After another tough overtime loss to the Arizona Cardinals, the Miami Dolphins look to rebound against the young team of the Cincinnati Benagls. Led by Andy Dalton and his partner in crime A.J. Green, the Bengals boast a underrated duo.
I think the Dolphins can pull this one out. The past two weeks we played great but we let the chances slip away. Guys are starting to step up and helping this team out.
Here's some things you should be watching for during the game.
Every week I take a look at the rookies, so this shouldn't be a surprise to you guys by now. Some rookies are not listed due to the fact they will be in their position column.
Ryan Tannehill- I did not expect that performance against the Cardinals. I stated last week, we would be running the ball alot. Boy, was I wrong. Tannehill threw for 431 yards on 26 completions. He threw 41 passes. He had a touchdown and 2 interceptions.
So the touchdown came on blown coverage. Big deal. Tannehill saw it and took advantage of it. He's been surprisingly accurate, in my opinion. His recievers aren't helping him though. I'll discuss them later in the post.
Tannehill needs to start taking care of the football. He's young still, which is good.
Tannehill came within 1 yard of the rookie passing record of 432 yards, set by Cam Newton. Tannehill also broke Dan Marino's rookie record of 322 yards. Things are looking up for this kid. Expect another solid outing from him on Sunday.
Jonathan Martin- I don't have much to say on Martin. He's progressing like I want him to, fast. Martin, along with the whole offensive line, needs to give Tannehill a little more protection though.
Michael Egnew- was active for the first time last week. Didn't see much playing time though.
Sean Smith had the game of his life. He finally held onto the football and recorded 2, yes 2, interceptions. The 2nd interception impressed me the most. No it wasn't the fact he kept his feet in and held onto the ball. It was his awareness. Smith was covering some other reciever. He noticed Jimmy Wilson was covering Larry Fitzgerald. If you notice, Smith changes with Wilson and covers Fitzgerald. The secondary needs a leader and Smith is the one leading now the Davis is gone.
Smith will have to be on his game again. He'll be facing the young star in A.J. Green. If Smith can shadow Fitzgerald, I think he can shadow Green.
Who will be starting across from Smith, that is a good question. Richard Marshall is injured and so is Nolan Carroll. In practice, R.J. Stanford was lining up with the first team. Our secondary was already thin, now it's just a problem. Wilson has been moved back to corner for now.
Marshall got burned alot against the Cardinals. Need him healthy and to be on his game. The same goes for Carroll.
The safeties have been a surprise. Reshad Jones and Chris Clemons complement each other well. They're both playing solid football and they should be able to help against these fast recievers of the Bengals.
Cameron Wake recorded his first sack of the season. He also recorded his second. And also his third. Along with his fourth and he split a sack with Koa Misi. Wake needed a game to get going and look for him to be near the top of the league in sacks by the end of the season.
Jared Odrick also recorded a sack and celebrated with his Pee-Wee dance. Also playing some solid football.
The dynamic duo, Randy Starks and Paul Soliai, have been wrecking havoc on offenses running games. Also creating lanes for linebackers to get through and provide pressure.
Olivier Vernon, Derrick Shelby, and Kheeston Randall have been filling in on the line. With more playing time they could develop into solid backups or fringe starters.
The defensive line, in my opinion, is the best in the league. The stats don't show it but these guys are giving it their all. I don't see Green-Ellis rushing for 100 yards.
A Dolphins reciever leading the league in recieving yards? No way!? It can't be true! Indeed it is folks. Brian Hartline leads the league with 455 yards. For a guy that missed all of training camp, he hasn't shown it. It's apparent Tannehill and Hartline have chemistry. The west coast is perfect for Hartline. Hartline's contract expires at the end of the season. Pay da man!
Hartline should continue to have success with Tannehill on Sunday and through the season. Do I expect him to lead the league in recieving? No. Hartline will be a household name after this season.
Davone Bess has been Tannehill's safeguard. Making the tough catches and continuing drives. If we could get a good young reciever in the first round, the combination of Hartline, Bess, and the rookie would be killer!
Even with the Bengals secondary healthy, I still think these two, Bess and Hartline, can find success if Tannehill is on his game.
Behind Bess and Hartline, we have Jabar Gaffney, Marlon Moore, Anthony Armstrong, and Rishard Matthews. I've already expressed my man crush on Matthews in previous post, so I will not rant about how the staff should get him involved.
Gaffney was signed this week and looked comfortable in practice. Don't expect much, the team will bring him back gradually.
Armstrong needs to start taking the tops of defenses. Sherman has to have some plays where Armstrong can just run down field and create some open space for the other recievers.
Moore has been inactive the past couple of games. Good special teamer, adequate reciever.
Reggie Bush admitted he was hurting during the Arizona game. The star of our offense, Bush needs to stay healthy. He ran for 67 yards though on a heavy passing day.
A good running back is a rookie quarterbacks best friend. If Bush is running good, that sets up the play action for Tannehill. Bush will need to be patient and find his lanes. If Bush can't get going, Tannehill will be in for a rough outing.
Behind Bush is Daniel Thomas and, rookie, Lamar Miller. Thomas is the power/pass block runner while Miller is the better pure runner. Thomas can be a good running back, he just needs to hold onto the ball.
Miller is like bush. Explosive. He's a threat to take it every time. He needs some playing time but if we were to get rid of Bush in free agency, I feel comfortable moving ahead with Miller. I don't see us getting rid of Bush though.
Jorvorskie Lane, an unknown heading into the season, has turned heads around the league. The former Texas A&M star was brought in my Sherman persuading Ireland to give him a look. Lane had to lose weight, which he did.
Lane is not a complete fullback yet. He whiffs on some of his blocks, but he can run over guys in the run game. He's a great goal line back so far and should see more touches in the redzone. In the preseason he was targeted in the passing game often, though we haven't seen that yet.
Of course we are most interested in what you guys are looking forward to watching. Please feel free to comment below.