Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Tuesday News and Notes

-The Dolphins still have to cut 2 more players by 4pm today. One has to think that they may be trying to swing another trade today to get something back for a player they have to release. Positions of strength are offensive line and wide receiver so players like Jamil Douglas or Griff Whalen could be on the block and could net a 7th round pick in return.

-The injury to Kenny Stills it is being reported by ESPN as not being serious.  Appears to be that his back locked up during a play yesterday. Early reports are he won't miss the regular season opener but we should learn more today about his condition.  UPDATE: Still practiced today for Miami and appears ok.

-No word on the Laremy Tunsil injury but it was also reported that it isn't serious as well. UPDATE: Tunsil said today he will play Thursday vs the Titans

-DeVante Parker's injury is a different story as this could be something that prevents him from playing week one. No word on what the injury is but it may be a hamstring from unconfirmed reports. We should know more this afternoon.

-The Chris McCain trade was a stroke of brilliance by the Dolphins front office yesterday. Instead of just cutting McCain, like they were going to do,  the Dolphins got something in return for him. I know McCain was very popular with the Dolphins fan base as he interacted with a lot of fans on social media but at the end of the day he was a marginal NFL player who wasn't going to make this team. During his time in Miami McCain did little to nothing on the field and he wasn't getting better as time went on. He is too small to be a quality every down defensive end and too big to be a quality outside linebacker. Not to mention McCain was at the center of the drama last year in which he was rumored to "leak" (and also embellish in regards to practice squad players paychecks) what was said one day at practice between Tannehill and some of the defensive players which started a week long distraction for the organization. While it was never 100% confirmed McCain was the source that leaked that story to the press, many unconfirmed reports say it was him who was the leak. Whcih didn't sit well with people in the Dolphins front office. Regardless of that the long and short of it is Chris McCain was buried on the Miami depth chart at defensive end and was not going to make the Dolphins roster. In New Orleans McCain has a shot to contribute and make their 53 man roster. The fact the Dolphins will get a 7th round pick in return for him should McCain make the Saints roster is only a bonus.

--Some website housekeeping, we should have a new episode of the DolphinsTalk.com Podcast up later this week. Due to an illness to our host Randy, we couldn't record an episode last week. Randy is on the mend and feeling better and we should have a new episode up this weekend. Get Well Soon Randy! I will also have up by this weekend my 2016 NFL Predictions. Last year I nailed Denver in the Super Bowl and correctly predicted 7 of the 12 playoff teams. I am putting my predictions together and should have that up for you by the weekend as well. We will also have some new features up on the site for this upcoming season. I will be doing a Gambling column each week with College and Pro picks against the spread which is something many of you have been asking for. Some other new features are in the works as well which should be interesting. Our website is growing rapidly and we will continue to grow and bring new features in the coming weeks and months.

Don't forget to follow us on Facebok at https://www.facebook.com/DolphinsTalk/

Monday, August 29, 2016

Chris McCain traded to Saints

Image result for chris mccain

Today, the Miami Dolphins trimmed the roster to 77 today with the trade of Chris McCain.  According to multiple reports, the Dolphins were planning on cutting McCain.  An undrafted free agent 2 years ago, McCain had an up and down start to his career.  He was in flux of moving between DE and OLB.  He started flashing signs of becoming a much better DE and showed teams, such as the Saints, he had some value.  The Dolphins received a conditional 7th round pick for McCain, where he will be potentially a starter with the Saints.  This move isn't puzzling, as Jeff Ireland and Dan Campbell, who praised him highly last season, are currently with the Saints.

The Dolphins have until Tuesday at 4pm to release 2 more players to comply with the NFL rules of 75 bodies for the last preseason game.


VIDEO: Jarvis Landry Training Videos

Saturday, August 27, 2016

Miami Dolphins Starting to Release Players

The Dolphins have to trim their roster to 75 players by Tuesday August 30th at 4pm and the first round of cuts is taking place this afternoon. We will update this list throughout the day so keep coming back for updates.

LB - Akil Blount
C/G Ruben Carter
WR A.J. Cruz
LS Ryan DiSalvo
WR Matt Hazel
TE Gabe Hughes
K Marshall Koehn

CB Al Louis-Jean
G Vinston Painter
WR Brandon Shippen

CB Brandon Harris

Belief in Tanne-Gase

It's a marathon, not a sprint for a successful NFL season.  Luck and health all play into who holds the trophy in February and I would submit that we appear to be lucky at the moment with the hiring of Adam Gase and the coaching staff. As well as appearing to be lucky with personnel management decisions.

First, focusing on Thursday night, we can finally breathe a bit easier knowing that the offensive will not be the lowest producing and highest sack yielding unit in the history of the game.  We learned that (qualifying that pre season W-L record is meaningless) it has the potential to be the SUCCESSFUL version of the fast breaking West Coast style unit we have been expecting around here for years.  Coach Gase appeared to be in control of calling the game and knew what he wanted to do and Ryan Tannehill seemed to feel confident and in control. He was accurate, fast (running),  respected, and organized (unlike in the Giants game and to a lesser extent vs Dallas.)  The Offensive Line appeared to be improved and in synch as well. I can foresee a strong future with Steen anchoring us for many years to come. Hopefully injury prone and finesse Mike Pouncey's days could be numbered at  center.  Dont get me wrong I love the guy, but we have been losers with him at  center and wont cry to develop a younger and stronger HOG for the future. 

