Sunday, September 29, 2013

DOLPHINS @ SAINTS PREDICTION

Ok, Week 4 is upon us and the Dolphins are 3-0! Even the biggest Dolphins homer couldn't have seen this when looking at the schedule when it first came out. But the Fins are on in a meaningful "PRIMETIME" game for the first time in god knows how many years. Monday Night Football and it should be a good one.

WHEN MIAMI HAS THE BALL: It is a simple gameplan for the Dolphins this week on offense. Run the ball, run it some more, and if not sure run it again. Keep the clock moving and Drew Brees and the Saints high powered offense on the sidelines. The Saints rush defense isn't great and I think Lamar Miller and Daniel Thomas can have success running the ball this week. And if they can run with some moderate success it should open up some big plays in the passing game to Mike Wallace.  Rob Ryan is the new Saints defensive coordinator and he has improved that unit but its still not an elite defensive unit by any means. Once again, as I say here every week the biggest key for the Fins is the offensive line. This game will be in the SuperDome it will be very loud and the Saints love to blitz and attack the QB. It is imperative for the Fins to block well and give Tannehill time or else it could be a long night.

WHEN THE SAINTS HAVE THE BALL: Drew Brees....Jimmy Graham....what more needs to be said. The Saints have a high powered offensive attack. Marqus Colston....Darren Sproles...they can come at you in waves. Last week Tony Gonzalez was outstanding on the opening drive, after that drive Miami adjusted and Gonzalez didn't catch a pass. Graham is a bigger threat than Gonzalez so the Dolphins will need to be even better this week. If Cam Wake can play a little even on only passing downs that would be a great help for the Fins. If not Dion Jordan must step up and make some plays. Rattle Brees and make the Saints o-line account for him at all times.The Dolphins secondary will be tested. Patterson is still out but it sounds like the 2 rookies Taylor and Davis will finally see the field this week. Welcome to the NFL boys...it's Monday Night football and the Saints offense! The Saints running game is nothing special and not a huge concern.

So the first 3 weeks I have picked the Dolphins to win and have been almost spot on with my score predictions. I've been going with my gut on these predictions and its been working out. So, I'm not gonna change that now. Everything on paper says the Saints should win and maybe even win fairly easily. A young Dolphins team thrust into a big primetime NFL game, how will they handle that and being on the road no less. The Saints are unbeaten and have a high powered offense. Everything points to a Saints win and maybe an easy one. But something is telling me the Dolphins are gonna hang around....hang around....hang around....and pull this one out late. I see a shoot-out this week   DOLPHINS 34   SAINTS 30

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Last time these two teams met, Saints embarrassed Dolphins

The last time the Miami Dolphins played the New Orleans Saints the Dolphins were embarrassed on their home field.

The Dolphins were in year two of the Chad Henne experiment and the wildcat was still on the loose. The Saints marched into Land Shark Stadium with a 5-0 record on their way to a Super Bowl Championship.

The Dolphins jumped out early with a direct snap to running back Ricky Williams for a 4 yard touchdown, after a Tyrone Culver interception. Three minutes later Ricky breaks a 68 yard run for a touchdown. He would tie his career best with three  on the day. 

The Dolphins were up by 14 points going into the second half and had intercepted Drew Brees twice.

However, the second half belonged to the Saints. They opened the second half with a 42 yard interception return for a touchdown by Darren Sharper. Our friend Reggie Bush got in on the action with a 10 yard reverse for a score and Brees emphatically “dunked” on the goal post after a 2 yard sneak for the TD.

"There are times in the game when a team just needs an emotional lift," he said. "I felt like I had to do something to get everybody hyped. The first thing that came to mind was to dunk it."

The Saints shut out the Dolphins in the fourth quarter 22-0. Chad Henne’s fourth quarter interception to Tracy Porter for a touchdown sealed the Dolphins fate. The inability to close games out has plagued this team for years.

The Saints overcame four turnovers and flat out embarrassed Miami, 46-34. I still remember writhing in disappointment as the Dolphins squandered away a sure victory. It was bad. See for yourself.


But that was then. The Dolphins have a chance to return the favor. They come into Monday night’s game having scored more points through three games than the high powered Saints. No more Chad Henne. Ryan Tannehill is showing improvement ahead of schedule and gaining confidence with every game. The defense has also shown improvement by creating turnovers and being stingy in the red zone. As long as the Dolphins can grind this game out with the run and the defense doesn’t give up the big play to the tightend, the Dolphins can be 4-0. 



