going to be his knee health going forward. A torn ACL could delay his start to 2014.
Clay couldn't get much going for the third straight game. He caught four balls for 43 yards, but only totaled seven fantasy points in the last three games.