Continuing on the offense, I think the cameo by Foster only solidified the front office faith in signing him to a low risk and cheap deal.  It is plainly obvious in his limited action that he is the number one RB on the team and he is obviously confident in his ability as a successful veteran. He knows where he needs to be and is just a natural at the position. Foster will prove to be a phenomenal pass catching safety valve out of the one back set and Tannehill can throw to him all day long and watch for serious YAC and TD's!

Love Jay Ajai and want him to be great, but Foster is the man of the moment.  If that works out for us, watch out!  Could be season defining situation and the front office will appear to have made a genius decision, no matter what Lamar Miller does this season.  They saved a ton of money and have the naturally better (albeit more worn) player. Again, this would be filed under the luck and health headlines.

 Back to Gase, assuming all continues on the up arrow and the kid appears to have "IT" (passion, drive, enjoyment of his job, no fear) we will be lucky if it all continues and he remains steadfast and true to himself in the face of the many adversity's sure to arise over the coming six months (yes I said six, not four.)  We are lucky to have Tannehill behind center and I cannot think of many teams (maybe ten, that would not swap their starter for ours at this point).  The receivers still leave him with less than 100 percent success though. Devante Parker had a drop, Cameron Jordan has had multiple drops, even Jarvis Landry had a drop. These guys need to ball out to make it all work.

As far as the defense, it appears to be a longer term project at the moment as we have yet to see Xavien Howard be available, and the defensive line has to be brought along slowly.  However, after watching the Miko Grimes debacle last night and Jamar Taylor in Cleveland, I feel no worse off with enduring the growing pains of my younger, larger studs, than having ridden another year of Miko and Mediocre.  Jamar Taylor was never going to be the answer as well as he was a marginal to bad player.  Again, if we get lucky here and things work out in our favor for a change the front office again will look like geniuses.

As far as the linebackers it was good to see good Koa Misi play well. I'm not crazy about the guy as he is far from a playmaker but we need a big year from him.  I think Kiko Alonso is settling in and I  still like Neville Hewitt and Mike Hull. We will be ok at linebacker as long as the defensive line performs to expectation. I love the depth along the defensive line with Warmsley settling in and playing well. I'm excited for the future of this team and realistically, not expecting anything other than a complete turnaround in team psychology, philosophy, and respect this year knowing and feeling that better times are just around the corner.

Today's prediction for the season from me is 2nd place in the AFC EAST and 9-7.  After a 1-3 start we begin to gel by mid season and finish a strong 8-4 and have a shot at the second wild card spot and could be a real threat to get to the conference championship game.

Thursday, August 25, 2016

2016 Season Prediction

Here it is.  The dreadful season prediction.  I spoke many times on the podcast about how I feel about preseason predictions.  At this point, I feel it is now time.  For those of you who are squeamish, you may want to stop reading now (I am only kidding).

I truly feel this season may not be as bad as many of the national outlets are predicting.  Before I get into each game, with a brief summary and score prediction, here are some of the reasons I feel confident in improvement this year:

1.  Adam Gase:  He has a fire that hasn't been shown here since the beginning of the Tony Sparano era (really just 2008 season).  Gase is confident in his ability to get the most out of his players, particularly the QB, which leads me to..

2.  Ryan Tannehill has best season yet:  I will take the bashing from any of you, but does anybody else see something different in him?  He has more command at the line of scrimmage, his footwork is steadily improving AND he is in sync with his WR.  If I had to drop a way too early prediction, Tannehill goes for:  4,350 yards, 32 TDs and 14 INT.  Passer rating and completion percentage will take care of itself, if these numbers hold true.

3.  Defensive front 4 will have 45 sacks this season:  I know, we haven't seen it yet, but I truly feel good about Wake/Williams/Suh/Mitchell or Phillips as major disruptors.  My worry is the guys behind them that cannot tackle.  I hope it shores up before Seattle.

Now that I got that out of the way, here is my season predictions:

Week 1-  @ Seattle - OUCH, not the place you really wanted the season to start.  Seattle record at home since 2012 is a whopping 27-5 (.843).  This is asking a lot for a young football team with a new coach : Seattle 27  Miami 17  (0-1)

Week 2- @ New England- Thanks NFL, second week in a row to a very tough place to play, at a stadium that Dolphins haven't won in, since 2008 (Wildcat game).  Jimmy Garappolo starts, but Miami takes advantage of good weather and no Brady.  I feel an upset here: 
Miami 27   New England 24   (1-1)

Week 3- vs Browns- Welcome to Hard Rock Stadium!  Miami opens their home schedule with a Browns team looking for an identity under Hue Jackson.  Dolphins put up points and take it at their newly finished $500 million dollar stadium:
Miami 30   Browns 21    (2-1)

Week 4- @ Cincinnati- Thursday night prime time game.  The last time these two met, we had a Wake off.  But with a healthy Andy Dalton and AJ Green, the Dolphins may meet their match, even though they  have won the last 2 games against the Bengals
Cincinnati 24   Miami 20  (2-2)

Week 5- vs Tennessee- Miami absolutely obliterated the Titans on their home field last year.  Mariota has another year of experience and the team added pretty good depth.  This is going to be a lot closer than last years game:
Miami 20   Tennessee 17  (3-2)