Things I Liked, Things I Didn't, Things To Look For Against The Saints


Immediately after last week’s game against the Falcons, I said to my wife  “I don’t know how the Dolphins won that game.” After watching it a second time, it is a little clearer.

Things That I Liked:
·      John Jerry providing the second level block that sprung Lamar Miller’s 49 yard run, as forecasted last week: http://www.dolphinstalk.com/2013/09/things-i-liked-things-i-didnt-things-to_21.html
·      Dion Jordan playing tough at the point of attack, holding the Falcons to a field goal in the 2nd quarter.
·      Finishing strong to end the half.
·      Hello Rishard Matthews, coming up with several catches, including 2 clutch grabs on 3rd down.
·      Don Jones game changing, fumble causing special teams tackle. He has been flashing all season on special teams, no wonder why he was kept on the final 53-man roster.
·      John Denney coming up with that football at the bottom of the pile.
·      The final drive. What was not to like, with 4:46 on the clock. Ryan Tannehill led his team on great touchdown winning drive. Converting 3 times on third down, Tannehill went 9/12 for 69 yards.
·      Pressure supplied by Dion Jordan that caused interception that sealed the win.
Things I Didn’t Like:
·      Olivier Vernon. He looks lost and hesitant and he is consistently handled one on one.
·      Vernon’s play begs the question why isn’t Dion Jordan playing more? I thought he outplayed every other DE after Cameron Wake went out.
·      Tannehill needs better pocket awareness and is starting to develop a habit of coughing up the football.
·      Richie Incognito’s pass blocking was poor to say the least.
·      3 total yards of offense in the 1st quarter.
·      Nolan Carroll. It is scary to think he is the third best corner on the team.
·      Charles Clay should have caught that ball, he tipped it, enabling it to be intercepted, killing a drive.
·      Lamar Miller needs to catch that swing pass. Hit him in the hands. He catches it, he scores.
It is exciting having the Dolphins playing on the national stage, playing another undefeated team. The Saints are considered one of the best teams in the NFL. This matchup gives Miami the opportunity to jump into  “contender status.” But it is not going to be easy.
Things To Look For Against The Saints:
·      Jimmy Graham scares me. The Dolphins defense has had trouble covering every team’s tight end, and Graham is  better than anyone they have faced all season.  The key to the game could be controlling Graham and running back Darren Sproles out of the backfield.
·      Look for Dion Jordan to keep getting more reps. He commanded several double teams against the Falcons.
·      Look for Mike Wallace to have a bounce back performance, he is from New Orleans and should be playing in front of lots of family and friends.
·      The front 4 needs to get pressure on Drew Brees, blitzing him too much could leave the Fins open for big plays.
·      Lamar Miller needs to get more carries if the Fins are going to win the game.
Like I said, it is going to be tough. Playing a great team on the road, in a hostile environment, but I am a homer and I believe the offense wins this one late, Prediction: Miami 31 Saints 30. Everyone enjoy football Sunday and enjoy the Fins on Monday Night! 

Carl C. Crowley
@carlccrowley 

VIDEO: Brent Grimes MIC'D up for the Falcons Game


Drew Brees on Ryan Tannehill

Brees-- "He seems like a great young man. Texas kid who went to Texas A&M, I'm jealous. When I was in high school that's all I wanted to do was go to Texas A&M. Obviously I wouldn't trade it for the world. I think his journey has been an interesting one. I think he started out as a receiver, and if I'm not mistaken he was a pretty good one. Then all of the sudden he's playing quarterback and drafted in the first round.

"He's a phenomenal athlete and playing very well this year. He's a guy that isn't talked about a lot from last year's draft class with the RGIIIs, Andrew Lucks and Russell Wilsons, but man he's having I think quite the career thus far, especially early on in his career. I think he's handled that process pretty well, and I think he's got a bright future ahead of him."

Quote from the New Orleans Times-Picayune

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Wake may play Monday

Despite reports that Dolphin’s defensive linemen Cameron Wake would miss 2-3 weeks due to his mild ankle sprain, he was a limited participant in Wednesdays practice. Brian Hartline stated that he would be “shocked” if he didn’t play on Monday and some even feel that the estimation of the games he would miss was an exaggeration. His presence will most certainly be needed come Monday night when the team flies to New Orleans to play the undefeated Saints. With Drew Brees under center and Jimmy Graham stretching the field, the Dolphins will need  as much help putting pressure as they can get. Without Wake, the team was unable to sack Matt Ryan and struggled to stop the run last week against Atlanta, even though the Dolphins came out victorious due to the elite 4th quarter play of Ryan Tannehill.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Sunday's win was big, but a win Monday would be even bigger.

