This week's Game Balls are brought to you courtesy of Sprint.
Before I delve into the difficult selection of Game Ball "winners" for this week, I would like to thank Matty for covering for me the last few weeks. I was having some medical issues, and without hesitation, Matty took over the Game Balls, and, honestly, did a better job than I do.
But, I'm back now, and you all are stuck reading what I write ;)
Another week, another chance for the Dolphins to fall back to that magical .500 mark. Amazing how they keep doing that. At least this loss was to a powerhouse team - a team who has previously beaten the New Orleans Saints and the New England Patriots. A team that is dominating....okay, I give up. It was a loss to the Browns. How?
Anyway, on to the Game Balls.
1-Yard Game Ball. Anthony Fasano. Hey, at least he found the endzone.
2-Yard Game Ball. Davone Bess. Bess finished the game with 6 catches on 9 targets, with a total of 67 yards. And he did it without Brandon Marshall or Brian Hartline. Basically, Bess was the offense on Sunday.
3-Yard Game Ball. Cameron Wake. Maybe it's that he is too good, but isn't it starting to seem routine that Wake gets at least a sack to a sack-and-a-half each week. This week, it was 1-1/2, with 4 more tackles, and 3 more QB hits. Wake could be a dominant force in the NFL, if there was anyone else on this team who could threaten an o-line.
5-yard Game Ball 1. I couldn't decide to whom I should give the 4-yard game ball vs. the 5-yarder. So, I decided to give two 5-yarders. The first one goes to Dan Carpenter. Sure, he had his first field goal of the day blocked - the second time that's happened this year - but, he overcame that. DC$ blasted the 5th longest field goal in NFL history, and a new Dolphins'franchise record, with his 60-yard kick in the first half. The kick was one-yard longer than Pete Stoyanovich's previous team record, and just three-yards shy of the NFL record. The best part? Carpenter said after the game, "I actually thought I missed it. I thought I left it short." It's a good thing DC$ is on this team, since he has accounted for 99 of the Dolphins 215 points this year, or 46% of the Dolphins scoring.
5-Yard Game Ball 2. Paul Soliai. How about that plan to put Randy Starks at nose tackle this year? Guess that's no longer needed. Soliai has become a true force in the middle of the Dolphins' d-line. He had 4 tackles during the game, but, more importantly, he filled the middle of the line of scrimmage, resulting in the Browns' break-out star running back Peyton Hillisonly getting 57 yards on 18-carries, with a long of 13-yards. Another great game by Soliai.
Sack. I think this one is pretty clear this week. After the first series, I was thinking Chad Henne could be looking at some positive yards. But, then the rest of the game happened. Henne finished 16 for 32, for 174 yards, with 1 touchdown and 3 interceptions. His QB rating was a despicable 37.8. The three picks were inexcusable. The first one was just horrible. Brian Hartline was open, probably looking at scoring an easy touchdown, when Henne underthrew the pass so badly, an out of position rookie corner in Joe Haden easily stole the ball. The second interception wasn't much better, as Henne tried to force the ball to a well covered Davone Bess, only to overthrown him and let Abram Elam take that one. And finally, you can call it bad luck, but the third pick was batted at the line of scrimmage and picked off on the ricochet - a throw that was made so low, it was hard to imagine it not being deflected.
The good news is, it's Jets week. That's right. It's time to let the hatred for New York return and get you fired up for another week of football. The bad news? It's Jets week, and Miami isn't playing anywhere near the caiber of the Jets.