Week 6- vs Pittsburgh-  I have teetered on this game since looking at the schedule.  Steelers defense and OL are glaring weakness, but they have Big Ben, the best WR in the league in Antonio Brown, and Le'veon Bell will be in, this smells like trouble:
Pittsburgh 34  Miami 28  (3-3)

Week 7- vs Buffalo-  Ah.. the dreaded Buffalo Bills  They have quite frankly, mentally own the Miami Dolphins as of late.  Tyrod Taylor and Sammy Watkins put a whoopin on this team last year.  If healthy, the Bills should be able to put points up, but injuries on defense could mean they didn't put up enough in this game:
Miami 24   Buffalo 20  (4-3)

Week 8- Bye Week (sit back and relax this week friends)

Week 9- vs New York Jets- The Jets, like the Bills, put a hurting on the Dolphins last year.  Their defensive unit is strong.  I am still unsure of what to make of their offense with Fitzpatrick, does he continue to play well for the Jets?  Time will tell, but a last second field goal costs the Dolphins and important victory
NYJ 23  Miami 21   (4-4)

Week 10- @ San Diego-  We all remember this embarrassing game last season?  With another season in the balance in beautiful SD, Miami takes advantage of not so home field advantage to avenge last years loss:
Miami 27   SD 20  (5-4)

Week 11- @ LA Rams-  Football is back in LA.  The hard knocks featured team this year has a beast at RB in Todd Gurley and quite possibly the best front four on defense in the league.  Can Ryan Tannehill out play any of the Rams 3 QBs, the answer is yes:
Miami 17   LA 13  (6-4)

Week 12- vs San Francisco-  Chip Kelly brings the niners across country for a 1pm start time.  With uncertainty all around that franchise, the Dolphins bring home their 3rd victory in a row:
Miami 27  SF  21   (7-4)

Week 13- @ Baltimore-  This team has given Miami fits.  Just can't seem to find a win against these guys since the infamous 2007 win.  IF Flacco is healthy, I give the nod to Baltimore.  They just seem to find a way to win games against Miami.  And being a cold winter day, it doesn't bode well:
Baltimore 21   Miami 17  (7-5)

Week 14- vs Arizona-  Carson Palmer, Larry Fitzgerald, David Johnson on offense.  Patrick Peterson and Honey badger on defense.  This is a tough one to get at home:
Arizona 28  Miami 20   (7-6)

Week 15- @ NYJ-  Primetime Saturday night game a week before Christmas.  Miami finds rhythm and finds an upset on the road.  We will likely thank Arian Foster for this grind-it-out victory on the road:
Miami 20   NYJ 17   (8-6)

Week 16- @ Buffalo- The house of horrors for Miami.  I personally travel to see this game every year and every year I leave disappointed.  I don't believe I will feel much different:
Buffalo 28   Miami 14  (8-7)

Week 17- vs New England-  Remember earlier I have Miami beating the Patriots on the road?  Do you also remember just above this comment about the house of horrors?  Tom Brady should be playing and he is 0-3 vs the Dolphins on the road in the last 3 seasons.  Let's make it 0-4 and secure a winning season for the first time since 2008:
Miami 28  NE 27  (9-7)

Yes I have high optimism, yes, I have them sweeping the Patriots.  Am I wrong?  Probably.  Is this record unrealistic?  We will see.  But be rest assured, this team will be a different group to watch offensively, if the defense plays up to par, 9-7 is not a stretch.  It is a realistic possibility.  Ryan Tannehill keeps his job as QB of this franchise and Adam Gase is off to a great start. 



Preseason Game 3: Atlanta Falcons @ Miami Dolphins

Atlanta Falcons (1-1) @ Miami Dolphins (1-1)
Camping World Stadium- Orlando, FL
Kickoff 8:00PM

Announcers:  Mike Tirico and Chris Collinsworth

We have reached the pinnacle of the preseason.  Week 3.  This game is a tune up game for the starters and one of the final chances to make an impression.  While many will not focus on this game, I, for one will be very intrigued.  This is technically a home game (Hard Rock Stadium is not 100% ready for this game, but will be on September 1st vs Titans).  There are many things to watch for in tonight's game, so let's get you primed with things to watch for:

1)  Starting offense getting off to a fast start- we have witnessed slow starts in both weeks on offense.  The Giants started off leading 10-0, Cowboys 14-0.  The Falcons have arguably the best WR in the league in Julio Jones and he will be tough to handle.  I expect the Dolphins to start as they did last week (3-5 yard play on first down) to ease into the game and get the offense going.  A first down is critical tonight, points on their opening drive is critical tonight as well.  The defense playing from behind last week didn't look good.  In fact, it looked like the same defense as last season.  The offense needs to put up more points than the defense allows.  NFL 101.

2)  Starting defense needs to make stops/plays- in the first two weeks, the starting defensive unit has not been very good.  They have given up over 300 yards rushing in the first two preseason games.  If you cannot stop the run, you will not be very good.  I get it, vanilla schemes, not prepared for opponent, but tackling doesn't need schemes, it is technique.  This unit lacks that.  If the guys can wrap up their tackles, the defense will indeed get off the field.  Force the issue tonight, make plays and we may get a glimpse of what this defense really can do.  But it starts with the basics.

