The title of this post says it all. By far, the biggest issue facing this Dolphins' offense is their inability to produce on 1st down.
Generally, conservative offenses will run the ball a majority of the time on 1st down. On the other hand, it's widely accepted that the "best" down to pass the ball on is actually 1st down.
The Dolphins, through 2 games, have run 49 plays on 1st & 10. Thirty-one of them have been pass plays while just eighteen have been running plays. The problem is that the Dolphins have averaged just 2.89 yards on the ground and 3.52 yards through the air on first down and ten.
That's right: 49 plays on 1st & 10 for just 161 yards - an average of 3.28 yards per play. This puts the Dolphins in consistent 2nd & 6 to 10 situations. The Dolphins have converted only 33% (7/21) of these situations, which results in a ton of 3rd down situations, in which the Dolphins are just 6 for 25 and average less than 4 yards per play.
So as you watch the Dolphins on Sunday against New England, pay special attention to how successful they are on 1st down. That will go a long way towards determining of effective or ineffective Miami's offense will be.