Welcome to Ask Mike – Week 37



From Wyoming


Q – First Merry Christmas to all, and to all a good NFL Play Off run  J


The one matchup that is way in favor of the Bills is their pass rush against our O line.


Do you think we Max protect?


Do something similar to what Brady did to us with the quick passes and WR screens?

( for the record I don’t think we are at a point in our offense to go quick throw )


Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to you and your family Wyoming!


I don’t think we’re going to max protect, we haven’t done it all season.  I think we’re going to stay the course, and hope that the RB’s can chip in and block as they have.  We will have to get rid of the ball quicker for sure, but I don’t think we can turn Tannehill into Tom Brady and his offense in one week.  That’s not how Tannehill operates, and this offense doesn’t either.  We also don’t have the athleticism on our O-line to run effective screens, so look for some short, quick passes to Thigpen, DT, and Miller.


I expect more help wherever Super Mario lines up, so either a RB or maybe the TE will help out.  I know they switch up Mario at RE and sometimes LE, so sometimes we’ll have to help McKinnie, and sometimes Clabo.  No matter what,  our O-line must play better than they did the last time we played them.  I think we’ve turned that corner.  We seem to finally have some cohesiveness with our O-line, and Clabo is playing very confident now, and much better than he was the last time we faced the Bills.  Brenner has been consistent, and Pouncey seems to finally be healthy too, and McKinnie is also doing his job well.  I hope we run the ball well, and the rest will take care of itself.




From OD


Q – MIKE: Miami most likely makes the playoffs as a 6 seed. Go through the teams Miami would most likely play in the first playoff round and give your thoughts regarding how we match up against them. –THANX, OD


Well, there’s so much up on the air right now, and I won’t assume that we’re the 6th seed any more than I would assume we’re IN the playoffs at all.  We can make it as 6th seed, but it’s still possible that we win the Division, which would make us the 3rd seed.  All it takes is 2 losses by the Patriots, and 2 wins by us, and we can take the division.  It’s really not too far fetched.


If we are the 6th seed, we would most likely be facing off against the Denver Broncos.  Still possible the Chiefs get the #1 seed, so we’ll have to wait and see on this as both teams stand at 11-3, with the Broncos holding a better divisional record at 4-1, the Chiefs are 2-3.  The Broncos have the Raiders in OAK the last game of the season, while the Chiefs play the Colts and the Chargers, so if they both finish with a win and a loss, and share the same 12-4 record, the Broncos will be the #1 seed, and we would travel to Denver to play the Broncos.


The Broncos are a tough matchup for any team, but I think our team tends to get gassed, and the Broncos fast paced no huddle offense would be tough for us to handle.  They have a good tandem of RB’s in Knowshon Moreno and Montee Ball, and they have a fantastic stable of WR’s, with Demaryius Thomas, Eric Decker and Wes Welker.  We would need all our DB’s healthy to have a chance, and even then, I still don’t think we match up well.  On defense, the Broncos play a 4-3, with Shaun Phillips (RE) and Derek Wolfe (LE) as the defensive ends, and a good linebacking corp of Wesley Woodyard (MLB),  Von Miller (SLB) and Danny Trevathan.  Their LB’s can rush, play the run and cover, very balanced unit.


It’s not that we can’t beat Denver, I’d just prefer to play them last.  Unless of course good ol’ rubberneck is hurt, and then that changes everything.  🙂




From Tim


Q – Hey Mike, so only a few weeks ago I read a lot of comments about how we had poor coaching. Then we go on a 5-2/3-0 streak with all that’s gone on – on and off the field with the OL patched up many times with new personnel. So how have we done that? Is it coaching? Did the coaches improve or was the team not executing early on the way it is now? Little of both?




You have to give Philbin a lot of credit for keeping this team focused through the whole Martin/Incognito fiasco.  It wasn’t easy for him to stay focused, let alone keep the 53 guys on the roster on point.  He did that.  Whether or not he’s a great football mind or not, I’m not sure, but I do think he’s an excellent manager and deals with adversity and can persevere as good as anyone.