3)  Laremy Tunsil- I will be the first to admit, I wasn't thrilled when the pick was announced.  Over time, I liked the move more.  Now, I LOVE IT.  Tunsil has played 90 snaps in the preseason, more than any other player on the team.  He struggled at Guard throughout camp and was second team until a promotion last week, which FINALLY bumped Dallas Thomas off the starting unit.  From those 90 snaps, Tunsil has not given up a SINGLE QB PRESSURE.  Tannehill was upright last week, and he had a clean pocket, albeit for 2 plays.  Watch for Tunsil to continue to develop.

4)  Linebackers-  This has been a sore subject for me on the podcast weekly.  The starting unit of Kiko Alonso, Jelani Jenkins and Koa Misi just flat out hasn't worked in either preseason game.  they cannot get off their blocks and they cannot tackle.  These 3 need to step it up.  Their play is vital for the wide 9 defense to work, and it will not work if the play of these guys doesn't get going.  A whiff tonight so to speak may lead to changes, as cuts are on the horizon this week.  Let's see how this unit works tonight and if a week of tackling drills helped.

I am looking forward to the prime time game tonight.  Miami needs to show the NFL, the fan base and a national audience that this is a team that can be on the rise.  Tackling opposing players and putting up points with the first unit is a great way to start. 

Make sure you look for me on Periscope at halftime and after the game for brief analysis and opinion of how things went down this evening.


Tuesday, August 23, 2016

The New & Improved Offensive Line Won't be an Issue in 2016

What I saw in the preseason game vs Dallas last week was that the Dolphins offensive line will be heads and shoulders better this upcoming year than it was last year. Now, assuming Mike Pouncey doesn't miss more than just one regular season game and no other starter suffers a season ending injury, what we saw last week was an offensive line unit that kept defenders off Ryan Tannehill and gave him time to throw. (I am also assuming that Jermon Bushrod wins the starting RG spot as I think he showed more promise at guard in 2 quarters than Turner and Thomas have showed in 2+ years)

Yes its just the preseason but it was clear as day that when Dallas Thomas and Billy Turner were replaced with Laremy Tunsil and Jermon Bushrod guess what, Ryan Tannehill had a clean pocket to make throws. And make throws he did leading two touchdown drives and third touchdown drive would have happened if Jordan Cameron didn't drop an easy very catch-able ball.

Laremy Tunsil
The Dolphins fixed their guard problem on the offensive line by removing them totally and starting 4 offensive tackles around a center. Guard problem solved, we don't play no guards. Who needs stinkin guards?!

Branden Albert, Laremy Tunsil, Jermon Bushrod, and JuWuan James...4 offensive tackles, 2 pro bowlers, 3 guys who were picked in Round 1 of the NFL draft. Those 4 next to a pro bowl center and Ryan Tannehill will have all day to throw in 2016. Offensive Tackles are pass blockers first and foremost and the Dolphins have 4 elite (yes I said elite) pass blockers with that group.

Now, the downside here is the run blocking might be utter garbage. Not one of those 4 are known for their run blocking and two of which (Tunsil and Bushrod) are trying to run block from a new position they are just learning. But there are ways around this problem and I will give some examples.

1) The Dolphins must utilize their "12 Personnel" formation on offense a lot this year. They must get Dion  Simms who is a beast of a run blocker on the field with Jordan Cameron at the same time with a two tight end-one RB set. Adding two more blockers on the offensive line but eligible receivers as well will prevent teams from loading up with 8 or 9 in the box since the two tight ends have to be accounted for in the passing game. This will make it easier for the poor run blocking offensive line to block and create space for the running back.

2) Sub in Billy Turner for Bushrod on obvious running downs. Yes the Dolphins want to play fast and huddle as little as possible, but when you have a 3rd and 1 or 3rd and 2 and you want to just ram it in there and run it up the gut, sub in Turner for a few plays. Yes it sounds too obvious, and its telegraphing, but sometimes you just need to keep it simple.  Turner's issues aren't with run blocking it's just that he can't be trusted in the passing game and he has gotten Tannehill killed one too many times.

Jermon Bushrod
With all of this said, I am fine with this offensive line heading into 2016 because they will give Tannehill time to pass the ball. If you give Tannehill time with this group of WR's I think the Fins will score points and lots of them this year. The NFL is an offensive league and even above that its a Pass-Happy league. Pass blocking is first and foremost for any offensive line unit. If you can keep your quarterback upright and un-touched so he can get the ball in the hands of fast and dangerous WR's, you will in this league and win consistently.

If this offensive line unit can't run block at a high level, I can live with it and as I stated there are ways around that. Through creative personal groupings and play calling. You can't hide poor pass blocking, but you can hide poor run blocking on the offensive line.

So sleep well Dolphins fans heading into the 2016 season. The offensive line unit looks to be fixed. Spend your time worrying about other matters with this roster. Like how the cornerback position is a mess and how we all hope Tony Lippet graduated and got a degree from Michigan St so he has something to fall back on.

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Random Thoughts

21 days....but who is counting?  Pouncey is a setback to the gelling of the Offensive line, but hopefully Steen can step in until Pouncey recovers.

-I for one am realistic about the results of this season as there is too much youth both in talent and coaching to realistically expect great things.

-I am on board, though, with the fact that another good draft featuring defense next April will put us in position of consistent contention in years 2017 and beyond.

