|New Orleans Saints||29|
|Tampa Bay Buccaneers||20|
|New York Jets||18|
|Kansas City Chiefs||30|
|San Diego Chargers||24|
|St. Louis Rams||22|
|San Francisco 49ers||29|
|New England Patriots||28|
|New York Giants||26|
The difference between good teams and better teams comes down to winning the games you should win and winning even if it’s ugly. Well, we put the U in Ugly yesterday but accomplished the successful mission winning 27-13 in Jacksonville. Our D was stellar taking advantage of rookie QB Blake Bortles miscues that were turned into 2 pick 6s. The Offense was especially anemic in the first half and considering the competition we only held a 10-3 lead. We started the game with three 3 and outs and we were allowing The Jags to move the ball with ease, but were saved by Delmas’ 80 yard pick 6 and a Sturgis field Goal for a 10-3 half time lead. Late in the 2nd quarter The Fins had less than 50 total yards and it looked as if a victory may be in jeopardy.
At the beginning of the third quarter Rishard Matthews 22 yard pick 6 on Bortles gave us a comfortable 17-3 lead as it was becoming apparent that The Jags were not going to be able to produce much more offense. With Bortles and a lot of second year players it was just not going to happen and this game helped us to be +4 on turnovers for the year. Amazingly the Jags had more total yards than us totaling 377 to 326 yards and also had more first downs 19-17. and also led in rushing yards 176-148. So you’ve got a 13-13 game without our pick 6s.
Even this game left some fans with a lingering doubt about who we are. It’s probably likely we would not have beaten a good team with a performance like this. There are positives to be taken from this victory- kudos go to the coaching staff on making some good half time adjustments and Lamar Miller’s very solid 78 yard game. So what does this 4-3 record mean at this point? To me, this leaves us at the point of a statement game and I think this is coming next week when San Diego comes to town. At his point I feel that we are a potential playoff team, but to go 5-3 by beating The Chargers would be sending a statement to the rest of the NFL. Yours Truly, saysMikey
After the first six games we have seen some good, bad and ugly football all culminating into what has been a pattern and the only thing this team has consistently done over the past three seasons under Joe Philbin produce an average to below average record, so here we are at 3-3 and .500 ball. Realistically this team should be 4-2 but at least we did not fall to 2-4 and there are signs that the Dolphins can be a top 15 team or better (They currently rank 20th in our Power Rankings) and the game today against the Jaguars will finally help us see the true identity of this 2014 Miami Dolphins team.
The past teams would lose this game as I have written over the years articles such as Lobster Trap Game (http://dolphinseer.wordpress.com/2012/11/11/lobster-trap-game/) and today’s game fit that article to a tee as this is a game Miami SHOULD win but is usually the kind of game they let get away from them. A win today will not get them much praise, if they do win it will be looked at as a game they should have won but a loss will be taken hard by many of the fans and media as it will send the same message we have tired of seeing that Miami is still and average to below average team and they for whatever reason can’t play consistently good football to break that threshold that would get them to the next level being one of the second tier teams in the league working their way towards a top-tier team one of the élite top 10 teams in the NFL.
There are signs going back to Philbin’s first season as the Dolphins under Joe Philbin have beaten some of the top teams only to lose to some of the worst teams as they have played down to the competition. The talent is here to be a top 10 team and with better coaching and players stepping up and playing to their potential on a consistent basis Miami can erase from the memories of all of us the heartbreaking season ending losses that sent the Dolphins out of the playoffs last season when they should have made the playoffs.
This game today is that game in the season where the Dolphins can make a statement and prove they are inching towards that second tier team they truly have the potential to be. We will know in a few hours if this team gets it and have the will and desire to be a contender and step up to the challenge that a team like the Jaguars will present as they have tasted their first win of the season last week vs the Browns and I am sure they feel confident that they can beat our Dolphins.
This can be a statement game for the Dolphins, you know the kind of game the good tames do away with a team like the Jags who are in the process of putting a competitive team together and are a few years away from where they hope to be and are maybe looking at a high draft pick again this year, MIAMI MUST WIN THIS GAME!
So what Dolphins team will show up today? All signs say this should be a Dolphin win and like I mentioned earlier this is also one of those lobster trap games that have far too many times caught our Dolphins and sent them reeling towards a season of mediocrity.
Whoever shows up will help us finally get an idea of what will be our true identity for the 2014 season.
What team do you feel will show up today?
Our 3-3 Dolphins take on The Jaguars, 1-6, in Jacksonville this Sunday with a great opportunity to go on a run. Both teams are looking for back to back wins and our Dolphins need to develop some consistency to get on the winning side of 500. The 1-6 Jaguars play tough and have a young team settling on rookie Blake Bortles to guide their ship. The Dolphins have had a tendency to play “down” to the level of their opponents so I believe this is a pivotal game for us. The Fins have averaged 13.7 points in the first half the last three weeks as opposed to just 8 points in their first three games.
So what is going to make The Dolphins play to their potential? I believe that Lazor called a great game last week and he needs to show his stuff this week against the beat up defense of Jax. Tannehill had what was probably the best game of his career last week and the read option along with our ability to run made him very effective passing. All games are important, but this one is a must if we are to establish ourselves as true contenders. The defense for Jax has played well the last 3 weeks drumming The Browns 24-6 last week and holding their opponents under 20 points for those 3 games. Their offensive line played their best game of the season allowing only 2 sacks on Bortles and enabling Denard Robinson to run for 127 yds. on 22 carries. The Jags will be without the services of injured MLB Paul Posluszny and DE Denard Robinson.
So what is the winning formula for Miami? 1) To keep Lamar Miller going (81 carries, 391 yds, and 4 Tds) which will allow Tannehill to be successful in the read option. 2) Spreading the wealth. We were reintroduced to Charles Clay last week in Chicago along with catches by Wallace, Landry, and Hartline. 3) We are looking strong on D and have Dion Jordan returning this week which will certainly bolster an already scary defensive line. so look for Bortles to be hurried a lot and on his back some 4) My MVP for last week, the Coaching Staff. to again be committed to Tannehill’s running and the diverse play calling that was so successful vs Chicago. 5) We need a better performance from both Sturgis and Fields on Special Teams.
The main thing I will be looking for is that we do not play down to the 1-6 Jags. There are many teams like us close to a .500 record who want to be playoff contenders, but we have the best overall talent of any of those teams. This should be a mild route for the Dolphins 31-17. Yours Truly, saysMikey.
|San Diego Chargers||23|
|Tampa Bay Buccaneers||24|
|New York Jets||22|
|New England Patriots||29|
|St. Louis Rams||21|
|Kansas City Chiefs||30|
|Green Bay Packers||28|
|New Orleans Saints||26|