What Went Wrong With The Dolphins Defense?

So much of the focus of the Dolphins' struggles early against the Falcons on Friday night will be aimed at quarterback Chad Henne.  The Dolphins' across the board could not find a rhythm against the Falcon's first team players, and quickly found themselves behind 17-0.  If not for the success the team found against the second and third string Atlanta players, the Dolphins would have been badly embarrassed at the end of the night.  Instead, the Dolphins escaped the Georgia Dome with a 28-23 victory.

But, shouldn't the Dolphins be able to find some success against the Falcons' top players?  Especially Miami's vaunted defense - the team's strength?

So, what went wrong?

The defense allowed Falcons' quarterback Matt Ryan to pick them apart.  Ryan left the game with 6 completions on 10 passes, gaining 90 yards, and one touchdown.  

But, the Dolphins strength on defense is stuffing the run, correct?  Not last night.  In the first quarter, the Falcons's running backs Michael Turner and Jason Snelling found 44 yards on just 9 carries. Included in Turner's night was a rushing touchdown, running through Dolphins' franchise player, nose tackle Paul Soliai.

It wasn't all bad for the Dolphins defense.  Cornerback Benny Sapp dove for an interception in the second quarter, and rookie corner Jimmy Wilson sacked Atlanta quarterback John Parker Wilson, forcing a fumble, leading to a Dolphins touchdown. A.J. Edds and Jason Trusnik each added a sack of their own, while rookie cornerback sealed the win for Miami with a late interception.

So, what was the problem?  Is the defense in trouble?  Will they reach the lofty expectations of them?  Or, is this just one preseason game, and we all need to calm down?

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior users will need to choose a permanent username, along with a new password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

I already have a Vox Media account!

Verify Vox Media account

Please login to your Vox Media account. This account will be linked to your previously existing Eater account.

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior MT authors will need to choose a new username and password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join The Phinsider

You must be a member of The Phinsider to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at The Phinsider. You should read them.

Join The Phinsider

You must be a member of The Phinsider to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at The Phinsider. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.

tracking_pixel_9341_tracker