Q – Wyoming85
You seem to be in a downward spiral about the team as a whole!
Do you think the fan base in general is hypersensitive?
Or is it just a case of over hyped expectations?
I think more than anything it’s frustration of losing so poorly to the division rival Bills. Last year, the Bills were 6-10, but thoroughly, and brutally beat us 19-0 when the playoffs were on the line for us, and beat us with a last second FG 23-21, the first time we played them last year. I can’t speak for everyone, but I expected a better fight from our team.
The Bills have become our nemesis, and I thought with an improved O-line, an improved Tannehill(?), and a vinegar and piss attitude that we need to beat this team would lead us to victory. It looked more like pissed in our pants, and possible douched with vinegar before the game.
I know the Bills are a tough matchup, because of our O-line, and their great defensive front 4, but I expected our new O-line to do better. Unfortunately, Moreno, who was an important player, and a big reason (IMO) why we beat the Patriots got injured early, and that didn’t help things. Tannehill was uneven most of the day, and is still consistently throwing off target. The deep ball is non existent because Tannehill can’t seem to connect with anybody long with an accurate pass. That needs to get fixed, or we need to look for a new QB. It’s easier to replace the QB than it is to replace the entire receiving corps. I’m not sure we’ll have to do that, but Tannehill has just got to improve his deep ball accuracy.
The defense was missing a few guys, but oddly enough, it was the ST’s, usually a great unit for us, that let us down Sunday as well. Jason Trusnik started at LB Sunday, and was replaced on ST’s by newly added LB Kelvin Sheppard. Sheppard was kind to his former team (Bills), and got easily wiped out of the CJ Spiller TD return. He was right there, but blocked out of the play. We also gave up a blocked punt, rookie Damien Williams missed a key block to allow that as well.
We’ll see how/if the team rebounds at home against KC. I’ll tell you this much, a loss to the Chiefs at home, and it’s going to get nasty on this board for sure. I think some are already fed up, but a loss to KC at home will cause quite a stir here, and deservedly so. Especially if that loss includes another poor performance from Ryan Tannehill. I think most of us expected an improved team, and at 1-2, the improvement will be hard to find. I wouldn’t say “Hyped expectations” but we have a very good front 4 in our own right, and good starters at CB, and some good depth at CB. I liked Delmas the first game, but apparently the coaches didn’t, because he didn’t start against BUF. Still don’t get that, and the same for Chris McCain. The guy just seems to make things happen, yet he was absent from this game. Baffling!
Okay, the BUF game sucked but it’s still one loss. It doesn’t mean that’s how the team will play every week at least we hope not.
With all the injuries mounting up and the team having to rely on patchwork players and a lot of youth to get them through it, what is the key in your opinion to getting a win against the Chiefs at home this Sunday?
I think one of the most important things we can do is have the ability to run the ball effectively. KC runs the 3-4 defense, and has one of the better NT’s in the game in young Dontari Poe. They bring the heat with OLB Tamba Hali who has 74.5 sacks in 8 years with KC, and also bookend LB Justin Houston, who has 28.5 sacks the last 3 seasons. They don’t get pressure from the ends, Vance Walker and Allen bailey, but it’s hard to block the uneven front and takes more discipline to see which side or both is bring the heat. We also have to help out Satele at C with big Dontari Poe. He’s precisely the type of player that can give Satele trouble, a big 6’3” 346 NT who can really move, and push Satele back. We’ll have to help him out, which of course leaves another gap open. That’s why I expect a heavy dose of running the football. Tannehill will NOT be throwing the ball 49 times this week, mark my word!
I expect us to shore up the ST’s, so I don’t think that’s going to kill us Sunday. Jamaal Charles is banged up, and Knile Davis was successful last week, but he’s not the homerun threat that Charles is. Alex Smith is an accurate passer who can run out of the pocket, so our LB’s are going to have to be disciplined there. he’s as fast as Tannehill, and if you saw the playoff game a few years ago against the Saints, Smith can run effectively if he has to.
If we run effectively, hopefully we can play action pass, and then Ryan needs to hit a couple of those. Last week, we had drops, but also too many inaccurate throws by Ryan Tannehill. We’re leaving points on the field, and we’re not good enough in other aspects of the team to do that. Knowshon is out, so that leaves Lamar Miller, Damien Williams and Orleans Darkwa. That’s a very inexperienced backfield, so I hope they worked real hard on pass protection with all of these guys.
On defense, if we shut down the run game, I think it will be easier to contain Dwayne Bowe and Donnie Avery. Bowe is a big, physical receiver that I think Finnegan will be covering, which leaves Avery to Grimes. I’m not sure that Finnegan could keep up with the speedy and slippery Avery, so that’s why I have it that way. I could be wrong. Maybe Will Davis will cover Avery, or a combo of all 3.
This is not a must win, not at game 3, but it will be a bad loss to lose at home now, especially after the putrid game against BUF. I would expect a more aggressive gameplan on offense compared to last week. No uptempo last week, but I think it worked, and we’ll revisit that. We’ll see a mix of all 3 RB’s, and I expect a much better game from RT. Look for a much better game from Hartline, who was nearly invisible last week. If Berry contains Wallace, Hartline will be getting a lot of action, and I expect Clay to bust out as well.
Q – If we win the next two against the diving Chiefs and the pathetic Raiders, we’ll be 3-1 going into the break. Sounds great, but will we really know all that much more about the team?
Well said Stanger. The answer, as I could see you’re alluding to, would be NO. We’ll have to succeed in some ways to beat both of those teams, but I don’t think we’d have a handle on what exactly we have here with our team. I would imagine we will still be shuffling players around in the LB corps as people get healthy, and possibly others are reinstated (Jordan). It’s almost feasible to think we might not see the same LB crew twice this year with all of the injuries.
Also, in the secondary, Reshad Jones will be set to return, and it’s going to take a while for Delmas and Jones to get in sync with each other. At RB, Moreno is out, so it will likely be even more not than before, a RB by committee approach. Miller, D. Williams and Darkwa. Maybe one of these guys steps up and shows something, but likely we’ll see a bit of all of them. We’ve seen Tannehill throwing an awful lot to Wallace, but I have a feeling that changes. Like I said earlier, I think it;’s Hartline’s turn, so I think this week we feature Hartline and Clay more than Wallace.
Regardless of whether we really have a feel for what we have here, I’d love to go into the BYE week. I think all of us would be much more content being 3-1, despite how we got there. They say the NFL season is broken up into quarters, so you try and win each quarter. Being 3-1 after the 1st 4 is the right way to start, especially with Fest week and the Packers coming to town. There are a lot of new faces coming to this fest, some from Canada, some from the west coast, and others from the NE. I hope the Dolphins are primed to contend with the visiting Packers, and certainly, you’d rather play the cold weather Pack in the Miami heat.
Anyway, a victory against the Chiefs this week will take a little of the sting from last weeks paltry effort, and then another victory will have us all giddy, regardless of whether we really think our team is any good or not. It’s just nice to win. No matter who you play, a win is a win in the NFL, where on “Any Given Sunday” . . . .
And now for the babe of the week . . .
This one’s for you UK!!