The Miami Dolphins beat the Dallas Cowboys 25-20 on Saturday. The first team offense for Miami moved the ball up and down the field throughout the first half of the game, but struggled to score. They would get into Dallas territory, only to have to punt or turn over the ball. It was not the confidence building performance desired against a team expected to have a bad defense this season.
"We moved the ball, but we didn't score points and that's what we're out there to do," Dolphins starting quarterback Ryan Tannehill explained after the game. "You know, I had a fumble on the long drive and threw the interception down in the redzone, you can't have that. You know you can't be careless with the ball and turn it over."
That interception was a terrible decision by Tannehill. Deep in Cowboys territory, the third-year quarterback tried to slide a ball through double coverage at the goalline. He threw the ball straight to cornerback Tyler Patmon. Tannehill explained the pick, saying, "Yeah I saw it, I thought the corner was going to fall off. Stupid decision, stupid throw, (RB Daniel) Thomas was wide open down the middle, should have done the check down."
That was not the only bad throw from Tannehill on the night. He had a wide open Mike Wallace down the side of the field, but could not make the connection, a problem stemming back to last year. "Miscommunication," Tannehill remarked when asked about that play. "He did the right thing, did exactly what we talked about in practice. Hit the guy on the crease, had him inside, he did exactly what we said, widen back to his landmark. I did the wrong thing and threw him back because I saw inside release, I trust that he's going to get back to his landmark just like we practiced and put it out there for him, just completely bad landmark on my park."
It was not all bad on Saturday, however, and Tannehill remarked on some of the success the team had as well. "We had our chances, I thought we ran the ball effectively. It was fun to see, good to see Knowshon (Moreno) out there running hard. I thought Lamar ran hard as well, and (RB) Damien (Williams) in there as well with the next group. So pleased with the running game, I don't know what we finished with but ran the ball well and got that going. So, I was happy to see that but we have to finish the drive, have to keep that going and put a touchdown on the board."
The Dolphins are exactly two weeks away from starting the regular season. Will they be ready when the games actually start to count? "I definitely felt like we're making progress," Tannehill stated. "You know, we said we wanted to run the ball better this week, and we did. We moved the ball effectively but at the end of the day, we have to score points. So, I feel good about the progress we're making and I don't know what our situation is next week but we definitely need to use these next two week regardless of what happens for our first real game."
Miami has one more preseason game, a Thursday contest against the St. Louis Rams, before they open the regular season at home against the New England Patriots on the 7th of September.