Just two minutes and twenty seconds into the third quarter at Sun Life Stadium on Sunday things looked bleak.  The Falcons had just extended their lead to 20-10 after a Matt Ryan touchdown pass, which was set up when Ryan Tannehill was stripped sack deep in his own end.  At that point most Dolphins fans had to think, “well I guess 2-1 is pretty good?”  The Falcons hadn't dominated the game but were certainly in control and you kind of had that feeling that this could be the momentum swing they needed to run away and hide.
            From the outside very few people had faith in a Miami comeback but the players on that Dolphins sideline did, and they came through with their 3rd comeback win of the year.  A Ryan Tannehill touchdown pass to rookie Dion Sims capped the comeback and Miami had put the Falcons and the rest of the league on notice that this team doesn't give up, and they may be pretty good as well.  As they walked off the field after the 27-23 victory enthusiasm was high after beating the best team in the NFC from a year ago, but the celebration didn't last too long as another tough test awaits this week.
While last week’s win was momentous, a win Monday night in New Orleans could be something that changes the direction of this franchise.  Beating the Saints in the Superdome will be no easy task.  Including the playoffs, since the start of the 2009 season the Saints are 20-4 in home games that Sean Payton was the head coach.  This adds up to being one of the most dominant home teams in the league in that time frame.
It’s difficult for any team to go into the Superdome and come out on top, and it’s something the young Dolphins may not be ready for.  Especially coming off such an emotional win over Atlanta.  It’s an old adage in football and all sports that after a big win you have to shake off the hangover from the victory and get back to work.  Which sometimes is easier said then done.  Luckily for Miami the Saints will require all of their attention and then some.  It will take a flawless game this week for the magic in Miami to continue.  That being said most of the experts will be picking the Saints and counting the Dolphins out just like they did in the third quarter against Atlanta on Sunday, and we all know how that turned out.

Billy Dowling
@BDowling33

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Vaughn Martin to IR

The Dolphins today placed Vaughn Martin on the Injured Reserve and his season is over. To take his place the Dolphins signed Marvin Austin a former second round pick of the NY Giants.

Comeback Win Shows Growth in Ryan Tannehill’s Game

Ryan Tannehill showed us the growth in his game on Sunday en route to his second career comeback win.

Tannehill has been poised and accurate, posting a 94.3 passer rating through three games. He throws darts all over the field, hitting nine different receivers in the Dolphins victory against the Falcons. I’ve even noticed Tannehill barking signals at the line, pre-snap. This shows he’s comfortable running the offense and reflects his film study on opposing defenses. He’s also showing maturity by not “forcing” the ball to our sixty million dollar man WR Mike Wallace. He’s going through his reads, stepping into the pocket (when he has time), and delivering his passes with speed and accuracy.

In this 3-0 stretch he’s shown command of the offense, as well as command of his huddle. “Before the [last] drive started I just told the guys, ‘Hey! Doesn’t matter what happened before now. All that matters is what we do on this drive.’”

Tannehill was sacked 5 times, threw a pick, fumbled twice, and was knocked down a few times in the win against the Falcons. His receivers also had two drops on the last drive.
The second year quarterback over came all of those challenges and led his team on a 13 play, 75 yard game winning drive. He had two second half touchdowns and even collaborated with offensive coordinator Mike Sherman on the last play of the drive that sealed the deal. I just wish he’d use his legs a little more and get rid of the ball a lot quicker.

Monday, September 23, 2013

Cam Wake out 2-3 weeks

Reports are out that Dolphins superstar defensive end Cam Wake has a sprained MCL and will be out 2-3 weeks. Which most likely means that you won't see Wake play vs the Saints or Ravens. The following week is the BYE week and it would be safe to assume the next time Cam Wake plays will be Week 7 vs Buffalo.

VIDEO: Watch the Dolphins FINAL GAME WINNING DRIVE vs Atlanta

CLICK HERE to watch the Final Game Winning Drive vs Atlanta

VIDEO: Joe Philbin's Locker Room Speech

CLICK HERE to see Joe Philbin's post game locker room speech after the victory over Atlanta

Sunday, September 22, 2013

NSFW: Brent Grimes Wife shows Atlanta who is #1

Former Falcons CB Brent Grimes was happy to beat his old team today. His wife after the game gave Atlanta the double salute!