-I must go on record as a #17 supporter and I think there are many teams who would be happy to have him instead of who they might be trotting out opening day.

-I think improvement is in the air and growth inevitable for the young O, particularly the WR's, it might be a long season and I expect them to come together more toward the middle of the season than out of the gate.

-Many thanks to Mike Oliva for his invitation to participate and his patience in helping get me squared away as a millennial techie I am not....looking forward to Thursday night.

Have a Great Monday!

Takeaways After Preseason Game 2

Takeaway number 1 and most important for Dolphins fans: I thought Ryan Tannehill was outstanding before being removed. All I wanted to see, other than him staying healthy of course, was for him to make good solid throws in different circumstances and situations. He made 4 throws that stood out to me. Obviously the roll out bomb to Stills was a fantastic sign, the first down throw on 3rd and 8 to Parker while getting drilled in the chin was a great throw, the first touchdown throw to Stills was a bullet on a well run play, and the fade route for the second touchdown to Stills could not have been placed any better.

That was all I needed to see. 4 dimes. Not to mention the pinpoint perfect slant he threw to Jordan Cameron who dropped it in the endzone. He came out healthy and confident. Great game for Ryan.

Takeaway number 2 was on the receivers and TE. Kenny Stills looked great, and appears to be headed for a much bigger role in this offense under Gase. Cameron's drop was the only memorable play he had the whole half, which is not a good sign. The TE clearly need to be more involved (if they're talented enough to do so, which is a problem in and of itself).

Takeaway number 3 was the OL; Throughout the first quarter and into quarter 2, Jermon Bushrod and Laremy Tunsil were the Guards with the starters and they pass blocked exceptionally well as a unit. Great to see Tannehill have time to step into throws and look comfortable. The run blocking was tremendously suspect, the run plays were slow to develop and Ajayi and Foster couldn't really show much. Not quite sure why Billy Turner and Dallas Thomas then got their shot with the rest of the starters instead of the second team.
Pouncey's injury is obviously a devastating blow to a unit that needed maximum stability. We can only hope he's able to give it a go for the opener which is 20 days away.

Finally, I don't have to say the defense was terrible. Anyone watching saw that. I'm not overly concerned YET, because I think three potential starters were missing in Wake, Mitchell, and possibly Xavien Howard. The LB situation got no clearer, the missed tackles were scary bad, and Mario Williams was a no show. I'm just hoping the intensity and the complexity of the defense goes way up when Week 1 rolls around.

DolphinsTalk.com Podcast for August 21st, 2016

The latest edition of the DolphinsTalk.com Podcast is up. In this weeks edition the boys are back with a recap of the Dolphins-Cowboys preseason game from Friday night. They get into who looked good and helped themselves in making this team or winning a starting job and who didn't look so good vs Dallas. After the re-cap of the Dallas game they get right into a preview of the next (and most important) preseason game next week vs Atlanta.

Make sure you Like, Subscribe and come back next week as we do a weekly Miami Dolphins podcast. Please contact us at @rjclifestyle @ternisse13 and @dolphinstalk and use the hashtag #dolphinstalk



Also a BONUS FEATURE: If you want to watch VIDEO of  EVERY Ryan Tannehill Pass from the Week 2 Preseason game vs Dallas CLICK HERE

Thursday, August 18, 2016

Preseason week 2: Miami Dolphins @ Dallas Cowboys

After a 27-10 victory in  Met Life Stadium last Friday night, the Miami Dolphins travel to Dallas to take on the Cowboys in a prime time game on NFL Network.  Kickoff is at 8pm.  As many of us felt great about the victory, there were still many questions heading into week 2.  Here are a few questions that hope to get answered in this game:

1)  Will the first string offense put it together? Can Ryan Tannehill get a grasp of this offense before the all important 3rd preseason game?

2)  Will we finally see the starting offensive line, featuring Laremy Tunsil featured at LG?

3)  With Suh, Wake, Mario, Reshad and Byron Maxwell taking the field, how will the defense look in limited time?

4)  Can the LB unit step up and stop Elliot and the Dallas rushing attack?

Typically in the second preseason game, the offense will typically play at least 2-3 series.  Of course, this is predicated on if there is any success in any of those drives.  Last week, Miami's starting offense went 3 and out, a common theme we saw last season, on both their possessions.  It took until the beginning of the second quarter to get the offense moving.  And when the second and third units got going, they outscored the Giants 27-0, after a 10-0 deficit.  The starting unit has looked better in the final days of training camp, giving hope to the staff, that it will come together this week.  I expect Ryan Tannehill to move the offense more efficiently this week, producing points and getting everyone involved.

This game will also feature Arian Foster, albeit in a very limited role.  Foster has said this week he is looking forward to returning to game action.  I for one, am excited to see what he can bring to this offense.  He is a dynamic runner and a very good pass catching RB.  Jay Ajayi is still number one on the depth chart, but after a poor showing in the first preseason game, he is no longer a lock onto that position.  I expect Foster to get 10 plays on offense in this game, to see how he holds up.

As I mentioned before, the starting defense will get its first look.  Dallas has a formidable offensive line, arguably the best in the league for 3 consecutive seasons.  Suh, Wake, Williams,  Jason and Reshad Jones, along with Maxwell, will all see some time.  What a great test to see what this unit could potentially produce against a great front 5 on the other side.  The defense will still be missing Xavien Howard and newly acquired Chris Culliver, both whom I believe will be fighting for the CB2 spot when both healthy.  The defense looked great last week after the opening drive. Look for more aggressive play from every line of defense.  I also expect a great test for Byron Maxwell, going up against Dez Bryant, who looked un-guardable against the Rams last week.

