Q – Okay so we got to 2-2 at the bye with a dominant performance against the lowly Raiders.
Do you think that was a sign of things to come from the offense or was it that the Raiders were that bad on defense?
The Raiders are a mess, but in some ways, so were we. The best way to get out of a mess is to play a real strong game, playing well on offense, defense, and special teams. We did what we had to do, and we were better than the Raiders. The game could have a gone a lot of ways. It could have been a slop fest on both sides, and maybe an ugly close game victory for us, or maybe it was the Raiders who put it all together, and handled us similar to the way we handled them, or it could have turned out just like it did, with us taking care of business.
The entire team rose to the occasion. Ryan Tannehill came out swinging amidst the mild controversy of not being named the starter by Head Coach Joe Philbin. The defense pressured rookie Derek Carr, sacked him twice, and intercepted him 3 times. The Dolphins offense rushed for a total of 157 yards, led by Lamar Miller with 64, DT7.0 with 35 yards on 5 carries and QB Ryan Tannehill with the same as DT7.0, 5 carries 35 yards. There were no special teams gaffes to drive us crazy this week, it really was a strong effort by our team.
I can say with total honesty that I wouldn’t have been shocked if we lost that game, or just played poorly and pulled out the win. Tannehill deserves props for playing well in this game, he needed to do that to quash the noise. We have the BYE week now, and really, it comes at a very good time for us. A few key injured players should be back for the Fest game against the Packers. Mike Pouncey, Koa Misi, Randy Starks, Knowshon Moreno and LB Chris McCain. We also get S Reshad Jones back from suspension, so the needle is definitely pointing up coming out of the BYE week against the Packers.
Q – Mike
After finally KICKING the piss out of a team that we should beat!
And getting 4 starters back off of injury.
What is it your looking for out of the next quarter of games?
Hard to predict what we’re going to do the next 4 games, because that depends on which Dolphins team shows up for those games. The schedule is rough with the Packers at Sun Life, Bears in CHI, then we travel to the Jaguars in JAX, and then at home again for the best SD Chargers team in quite some time.
I think the good thing is we needed to play well, regardless of opponent, and we did that. We have a little confidence going into the BYE week, but not overconfident, as Philip Wheeler importantly pointed out. No need to get crazy after beating up in the Raiders, but still, we did what we had to do, and that’s a good thing.
When we play the Packers next week, we should have a few key injured players back, as I mentioned above to Tim, (Pouncey, Starks, Misi and McCain) and Reshad Jones back from suspension. I think that makes our team better. Beating the Pack at home will be another confidence builder. One game at a time, but that would be a big win for our team. Aaron Rodgers is playing very well now, and their defense did enough to beat a stacked Chicago Bears offense. They didn’t exactly shut them down, but they bent and didn’t break enough to win. They picked off Jay Cutler twice, but I think their run defense is what we need to exploit. I hope we give our stable of backs a good workout. We need to run like we have, and I hope Moreno is back for this game. If not, Miller, DT7.0 and Damien Williams need to pound the rock on that soft D-line. Of course Tannehill will need to play well to keep up with Aaron Rodgers, but I want a heavy focus on the run game.
The Bears are similar to the Packers, loaded with WR’s and gunslinging QB, but the Bears can run the ball better than the Packers. Another tough challenge, but when we play the Bears, we will also be getting Dion Jordan back from his suspension, and hopefully, he brings a spark and a ready to make an impact attitude. The Jaguars will likely still have rookie QB Blake Bortles starting, which should give David some wood for that game. I think we can handle the Jags and I expect us to be playing better football at full strength at that point of the season. The Chargers will be one of our toughest tests, if not THE toughest test. The Chargers may be 7-1 at that point, although they face the Broncos in Denver, but if they keep playing like they’re playing, they might beat Denver.
Q – A quarter of the Oinking season is over!
Give me some grades
Who has been the offense’s best performer?
Who has been the offense’s worst performer?
Who has been the defense’s best performer?
Who has been the defenses’s worst performer?
OK Piggy, here they are . . . .
The Nominees for Best Offensive Performer are . . .
Mike Wallace – 20 REC, 246 YDS, 3 TD’s
Lamar Miller – 49 CAR 277 YDS 5.7 YPC 2 TD’s
Ryan Tannehill – 93 CMP 155 ATT, 902 YDS 6 TD’s
And the winner is – Lamar Miller!
The Nominees for worst Offensive performer are . . .
Brandon Gibson – 7 REC, 65 YDS 0 TD’s
Ryan Tannehill – 93 CMP 155 ATT, 902 TDS, 6 TD’s 3 INT’s 81.2 QBR
Brian Hartline – 16 REC, 161 YDS, 1 TD
And the winner is – Brandon Gibson!
The Nominees for Defensive Best Performer are . . .
Jelani Jenkins – 38 TKL, 1.5 SACKS, 1 FF
Brent Grimes – 19 TKL, 5 PD’s, 1 INT, 1FF
Olivier Vernon – 12 TKL, 2 SACKS, 2 TFL
And the winner is – Jelani Jenkins!
The nominees for Defensive Worst Performer are . . .