CLICK HERE to see

FALCONS vs DOLPHINS PREDICTION

Ok, so the Dolphins finally have their first home game of the season this week after being road warriors and winning the first 2 weeks in Cleveland and Indy. While the first two opponents were formidable this week its a step up in class for the Fins. Atlanta, even with all of their injuries, is a step above both the Browns and Colts. The Fins will be really tested this week for sure.

WHEN ATLANTA HAS THE BALL: The Dolphins defense is catching some big breaks this week. The Falcons will be without Steven Jackson at running back and their starting left tackle Sam Baker. Not to mention superstar WR Roddy White is less than 100% and will be very limited. Even Julio Jones is banged up. I don't expect the Falcons to run the ball much at all with any success vs the Dolphins front seven (even with Soliai OUT this week) but Atlanta and Matt Ryan could have some success in the air. It's up to Miami to bring the heat and sack Matt Ryan early and often. With no Sam Baker there is no excuse...the Fins must get to the QB. The Dolphins will be without CB Dimitri Patterson but they are getting Jamar Taylor and Will Davis back this week and the two rookies will play for the first time this season. For Miami's defense to have success they must slow down Tony Gonzalez and Harry Douglas in my opinion. Jones will do his thing, White is banged up and might not make a huge impact. So its about keeping Gonzalez and Douglas in check and not letting those guys have big days to pick up the slack for not having Jackson and having a banged up White.

WHEN MIAMI HAS THE BALL: The Dolphins catch another break here as Atlanta is without linebacker Sean Weatherspoon this week. When Miami has the ball they need to keep doing what they are doing. The Falcons are not an overwhelming defense by any means and with the injuries they have Miami could have a lot of success against them. I expect to see a heavy dose of Lamar Miller this week. In fact I could see this as a coming out party for Miller so to speak and him having a very big day. Maybe 100+ yards and two touchdowns. Wallace might be in for a performance like he had Week 1 more so than what he did last week vs Indy. Samuel is a top flight NFL CB and he could blanket Wallace and shut him down this week. Which means Hartline, Gibson, and Clay must step up! If there is a god in heaven Charles Clay keeps playing like he has the first 2 games and continues to improve and produce. He is the key to the Fins offense in 2013. But as with every game this season the key to the Fins offense is their offensive line. They must protect Tannehill. Tannehill is getting hit far far too much and already has a small injury.Tannehill cannot continue to get hit like he is getting hit at this rate or he won't make it through the season.

So, i have been pretty spot on with my predictions the first couple weeks almost nailing the score exactly. This weeks game is tougher though. IF Atlanta was healthy I would pick them to win as I think they have superior talent across the board. Atlanta has so many injuries though, I mean so many injuries that it has leveled this game out some. I see the Dolphins being able to run the ball and control the clock keeping Matt Ryan on the sideline and I see the Dolphins taking advantage of Atlanta not having Sam Baker this week and putting lots of pressure on Ryan. Miami sneaks out a win   MIAMI 26   ATLANTA 20

Saturday, September 21, 2013

The Saturday Night Quarterback

Tomorrow's game against the Atlanta Falcons kicks-off at 4:30 pm and the start time reminds me that the Dolphins owner Stephen Ross' preference is to have late starting home games to save the fans from the elements. Now I don’t know if tomorrow’s start time has to do with Ross’ desires or because they are playing an NFC team at home, but if you ask the true fans I believe they would rather sacrifice their comfort and have the 1 p.m. heat be a home field advantage for their fins. This is one of many issues that Miami neglects to control, resulting in a lost advantage. Another advantage that Miami fails to take advantage of at is to start the game with possession of the football. I stated last week Miami should not defer if they win the coin toss. They did defer and gave the Colts the ball. It ended up working out ok with the missed field goal. Again, this week against the Falcons and Matt Ryan at the helm, the Fins should not defer and they should attempt to be the first team to put a score on the board. This creates a sense of urgency and most teams will feel the need to pass the ball. Especially since Atlanta’s starting RB is out, Miami’s defensive front will be able to put pressure on Matt Ryan. Finally, I’d like to bring up Ryan Tannehill. I think Ryan Tannehill can be the Dolphins’ franchise Q.B., but being a franchise Q.B. doesn’t guarantee playoff success. Alex Smith has been a franchise Q.B. for two teams, but led neither teams to the Super Bowl. What I’d like to see from Ryan Tannehilll tomorrow and developed through the rest of the season is his pocket presence and his ability to extend plays. The problem with Alex Smith, who I like and wanted to get through free-agency, is he lacks big play making ability. Most big plays come from the Q.B. extending the play by moving through and out of the pocket, like Big Ben Roethlisburgh and Mike Wallace did when they played together. Alex Smith for the most part, even though he has been successful statistically speaking, hasn’t won the big game because he lacks big play making ability. The question for tomorrow is: Is Ryan Tannehill going to play with pocket presence, extend plays, and make some big plays or will the coaching staff handcuff him again? Tanny has both the elusiveness and tools to extend and make big plays, but will he? I look forward to finding out tomorrow.

