The Oakland Game, The Jets Game, and Where I See Miami | FinHeaven - Miami Dolphins Forums

The Oakland Game, The Jets Game, and Where I See Miami


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Apr 29, 2009
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First, I'm excited by the win. All Power Rankings (that I saw) rated Miami as one of the bottom 3 teams in the league. Many had us dead last. Well, the worst team in the NFL doesn't knock heads the way Miami did yesterday. Coaching is a big deal in this game, and as the year unfolds, we'll see how coach-starved this team was.

All that sounds awesome, and it's true, but I can't get TOO excited. It's something to build on, but you can't expect to have consistent success when you're that predictable in the passing game.

Some finer points:

My friend and I agreed that when Miami passes to set up the run, we're at our best. When we were doing that, we were absolutely gashing them in the running game. The slightest threat of the pass (it's not like Hartline was ripping off 30-yard chunks), gives us the room we need to establish what looks like an outstanding rushing attack. Best looking ground game by a Miami team (speaking of a product that should translate week-to-week, and excluding Wild Cat bull****) since Ricky's first go-around in Miami.

On a related point, this WC Offense is going to look a lot more like Houston's than Green Bay's. It may evolve as Tannehill matures, but this team won't win games consistently lining up in the shotgun. We will win games if we execute on play action and continue to block well in the running game.

Speaking of blocking well in the running game, Pouncey is absolutely perfect for a ZBS. I'm more hesitant to let go of Long than I have been in two years, and he made some big, stupid mistakes in pass protection, but I don't really want to **** with a good thing, and our run blocking maybe the best thing we have going. Bush left a lot of yards on the field in the first half. Could have rushed for closer to 200.

But Bush more than made up for it in the 2nd half. His 2nd half performance kind of embodies the direction I think this team is headed this season. If you make mistakes, fix them. There's an accountability from the coaches to the players that hasn't been in Miami since Nick Saban. The entire team made the necessary adjustments in the 2nd half - from scheme to player execution. In Bush's case, it meant taking the 3 or 4 yard run and from there, see if you can get extra. If you notice, he sat a while in that 1st half, and I'd bet money that it was for his poor use of blocking. On a related note, I thought Miller looked OK. He ran hard, but his vision was shaky. Solid start, but I didn't see anything approaching special. That's not to say he won't do special things.

Tannehill threw some very nice balls. You see the elite flashes. From an athletic standpoint (I'm including throwing the ball as an athletic activity, because it is), this guy is more than you can ask for. He's fast, quick, has good size, a big arm, and very good arm accuracy (that is to say that I attribute most of his issues with inaccuracy to mental mistakes that cause him to 2nd guess his throws, etc.). He only threw a couple bad ball, and he made two big plays with his feet. I know A. Fasano isn't a dynamic threat at TE, but I Tannehill has to start improving at working the middle of the field. The pass to Bess was a thing of beauty. We haven't had a QB who can make that pass since Dan Marino. I think he's still a little hesitant to trust his reads over the middle - lot more traffic, etc. It's important, because we still have to pass to set up the run, but Hartline won't dominate his match up like that on a consistent basis.

I think we'll have to present unbalanced looks to get match ups in the passing game against the Jets. I don't think we want to get away too much from our base package (2 WR, 2 RB, 1 TE), because we don't have the WR's to scare anyone anyway, and we seem to run best out of this formation. Also, Bush and (sigh) Fasano are two of our best offensive weapons. But I do expect to see Bess lining up next to Hartline, allowing either to work out of the slot on base formations. Stuff like that. Also, I'm still waiting for us to involve Bush in the passing game, and I think this is the week to do it.

Talking a lot about the offense, but the D played a pretty good game. The lack of a pass rush is still troublesome. Wake applied pressure a few times, and he should have drawn some holding calls. But that other edge remains a serious issue. I almost lost my **** when Dansby took a ridiculously bad angle on the Goodson TD. He had plenty of time to cut the play off for a 10-15 yard gain. For the most part, though, the D prevented the big play, and they absolutely made the Raiders eat their **** in the running game. Misi is a MUCH better 4-3 OLB than he is a 3-4 OLB. Kind of like when Saban was here, we're making the most out of mediocre CB play, and Clemons is also mediocre. But our tackling for the most part is solid, and we're keeping the ball in front of us. We're also playing very good RZ D. R. Jones is the one guy in the secondary who can elevate this D. He's finally playing at his natural position, SS, and he's making plays around the line and in coverage. Jones and Clemons are polar opposites. Clemons very rarely makes significant mistakes, but it's even more rare for him to make a significant play. Jones will **** up, but he'll also make some plays. When we drafted Jones, I thought we could kind of mimic what the Steelers do with their Safeties. Ryan Clark is solid, and that lets Troy run around and make plays. Clemons isn't as good as Clark, and Jones isn't as good as Troy, but in terms of characteristics, it's always the way I've seen those two playing together. I think we're starting to see it a little.

Next week and big picture:

For the D, I think it'll be a similar effort. It won't look the same. I don't think we'll be as concerned about the Jets rushing attack, so I don't expect Sanchez to throw for almost 400 yards. But I'd be a little surprised if the Jets scored more than 20 points (without the aid of significant turnovers). Really, I think we match up great with that offense, and we should be in position to create some of our own turnovers.

I think our D matches up well with their O, and I think their D matches up well with our O. We don't have the WR's to keep that 8th man out of the box. We're going to have to be patient, protect the ball, and execute the play action pass. I think the difference in the game will be on a couple of 10 yard runs by Bush. The line will create a few creases for Bush to get to the 2nd level. If Bush can make some people miss at the 2nd level and turn some of those 10 yard runs into game breaking runs, I think we have a good shot of controlling the game. Otherwise, I see it being an absolute slugfest, and say the Jets are the slight favorites.

Big picture, this season is about a team that will stay grounded. We'll make strides forward, and we'll backslide, but it'll be about keeping as much as you can when we make the forward leaps and learning how to limit the things that hurt this team. It's going to be a painful, exciting process.


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Jul 7, 2012
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Thanks Offerdohl, nice write upon the Raiders game. :lol2:
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