Jay Ajayi is tired of hearing about the Pittsburgh Steelers' triplets, Ben Roethlisberger, Antonio Brown and Le'Veon Bell. The Miami Dolphins running back wants you to know his offense has playmakers, too.
"We hear a lot of talk about the other team and who they have and the players that they have," Ajayi said, via the Miami Herald's Armondo Salguero. "And it's kind of starting to get to me where you have to understand we have players too, you know?
"We have guys that are playing at a high level and are showcasing their abilities. And I think it's time people need to respect that we have players on our offense, too, and we can get some stuff done when we're on our game."
Ajayi is the most important Dolphins offensive player on Sunday. Since Matt Moore took over, Miami has run on 51.6 percent of plays -- versus 42.6 percent with Ryan Tannehill under center. In the last meeting versus the Steelers in Week 6, Ajayi threw his breakout party, smashing Pittsburgh for 204 rushing yards. He complied two more 200-yard games before the season ended.
Ajayi knows he might be the focal point Sunday versus Pittsburgh, but thinks everyone is overlooking the Dolphins other playmakers.
"I understand that the run game and my productivity is going to play a crucial part in how successful we are on Sunday," Ajayi said Thursday. "At the same time, though, I'm very confident in all our players on offense. We have a 1,000-yard receiver in [Jarvis Landry], a guy who scored nine touchdowns in Kenny [Stills] and DeVante [Parker] can take it to the house on any play.
"And I feel real comfortable that we can spread the ball out and run the ball on anyone. And so I think we go into the game with that confidence and if we execute and handle all the details ... I think we're going to have a good day."
The Steelers defense has stiffened recently with the improved play of young DBs Artie Burns and Sean Davis, nose tackle Javon Hargrave and pass rusher Bud Dupree. Pittsburgh's biggest struggle this season has come with missed tackles (shines light squarely at Mike Mitchell). Ajayi led the NFL in yards after contact, and Landry and Parker are uber elusive after the catch. If the Dolphins playmakers shed tacklers in space, it could make up for the lack of field-stretching opportunities with Moore under center. A few broken tackles that lead to TDs will help Miami keep pace with their highflying counterparts.