Things I Liked, Things I Didn’t, Things to Look For Against the Falcons

It is easy watching a game, which you know the Dolphins win, a second time. To go into Indianapolis and beat the Colts and the NFL’s latest version of Captain Comeback, is amazing.  As with any week, there are several things that jumped out at me.

Things I Liked:
·     Phillip Wheeler. Wheeler may have had a little extra giddy up in his step last week, playing against the team that originally drafted him in the 3rd round of the 2008 draft. He was everywhere.  He was applying pressure, knocking down passes, chasing down ball carriers and getting credit for the final sack of the game.
·     Mike Pouncey’s blocking. Whether he was15 yards downfield on the touchdown screen to Mike Wallace or pulling to lead Lamar Miller on the run, Pouncey continues to show he is the best center in the AFC.
·     Michael Egnew getting a key block on Erik Walden, springing Lamar Miller’s Touchdown run.
·     Derrick Shelby is such a nice surprise.
·     Brian Hartline’s hands.
·     Brent Grimes was an absolute steal.
·     Joe Philbin making a quick decision and throwing the challenge flag, it saved the Fins 4 crucial points.
·     On 3rd and 8, Lamar Miller getting 8 ½ yards, sealing the game.

Thing I Didn’t Like:
·      Ryan Tannehill needs to start using his feet a little more. There was more than once where he could have tucked it and ran for positive yards.
·      Covering the TE. The Fins are making average TE’s look like All Pro’s. That does not bode well with  future Hall of Famer Tony Gonzalez coming to town.
·      Andrew Luck escaping the sack and running for a first down on more than one 3rd and long situation.
·      No excuse for Dion Jordan to miss that sack.  
·      Jimmy Wilson playing way too much nickel.
·      Clabo is not the long-term answer at right tackle. I see why the Falcons let him go.
·      Daniel Thomas is still dancing, stuttering stepping and turning his back way too much. Crazy idea, run straight, lower your shoulder.
·      Clock management. I thought the clock management at the end of the half and the end of the game was bad.   The Dolphins were lucky that time did not run out before halftime.  Even worse, with 4:05 remaining in the game and 2nd and 5, Sherman called 2 straight passing plays. Both fell incomplete and left the Colts with too much time.

What to look for against the Falcons:
·      Pressure. Pressure. Pressure. Matt Ryan has a tendency to play like Tarzan at home, but Jane on the road. The Fins need to confuse him, get to him early and often and keep him on his heels all day. If not,  it could be a long day covering Julio Jones and Roddy White.
·      Look for Dion Jordan to get more reps on defense with Olivier Vernon struggling.
·      The Falcons are going to  test Nolan Carroll (Dimitri Patterson is out) and those rookie corners that have yet to see NFL action due to injuries.
·      I feel like Lamar Miller is due for a big day. He seems close to breaking a big run or 2. With a banged up Falcons D, it could be Miller Time. 

Prediction: This can be the game that makes the NFL take the Dolphins seriously.  The Falcons are beat up, but their receivers will keep it closer then it should be. Dolphins will score 20+ for the third straight week, while Sun Life Stadium rocks. Final Score:
Dolphins 27  Falcons 21. Everyone enjoy the game!

Carl C. Crowley


  1. Great points Carl. Tannehill's pre-snap reads stand out to me so far. He's reading the defense and getting is him team out of a bad situation. And I agree, he definitely could tuck it and run a little more.

    1. Thanks man. More than once, I found myself screaming "tuck it and run." He needs to use his feet as a weapon.


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