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
@carlccrowley

Are the Dolphins For Real?

For the first time in a long time Dolphins fans have a reason to be excited for Sunday.  For the first time in a long time the Dolphins are on the national radar.  For the first time in a long time there’s talk of a new team in charge in the AFC East.  All of this is great to hear but let me ask you this, are they for real?

As the Dolphins prepare to take the field tomorrow for their home opener against the Falcons they are in the national spotlight after a 2-0 start.  Sure starting 2-0 is impressive especially with both of those wins on the road, but this is where the schedule gets serious.  Back to back games with NFC power houses with  the Falcons on Sunday and then in New Orleans next Monday night.  After that they host the defending Super Bowl champion Ravens who granted don’t look like the same team but by no means will be a push over.  If the Dolphins can win 2 out of these next 3 games then maybe it’s time to start buying into the hype.

As expected the Dolphins defense and the front seven especially, has been very impressive so far.   Through two games they have the second ranked defense in the league behind the Seahawks and their 9 sacks rank 4th in the league.  All three of their prized free agent acquisitions on the defensive side of the ball have paid dividends so far as well.  Dannell Ellerbe and Philip Wheeler lead the team in tackles with 20 and 18 respectively and Brent Grimes’s second half interception last week of Andrew Luck proved to be one of the biggest plays down the stretch in the win over the Colts.

While last year the Falcons were the best team in the NFC right now they are not a healthy ball club.  Running back Steven Jackson has a thigh injury and will not play this week along with starting OLB Sean Weatherspoon who was placed on IR this week.  Along with Jackson there are other injury concerns on the offensive side of the ball as both star wide receivers Roddy White and Julio Jones are listed as questionable and White’s nagging ankle injury has certainly slowed him down the first 2 weeks.  That being said Miami also has concerns about its own number one wide receiver as Mike Wallace is listed as questionable after tweaking his groin this week in practice.


What does this mean for the Dolphins?  They could be catching the Falcons at the perfect time.  Remember in the NFL it’s not always about who you play but more so when you play them.  Granted if Wallace is out it will be a hit to the Dolphins offense but the Falcons can still be beat, and if they do so we’ll see you next week in New Orleans for the biggest game for this franchise in 10 years and that’s something exciting to think about. 

Billy Dowling
@BDowling33

Friday, September 20, 2013

Dolphins, Falcons Match up Plagued with Injuries

Injuries have been the main focus of this week’s match up between the Atlanta Falcons and the Miami Dolphins.

The Falcons have suffered the most significant injuries, losing 5 starters in their Week 2 win against the St. Louis Rams. LB Sean Weatherspoon, DE Kory Biermann, and FB Bradie Ewing all suffered season ending injuries. RB Steven Jackson will miss two weeks to four weeks with a thigh injury. CB Asante Samuel also suffered a thigh injury and is listed as questionable, along with WR Roddy Wright (ankle), and WR Julio Jones (knee). All three are expected to play. 

Miami Dolphins Battle Injuries

On the flip side, The Dolphins are battling their own injuries. They will be without DT Paul Soliai (knee) and CB Dimitri Patterson (groin), both of which missed significant practice time this week. QB Ryan Tannehill, who suffered a (throwing) shoulder injury, was limited on Wednesday but fully participated in Friday's practice. Four other starters, WR Mike Wallace (groin), C Mike Pouncy (ankle), FS Chris Clemons (hamstring), and LB Koa Misi (knee) showed up on today's injury report. All are expected to play. 