While many believe these games do not count, they absolutely do matter.  This is a great test for this Dolphins team, leading up to the big week 3 match up on national TV against the Falcons. 


Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Hard Rock Stadium "Rock'n Ceremony"

Executives held a ceremony for the new partnership between the Miami Dolphins and the Hard Rock's Seminole Tribe of Florida today. All the big names at the top came on stage to show their approval and excitement for the future. Everyone who will benefit from the new stadium and this awesome new partnership got some time on stage to express their approval.

Blake James and Bernie Kosar from the University of Miami walked on stage (weirdly while Crank That by Soulja Boy played) to say a few words and take photos. "When you look at this Stadium its unbelievable. I'll say the best in the world, and to call it our home is something that's special for everyone who is part of the University of Miami." said Blake James followed by "We're working to sell this Stadium out every single game." It will be interesting to see how that goes. The Stadium's capacity was planned to be reduced from 76,018 seats to 65,326 seats, all while moving sideline seats 24 feet closer to the field.

Bernie Kosar reminisced about playing with the Dolphins and the first time he met the Seminole Tribe on an airboat ride. He went on about how far they've come, before posing for a photograph while Soulja Boy played over the speakers... again.

Tom Garfinkle then announced that the Brazilian National Soccer team will be playing there 6-7 times in the future. A video of Pele himself was then shown, expressing how excited he is. The International Champions Cup will hold their first game here in 2017 featuring Real Madrid, opponent to be announced.

After that there was a short build up to announcing the Miami Dolphins, during which it was said they will play their 4th preseason game and start the season on time at the stadium. A few Dolphins were then announced and took the stage in a single file line: Executive Vice President of Football Operations Mike Tannenbaum, General Manager Chris Grier, Head Coach Adam Gase, WR Jarvis Landry, Safety Reshad Jones, DT Ndamukong Suh, and Hall of Famer Dan Marino himself. I only saw one problem with this. They took stage while the techno T-Pain remix of the Dolphins fight song played. Played the whole time they took pics too. Yeah. I think we need a fresh fight song.

Mike Tannenbaum expressed his excitement and pride for the new stadium before the host poked at Dan Marino and they all left the stage. The host went on to read off names of local politicians sitting in the audience before it was announced that Pitbull had arrived on scene.

Pitbull took stage saying "Sorry I'm usually the most punctual Cuban in the room." Pitbull has been a partner with Hard Rock for a long time now and says he's been a dolfan since childhood. I'm sure everyone, legit everyone, predicted there will be many concerts held at Hard Rock Stadium. This was confirmed, of course. The new stadium looks like a perfect venue to hold shows.

The room was then cleared out for reporters to take questions and others to join in with the on field presentation, The Hard Rock logo was displayed on every big screen. VIPs then got on top of a stage and smashed guitars into it to mark the occasion.

A very worthy event to mark a fresh chapter in the Miami Dolphins' story. We all have high hopes for a great season in a fresh stadium. Go Phins!

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

It's now Hard Rock Stadium

The Miami Dolphins struck a deal with Hard Rock International, an Orlando based company founded in 1971, to be the official sponsor of Dolphins Stadium. Hard Rock will be the fourth major corporate sponsor to have its name on this stadium. Armando Salguero of the Miami Herald is reporting the deal is for at least 12 years and could be for many more. An official announcement is expected to come out tomorrow.

What does this mean for the Dolphins organization? Well it's only good news. With the economy in a very slow recovery out of a recession getting corporate money for stadium naming rights has been difficult for many teams in various sports. This 12+ year agreement the Dolphins have with Hard Rock will be a consistent source of income for Stephen Ross and the Dolphins organization. Stability is key in sports and nothing is more important than financial stability. No matter how rich Stephen Ross may be it will help keep the Dolphins organization in a healthy state with a long-term deal with a corporate sponsor.

The Dolphins organization has had many up's and down's the past 15-20 years and so has the stadium. They lost a major tenant and their biggest source of income with the Marlins, the stadium has had multiple corporate sponsors, and it has now undergone a major construction renovation. With the $500 million renovation complete and a long-term deal with corporate sponsorship the home of the Dolphins has some stability for many years to come. Hopefully the stability and positive news off the field for the organization starts to carry over on the field for the Miami Dolphins.

Is Arian Foster ready to play this Friday against the Cowboys?

Arian Foster
After being recently cut from the Houston Texans this off season for a torn Achilles that caused him to play only 4 games last season, Foster agreed to a one-year deal with the Phins. Although he has a list of injuries preceding his most recent, coach Adam Gase believes he shows promise and can make a difference on the field along with Jay Ajayi, who he is battling with for a starting position.

So far Foster has missed the first few days of training camp after being put on the physically unable to perform list, but has been practicing with the team for the past two weeks. He was told to sit out our preseason opening game against the Giants, in hopes of letting his health improve. "We just need to be smart." Coach Adam Gase said in a past interview.

