Right now, many of us are very excited for the future of this franchise. But today I wanted to simply take some time to talk about my favorite (and many of yours, as well) Miami Dolphin: Ronnie Brown.
I don't think enough can be said about the kind of season Ronnie was on his way towards having before that terrible week 7 injury that ended his season (yea, thanks again Cleo Lemon). He led the league in total yards from scrimmage and was well on his way towards a 1,300+ yard rushing season and a 2,000+ yard total yards from scrimmage season. He also had his first trip to Hawaii in sight as well. So it was insanely frustrating watching Ronnie suffer that injury, especially doing something that he shouldn't ever have to do (making a tackle).
So, today, let's sit back and just take some time to talk about Ronnie and just how great of a season he was having last year.
Sure, we can talk about his 4 consecutive 100 yard rushing games or his back-to-back 200 total yard games. But I wanted to go a different route and look and some of his key splits from the '07 season.
For example, one of the most important things you look at when examining a running back is how he does as the game wears on. And Ronnie Brown, to his credit, really doesn't miss a beat as his carries increase:
Carries 1-5: 35-172 (3.8 ypc)
Carries 6-10: 35-249 (7.1)
Carries 11-15: 27-93 (3.4)
Carries 16-20: 16-107 (6.7)
Solid numbers across the board, which is what you want to see out of a feature back.
Another important stat for a running back is how they do in 3rd (and 4th) and short. Again, to his credit, Brown is a great short-yardage back:
3rd and 2 or less: 4-19 (4 1st downs)
4th and 2 or less: 4-36 (4 1st downs)
That's 8 carries and 8 first downs. Quite impressive.
And one final stat I want to throw your way before giving way to some videos, I always like to look at what running backs do when their team is backed up in their own territory. Ronnie, again to his credit, is a great asset to the Dolphins when they are inside their own 20, as proven last year:
Inside own 20: 12-136 (11.3 ypc, 4 1st downs)
And yes, that includes Ronnie's 60 yard run against the Raiders in week 4 last year. Now if you take away that burst, Brown still averaged 6.9 ypc in his 11 other carries inside their own 20. Now that's getting the job done, folks.
But now we enter 2008 with Ronnie recovering from a torn ACL. Though we've been hearing that he's been making great progress, I'm still a bit leery. There's no need to rush him back onto the field. I hope the Dolphins are very cautious in Ronnie's return. But when he does return, the league better watch out. Because now he's running behind a much improved offensive line.
So join me today in raising a glass to Ronnie Brown. May his recovery go smoothly and may he run right through NFL defenses for the next 5 to 10 years in Miami as he did in 2007!
A few videos are below the fold...
2007 Week 3 vs Jets:
And 2007 Week 4 vs Raiders: