What can I say? What the hell can I say? It was the same old crap from this team, and this defense in particular. And who would have thought that with the score 42-7, the worst part of the game was still yet to come. Of course I'm talking about Ronnie Brown's injury. Let's all hope and pray it's nothing serious. More on him and his injury (and his play) later on.
Of course this is where we'll start. And all you needed to watch today to know that this was going to be a long afternoon was the first 5 minutes of the game. Right from get onset, the defense showed it's true colors. They got no pressure on Tom Brady. Then the Dolphins give up a 3rd down conversion on a 3rd and 5. And to top it off, Miami showes off it's inability to make a tackle on the 30 yard touchdown pass from Brady to Donte Stallworth. Great start, guys.
The play only got worse from there. This Patriots offense made the Dolphins defense look like a bad JV team. They missed tackles all game long. Wes Welker looked like an all-pro out there. And Randy Moss continued to prove that he's the most talented receiver to ever play the game. Boy did he own the secondary today...which brings me to my next point. Incase you were wondering how bad Cameron Worrell is in coverage, all you had to do was see today's game. Even when he was in position to defend a pass, he failed miserably. Moss's two touchdowns both showcased just how bad Worrell is in coverage. And if that wasn't bad enough, Renaldo Hill goes down with what could potentially be a serious injury. Enter Jason Allen. To Allen's credit, though, I didn't really notice him all that much. I suppose blending into a terrible defense is something Allen is good at.
While we're on the topic of individual players, a couple quick notes. There was a Joey Porter sighting. He picked up his first sack. Big f*cking deal, right? And Jason Taylor did pick off a Matt Cassel pass and return it for a touchdown when the score was 42-14. I know he set the record for most touchdowns in NFL history by a defensive lineman, and I'm happy for him and all, but the "Air Jordan" endzone antic was a bit much for my taste. I bet many of you forgot Taylor was even on this team for most of the game. He has no tackles and was basically a non-factor except for the one play.
And to complete the shitty day, Zach Thomas was in a car accident following the game. Don't worry. He and his wife were both just fine. They were just rear-ended. Hmmm..."rear-ended" kind of sums up the experiences of Dolphin fans this year, doesn't it?
Ronnie was looking so good today before his injury, which makes his injury that much more of an absolute killer. He was breaking off some nice runs and was continuing to show off that great vision that many Dolphin fans were questioning entering this season. And you justh ave to love Ronnie's effort. He plays with such fire and enthusiasm. If only it would rub off on the rest of the team. He failed to reach 100 yards rushing thanks to the injury, but did total over 100 yards from scrimmage. And what makes this injury suck even more is because of how much fun it is to watch this kid run. Ronnie was basically the only player to be excited to see play week in and week out on this dreadful team and now us fans have been potentially stripped of that luxury. Damn it's painful! As for the injury, Brown was able to walk off the field under his own power. Then he was seen leaving the stadium on crtuches and in an air-cast. X-rays were negative, which is good. But we'll know more about it tomorrow when he undergoes an MRI.
Here's what Ronnie had to say:
"I look up, and (the training staff) is already out on the field. I was, like, 'Uh oh.' I just hope that I can get back, not just for myself but for my team. When I went out, I kind of got that feeling I was letting my team down, going out of the game."
Letting his team down? You got to love this kid!!
Zach Thomas on the injury:
"These games would be even a lot uglier if we didn't have Ronnie."
Get well soon, Ronnie!
I think that, with each passing game, we are learning that Cleo Lemon is nothing more than a backup in this league. He didn't play terribly, but he wasn't good, either. His play was somewhere in between. He makes some good throws, like the deep out to Marty Booker. Then he makes some bad throws, like the many inaccurate passes to open receivers. And it's also becoming clear that Lemon has a good arm but absolutely no touch on the deep ball. Ted Ginn was wide open on a bomb that Ginn might have been able to score on. If not, it would have still been a huge gain. But Cleo overthrew him, which isn't easy to do. And yet again, you could see signs of frustration from these Dolphin receivers at different points in the game.
The one major gripe, though, I have with Cleo is that he makes too many dumb plays. He doesn't protect the ball in the pocket, leading to the fumble. He forces passes into coverage that he shouldn't be. And how terrible of a decision was the pass he tried to get into Marty Booker that resulted in the interception? I hate to blame people for injuries, so all I'll say is if Lemon doesn't make that throw, then Brown is never injured trying to make a tackle. Am I blaming him? You make the call.
Odds & Ends
-The offensive line continues to be a pleasant surprise this year. They are opening up running holes much more often than last year and are doing a pretty good job protecting the quarterback. It's amazing what keeping the unit together all season will do in terms of improving the unit.
-It's hard to tell on television if the receivers are getting open. So I won't criticize any of the receivers because I just don't know if they are open more often than the stats show. But I will say this about the two young ones. Ted Ginn only had 3 catches, but he showed some good hands on those catches. And let's not forget that he was wide open on that deep ball that Lemon just overthrew. I like what I'm seeing from Ginn right now. As for Derek Hagan, he was non-existant until the 4th quarter, but he, too, showed some good hands and made some tough catches. Perhaps when we get a real QB (cough Beck cough) in there with these 2 guys, we'll really see them blossom.
-Stat of the game: the Patriots offense only had to convert on 3 3rd downs all game to produce 42 points. Yeah, I'm disgusted.
So that's all. Feel free to point out any things I may have missed.