Philip Wheeler – 14 TKL, 1 TFL
Jamar Taylor – 7 TKL
Louis Delmas – 15 TKL, 1FR
And the winner is – Jamar Taylor!
Kind of hard to pick the worst, on both sides of the ball, but, I had to answer the question, and I expect to hear some complaints about most of these, so have at it!
from Twice The The
Q – Hey Mike E,
What do you know about next week’s opponent “Bye Week”? Are they any good? Also, where is “Bye” – I couldn’t find it on the map. And what kind of team name is “Week” anyway??? Is their mascot a calendar, or a roman sun dial?
Problem is, Bye is misspelled. By is a nomadic team that plays all over the US. Their games don’t count, even though they play each team once per year, and then play the 4 teams with the best records in the playoffs. They can be found playing each in every team at some point during the year, and sometimes they play as many 6 teams in a week. The reason they are called BYE, which is actually slang for “BY”, because eventually, they will be playing a team “BY” you.
Bye is a really bad team. Most teams consider it a rest week, so that tells you how little respect they get. Week is also misspelled. It’s really WEAK, because they are a poor team. They are so bad, you can’t even find stats for them, and I’m not positive, but I think Goodell is the owner.
This is the official mascot for the BYE week.
Hope this helps!
Q – We’re headed into the bye week at 2-2 and our games have been bi-polar. Judging by what we’ve seen this first quarter of the season, do you think this team can get consistent and eventually make the playoffs? Also, do you have faith in the coaching staff to make the right decisions in close games to close out victories?
Hard to say YES to that. I’d love for that to happen, as would everyone on this blog, but I’m not sure the answer is yes.
We haven’t been consistent all year. The Patriots game was as a very uneven performance. Bad the 1st half, pretty good the 2nd half. The Bills game was mostly bad. The Chiefs game was mostly bad. The Raiders game was mostly good. There you have it, we’ve had a lot of ups and downs, and 1 game managed to have both.
Getting healthy may help us towards being more consistent, but injuries are a part of the NFL, and although we’re getting a few guys healthy, and will be getting 2 back from suspensions, there may be other injuries to deal with.
What I think is a very important part of playing better is that our O-line is getting better. I expect Pouncey to make a line that has played well this year to play even better. The O-line has been doing a fantastic job opening holes, something we haven’t seen here in quite some time. I also think the pass blocking is much better as well. If our run game continues to work, that makes things easier for Ryan Tannehill. If Tannehill plays better along with the run game working as it has, we can be consistently better on offense. If we’re consistently better on offense, that takes the pressure off the defense.
We signed LaMichael James to the PS. We’re improving the talent we have in stable of RB’s. I like that Hickey isn’t standing pat. With Miller’s great play this year, we already have a nice 1-2 punch when Knowshon Moreno comes back. We also have Damien Williams and Orleans Darkwa. Hickey wants to upgrade when he can, and James may not only help make our depth better at RB, but he may be the solid returner we’re looking for. Landry still scares the heck out of me, and Thigpen has been scary back there as well, although he did have one good season as a returner.
As far as having faith in the coaching staff, I’m from Missouri on this one. Show me! I guess the answer at this point is no. I’d love for Joe, Bill, and Kevin to prove me wrong as a group, but besides the good 2nd half against the Pats, and a blowout against the lowly Raiders, I haven’t seen enough to have confidence in Joe. Admittedly, the last 2 games of last season leaves me with a scar that hasn’t quite healed yet. I’m not revisiting that bad time, but that left me wanting him ousted. I don’t feel that way now, but he has to prove, not to me, but to his team and the NFL that he belongs as the Head Coach of an NFL team, and not just a guy behind the scenes, like an OC. I think if we get healthy, and stay healthy, there won’t be any excuses for us not to be a better team this year, and make the playoffs. I think we have enough talent on both sides of the ball to be a playoff team. Beating the Green Bay Packers will be an excellent start to building confidence in the team, and the fan base. GO DO IT!
from Brian in NY
Q – Mike,
Daniel Thomas has played well for us in the last two games with 50 yards rushing for a 7.1 average and catching a few balls out of the backfield for 46 yards as well. Do you think he keeps his roster spot when Knowshon returns?
Brian in NY
I think it’s very possible he does. I think it speaks volumes that he got opportunities, as many, or more than Williams and Darkwa. I think he showed he was hungry, and he made the most of his opportunities. DT7.0 looked good behind our new O-line. I think it also depends on how LaMichael James progresses, if he progresses, and if they feel they need to make a change as to who returns kicks and punts. Then it’s a numbers game, and someone will have to go. At this point, I’d say Orelans Darkwa is the most likely to go, and if they bring James up to return kicks, then it makes it more likely that either Williams or Darkwa will have to go, and since Williams is ahead of Darkwa on the depth chart, that means Darkwa. Darkwa could go to the practice squad, which is probably where he belongs at this point anyway.
So yeah Bri, I think DT is going to stick around. he helped himself a lot by showing well in the Raiders game. He’s got to keep it up though, and not be the old DT3, and stick to being DT7.0
Thanks for participating and sending in your questions. You guys and girls practically write the article, so thanks for your help!
And now for the babe of the week . . . .