Why the O-line is playing so much better is a bit more mysterious.  McKinnie was an upgrade over Jon Martin, but Tyson Clabo was a HUGE upgrade over Tyson Clabo???  What happened there?  I guess maybe the demotion was a bucket of ice water down his shorts. A harsh wakeup call, but it worked.  Also, Sam Brenner, and for a short time, Nate Garner filled in very nicely for Richie Incognito.  Is either an upgrade?  Brenner might be, he’s been steady, and you can certainly figure he isn’t picking on anyone in the locker room, but I can’t confirm that.  🙂


I guess what I’m saying is, it’s probably more execution than anything, but no doubt they had to make some adjustments as well.  We still have 2 games left, and winning these 2 will go a long way to convince me that Philbin is the right guy for this team.  A horrible loss to either the Bills or the Jets, or both, may change that.




From Piggy


Q – Oink is the question


It’s not about the Dolphins 

It’s about the Steelers 

I’m counting 3 weeks in a row of cheap below the belt play:


1st Tomlin obstructs path of kick returner in Baltimore game 


2nd Some scrub spears Misi in the back and then has the nerve to 

Colonpokey Starks against our beloved Dolphins 


3rd and all helmet Chuck Cecil jaw breaking hit to a punter 


So I am wondering, are the Steelers the dirtiest team in the league?


Do you think they take their cues from Tomlin?


And how is it that stuff between Martin and Incognito off the field received more attention than these on the field cheap shots?


The Steelers have embarrassed the game the last 3 weeks.  But there is silence from the pundits on the topic 


Do the Steelers lack leadership when Tomlin breaks the rules followed by their players in the next 2 weeks?


What gives with these obvious double standard?




A Snorting mad pig!


Unfortunately Ser Piggy (Game of Thrones), the off the field stuff counts more than the on field stuff too often.  A player tweets something, and the news spreads like wildfire.  It’s silly, but that’s the world we live in.


I don’t think the Steelers are a dirty team.  Why that player gave Starks a colonoscopy, I can’t answer, but I think he almost ended up with the wrong ball(s).


Fuck the Stealers anyway, we BEAT THEM!  OK, so maybe we barely beat them, but we did beat them, and their out of the payoffs, so their days of being a story for on the field stuff this year is OVER!  We’re relevant, they’re toast, and that should make you happy, not snorting mad!


I’m glad you and Ken had a blast at Slatterys, I wish I could have been there.  I might consider it this week, I have to see.




Since I only got 4 questions, and I usually get 5-6, I’m going to use the empty space for a little editorial . . . .


We’re 8-6, and right in the thick of a playoff hunt.  2 more wins, and yes folks, our 2013 Miami Dolphins are in the playoffs, no matter what happens!  I have to admit, I’m nervous, really nervous even, about these last 2 games.  There’s nothing more dangerous than a team playing loose,  with nothing other than self satisfaction of knocking a divisional foe out of the playoffs.  You know what though?  There is something more dangerous.  The Miami Dolphins are more dangerous, because we have pulled together as a team, and we’re playing focused now, and we’re executing the little things, especially in the 4th QTR, that get you victories.


Could all this unravel with one loss?  Sure it could, but I’m going to enjoy this while it lasts.  I recommend we ALL enjoy it.  We’re relevant, we’re in the hunt for a legit playoff spot, and at the moment, WE control whether we get in, no one else.  That’s awesome, and everyone here should admit freely that there were times during this season when we had our doubts, BIG TIME!


So, let’s hope for a victory in cold, windy, maybe snowy Buffalo, and then back home against the NY Jets.  Dolphins fan presence was strong at MetLife, I hope it’s at a fever pitch in Sun Life, with the playoffs on the line, and possibly the division crown.  Ain’t that something? AFC East divisional champions?  WOW!






And now for the babe of the week . . . .


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