More recently Gase said "Right now I'm pretty sure he's going to go, so unless I change my mind for some reason, I want to see him get in there with that first group and get him a feel for how they operate." Which is a great idea. Even with a little over two weeks of training camp he has to learn a new playbook and get accustomed to a new offence. Yet, some will argue it shouldn't an issue, he has been to 4 pro bowls after all.

Bottom line is dont expect to see much of him on the field this Friday. He has a long list of past injuries and doctors have been quoted saying that he straight up destroyed his Achilles tendon. Still, he is a veteran and can do a lot for us, IF he is played the right way and his health is kept in check. He's not a bad player, just an injured one.

Dallas Thomas Just Doesn't Get It

After a poor performance in the first preseason game of the year Dallas Thomas deflected the negative attention and came out swinging against "social media." While Dallas Thomas is correct that social media can be a mean and brutal place, it doesn't change the fact that Dallas Thomas still can't play in this league.

Was it social media's fault that Thomas was getting bull rushed right into the QB on Friday night? Was it social media's fault that Thomas whiffed on blocks Friday night? Was it social media's fault that Thomas has been one of the worst offensive linemen in the NFL the past 2 or 3 years? Yes, we all agree that social media is a mean and awful place at times where people who aren't tough have an outlet to say things they would never say in real life. Totally agree with you there Dallas. But what does that have to do with anything? One has nothing to do with the other.

The criticism of your poor play is totally fair and if the criticism hurts your feelings I'm sorry but that comes with the territory of being an NFL player. It's a public job, you are in the spotlight, you will get attention. If you don't like it, pick a different profession. Go sell cars, go slice meat at a local deli, go work for UPS.

I will say this for Dallas Thomas though what he said/did over the weekend was a stroke of brilliance. To get the attention off his poor play he essentially "blamed social media" and changed the narrative. Now, nobody is talking about his bad play they are talking about Dallas Thomas's comments against social media. Dallas has created a conversation about the evils of social media. It was a total deflection and it worked to perfection. The problem for Dallas is he has another game this week and if history is any indicator Dallas Thomas will most likely be bad in that game. So, who is Dallas Thomas going to blame this week?

I'm sure Dallas Thomas is a nice person and a good American but we can put that aside and criticize his play just like we criticize the play of every other NFL player. And Dallas Thomas just can't play in this league and he sure as hell can't be a starter on an NFL offensive line. There is an old saying; "TAPE DON'T LIE" and the tape on Dallas Thomas the past 3 years is very bad and it was bad again on Friday night. It's not like social media or reporters are picking on Thomas out of the blue, there are legit reasons why he is getting a lot of heat in the press these days. These days Dallas Thomas sounds like someone who can block people on social media but can't block people on a football field and that is not a good sign for his NFL career going forward.

Sunday, August 14, 2016

DolphinsTalk.com Podcast for August 14th w/Special Guest Richmond Webb

The boys are back with the latest episode of the DolphinsTalk.com Podcast and this week we are joined by Miami Dolphins legend Richmond Webb for a special interview in which he talks about his career and his thoughts on the Fins in 2016. The boys also break down all of the action from the Fins first preseason game vs the Giants and they preview the next preseason game vs Dallas as well. We also cover all the news of the week regarding the Miami Dolphins.

Make sure you Like, Subscribe and come back next week as we do a weekly Miami Dolphins podcast. Please contact us at @rjclifestyle @ternisse13 and @dolphinstalk and use the hashtag #dolphinstalk


Thursday, August 11, 2016

Thoughts Going into Preseason Game #1

Miami officially kicks off their season tomorrow with preseason game number one against the NY Giants. If I have learned anything over the years it is that put nothing, and I mean absolutely nothing, into preseason stats or game results. There is no game planning, no scheming, and the games are played the majority of the time by guys who will be slicing meat at your local deli in a couple weeks. And when the starters are on the field, they flat out are just trying not to get hurt.

And we can look back just to last year as proof of this. The entire preseason the Dolphins defensive line was dominate and racking up sacks play after play in practice and preseason games. Hell, they had a joint practice with the Carolina Panthers where the Panthers coaches had to tell the Dolphins coaching staff to pull back a little they weren't getting any work in because our defensive line was just blowing them up every play. Well, how did that turn out in 2015? When the games counted "FOR REAL" the Panthers went 15-1 and made the Super Bowl. The Dolphins were a punching bag for every other team in the NFL and their head coach was fired early in the season. Oh and by the way, once the games counted for real every team blocked Miami's defensive line with ease last year. So again, the preseason showed us and taught us nothing.

If Miami loses 46-0 tomorrow, it means nothing. If they win 52-3 and gain 500 yards offense and have 8 sacks on defense, it means nothing.  Just hope nobody gets hurt.

With that disclaimer out of the way the one thing, and probably the only thing, these games are good for is finding diamonds in the rough. The undrafted guys who step up and make plays or the second and third year guys who are looking to earn a bigger spot in the playing rotation. Guys who can win a roster spot as a back-up and show potential that maybe in a year or two could be a solid contributor. And to find that guy who is going to go from being a back-up to maybe fighting for a starting position. So, who should we be looking out for starting tomorrow night?

Neville Hewitt

Neville Hewitt--Undrafted free agent last year who got on the field in games that mattered and made some plays at times. It's not out of the realm of possibilities that Hewitt could win a starting job over Misi or Jenkins. Hewitt has seen first team reps in practice this past week and a strong preseason and he could win a starting job. Hewitt could put the world on notice tomorrow night that he is a real NFL player who deserves much more playing time in this league. And the guys in front of him on the depth chart aren't world beaters by any means.

