“Blame me. It was my fault.”
Those were the words of accountability from Jets receiver Terrelle Pryor describing one of the critical plays that led to the Jets’ 20-12 loss to the Dolphins on Sunday in their home opener.
With the Jets down 20-6 in the third quarter and in the process of flipping the momentum — having gotten the ball back on a fumble by Dolphins quarterback Ryan Tannehill at the Miami 12 — Jets quarterback Sam Darnold was intercepted by Miami cornerback Xavien Howard in the end zone on the very next play.
The ball was intended for Pryor, but Howard appeared to jump the pass route, step in front of Pryor and pick the ball off.
After the game, Darnold beat himself up for not throwing the ball higher to allow the 6-foot-4 Pryor to jump for the catch.
“Nah, that pick was all my fault,” Pryor said. “I didn’t stop. When I was running up on the corner [Howard], Sam made his read, and his read was to go from Robby [Anderson], and if the safety jumps to come to me, and my job was to cut across the corner’s face and I didn’t do that well enough.
“I was trying to run up on [Howard] and step on his toes and get a little closer to him, but as I was getting closer, he started veering inside and I was too late to shut it off. The way Sam throws, he doesn’t … stare at you, he believes that you’re going to be there, and I let him down.
“I didn’t do my job well enough. I let the quarterback down and I let the team down. That one was a tough one for me. I’m still thinking about that right now, and I’ll keep thinking about that play. It was really my fault.”