Clearly the Dolphins’ injuries are not as serious as the Falcons’, but this team severely lacks depth. The Dolphins are one or two injuries away in the secondary or offensive line that could hurt the team’s chances of making a run.  


UPDATE: Falcons LT Sam Baker ruled out for Sunday's game with a foot injury. 






Thursday, September 19, 2013

Opportunity Knocking

 "The key to success in life is opportunity" - Mike Ditka

Make no mistake about it, your Miami Dolphins have a giant opportunity staring them dead in the face.  Coming into the season many predicted the Fins to be 1-1 or even worse 0-2 at this point.  But for the 1st time in a long time we are 2-0 heading into a winnable week 3 at home.

Yes I said winnable.  Don't misinterpret what I'm saying, this won't be a walk in the park.  The Falcons are a hell of a team: A playoff team; a team that won their first 8 games last year; a team that's built for the Super Bowl.  In the last 5 years the Falcons have finished with a winning record.  There is no doubt this Atlanta team is in the upper echelon of the NFL.

Why we can win:

1. Injuries - This isn't a strategy or a way anyone would like to win a game, but right now the Falcons are laden with injuries, which bolds well for the Dolphins.

Baker, Sam T Knee/Foot DNP
Dent, Akeem LB Shoulder LP
Jackson, Steven RB Hamstring  Out
Jones, Julio WR Knee LP
Konz, Peter C Knee LP
Matthews, Cliff DE Neck LP
Samuel, Asante CB Thigh DNP
White, Roddy WR Ankle DNP

White has been used as a decoy the firsts two games due to a lingering injury.  It could be huge for the fins if White and Samuel are out, but I expect them both to play, although not at full strength.

2.  Joe Philbin - At this point most teams get ahead of themselves thinking they are better then they are.  Seems as Joe cool is not letting two wins distract the team and is keeping them focused on one game at a time.

3.  Home field advantage -As I write this I'm on a plane on my way to south beach.  It will be hot, it's a 4pm game and this is our home opener.  Last year we beat the Raiders at our home opener, this year we need to beat the Falcons.  To do so we need every man, women and child to be screaming at the top of their lungs.  We need to make it difficult for Ryan to call plays or change them at the line.  It looks as if we are going to sell out so we should be able to get loud and make Matt Ryan hate playing in Miami!

I'm gonna steal my last line from Eminem. We're gonna rock this house until we knock it down, So turn the volume loud, cause it's mayhem 'til the a.m.

Prediction:
Dolphins 27
Falcons   24

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

FOX Announcers for Falcons vs Dolphins

Chris Meyers and Time Ryan will call this Sunday's action on FOX

Are the stars aligning for 3-0?



Last week leading up to the Dolphins 24-20 win in Indianapolis, I told anyone that would listen that a win over the Colts on the road, and a 2-0 record would set us up perfectly going into as tough a 3 game stretch as you will get in the NFL. 

With home games against the High-Octane offense of Atlanta and World Champions Baltimore, as well as a prime-time road game in the intimidating environment of the Superdome in New Orleans, we needed to win early.

Of course, I was kidding myself to think that 2-0 would somehow mean less emphasis and pressure on winning the next 3 games. Success breeds confidence, and confidence breeds greed.

Can we go 3-0 against Atlanta? Are we really making that leap as a team to the next level after such a long period of mediocrity? There can be no more perfect test than a reported full house of expectant and re-energized fans, against an elite opponent.

As I write this Tuesday morning reports have surfaced that after losing key starters Kroy Biermann and Bradie Ewing for the season yesterday, Atlanta are now likely without bulldozer running back Steven Jackson for Sunday whilst veteran WR Roddy White remains dinged up but likely to play.

BUT…you knew there was a but coming…what if this is another false dawn?

So, we’re 2-0, confident, QB on the rise, weapons to throw to, Defense playing well, sell out crowd, depleted Atlanta team, gaining national attention and admiration…what can possibly go wrong? Right?

We’ve seen this script before, this game has suddenly become a litmus test for a embittered and skeptical (under the surface) fan base…the stars are aligning for us to really challenge one of the league’s best on our own turf and go 3-0, time to prove that this year is different, that this team is different.

If we can perform, show the fans in attendance that it’s worth coming back a fortnight later, we could be on the cusp of something special. Is it the end of the world if we lose? No, but a win would be huge.

The one thing we don’t want to hear Sunday evening is…”same old Dolphins”.