Tony Lippett/Bobby McCain--The Dolphins secondary (specifically) the cornerback position is a dumpster fire. After Bryon Maxwell they have literally nobody I would trust to see significant playing time at all. Lippett and McCain both are second year players who are going to have to play a lot this year come September just because they are the best of a bad bunch on this roster at their position. I would think both Lippett and McCain will get a lot of playing time this preseason and will need to play well to prevent the Fins from going "dumpster diving" in a few weeks when cuts start to be made around the league. If Lippett/McCain want to stop the Fins front office from going looking for CB leftovers of other teams who get discarded, they need to play well and it starts tomorrow night.

Billy Turner
Dallas Thomas/Billy Turner--To me this is the end of the road for Dallas Thomas. I know, I know every day in practice he is getting snaps with the first team and his contract is pretty cheap. But I think Thomas is only getting first team reps because the coaches are giving him a final chance to prove he can do anything in this league. Dallas Thomas has always shined in practices and training camps, but when the games get real, he comes up small. Classic case of looks like Tarzan, plays like Jane. A bad preseason by Thomas and he will get the pink slip in a few weeks.  In regards to Billy Turner, it looks like he is the favorite to win the starting right guard spot at the moment. Bushrod is having a hard time moving to guard still and that transition is going poorly, Turner is the best RG on the roster at the moment and needs to play like it. A solid preseason will lock up a starting position for him. A bad preseason for Turner and a year form now Turner will be in the same boat Thomas is currently.

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

EXCLUSIVE VIDEO: Reshad Jones autograph signing last week at Sinbad Sports

Last week was a busy week for the DolphinsTalk.com team. First we covered the Reshad Jones autograph signing event with our partners at Sinbad Sports. Watch the exclusive video below with some of the up close action of what happened at the event. Also on Saturday DolphinsTalk.com Podcast host Randy Savage was live in attendance at the Dolphins VIP Scrimmage event that was moved to inside the bubble because of weather. Here are a few pictures below from the event.

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Dolphins sign CB Chris Culliver

The Dolphins who are in desperate need for help at the CB position today made a move by signing veteran CB Chris Culliver. Culliver is coming off two torn ACL injuries the past 3 years. When healthy Culliver is an above average CB and has had some good seasons in the past with San Francisco.

Culliver can play in the slot as the nickel and on the outside and the boundary. With  young players like Tony Lippett, Bobby McCain, and injured rookie Xavien Howard the Dolphins needed another veteran CB and someone with some experience. Culliver can earn up to $5 million this season with Miami with the contract he signed.

The Dolphins secondary is by far the weakest unit on this team heading into the season. The CB position is very unproven and the veterans they have are coming off either injuries or down seasons. I fully expect Miami's rush defense to improve this year only because teams will not be running the ball a lot vs the Dolphins. I expect teams who play Miami to line up in 4 or 5 WR sets and spread Miami out. Opponents, especially those with quality QB's, will force Miami's 3rd and 4th CB's to make plays and stop them. And if the Dolphins secondary doesn't step up and make plays I expect opponents to pass early and often on the Dolphins this upcoming season.

Check us out on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/DolphinsTalk/

Sunday, August 7, 2016

DolphinsTalk.com Podcast August 7th, 2016

The guys are back with the latest episode of the DolphinsTalk.com Podcast. This week Randy and Tom discuss all of the happenings from the first full week of training camp and Randy got some audio from Saturday Night's Scrimmage inside the bubble from Kenny Stills and Jelani Jenkins.

Make sure you Like, Subscribe and come back next week as we do a weekly Miami Dolphins podcast. Please contact us at @rjclifestyle @ternisse13 and @dolphinstalk and use the hashtag #dolphinstalk

Kenny Stills


Friday, August 5, 2016

Pics From Reshad Jones Autograph Signing At Sinbad's Sports

It was a crazy night at the Tower Shops with Reshad Jones himself showing up to sign fan's prized memorabilia. There was a high energy vibe in the building, with people coming from all around to meet Jones. Even the authenticators were loving it. Here are some of our favorite pictures from the night:

The line of fans waiting for autographs stretched all the way out of the store.

Until Jones arrived, a rapper named Solo kept every one entertained.

Once Jones got there people brought up their prized Dolphins merchandise and got a picture with him.

A fan even brought a custom made black helmet 

It was an awesome event, and be sure to stay in touch for the next signing at Sinbad Sports.

To see more photos head over to our Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/DolphinsTalk/ in the coming days

Chris - @CD_GLUT1

Thursday, August 4, 2016

Reshad Jones Friday August 5th at Sinbad Sports

This Friday August 5th from 7pm-9pm Dolphins Superstar safety Reshad Jones will be at Sinbad Sports signing autographs. Be sure to visit and meet Reshad and get an autograph and picture with him. If you can't make it in person visit www.SinbadSports.com and pre-order your autograph online and it will be shipped to you immediately after the signing. To learn more about Sinbad Sports watch the below video

Sinbad Sports is the official Sponsor of the DolphinsTalk.com Podcast which you can listen to weekly here on the site or on The Sports Brothers Radio Network and SportsOvertime.com