The Miami Dolphins are set to take on the Detroit Lions at Hard Rock Stadium and will look to begin the season with a 5-2 record, something they haven’t done since 2003. More importantly, a win today would set them up for a nice run as the NFL season heads towards Thanksgiving weekend.
That’s important because there is a notion out there that the real NFL season doesn’t start until Thanksgiving. Mainly, that is because you start to see teams recover from their early season injuries and start to kick it in high gear.
For the Dolphins, they’ll have three more games before Thanksgiving after this Lions game – Houston Texans, New York Jets, and the Green Bay Packers. A win today would guarantee the Dolphins, at the very worst, a .500 record and right in the thick of things heading into Thanksgiving weekend.
Of course, the Dolphins will want more. Realistically speaking, the games against the Texans and Jets are winnable, especially with the Jets at home. The tilt against the Packers will be a tough one as the Dolphins will head to Lambeau Field to face Aaron Rodgers and his crew – certainly, no easy task. However, one game at a time.
For the Dolphins and head coach Adam Gase, they are doing just that. As they approach the halfway mark of the season, they are looking to move past the big mistakes and clean up little issues each week. What exactly does this mean? Gase explained in his press conference earlier this week.
“You want them to be more like the little, tiny mistakes. You don’t want it to be things like formations, alignments, those type of things. And I think we’ve moved away from that for the most part in all three phases,” said Gase. “But at the same time, all it takes is one to creep in and throw a whole thing off. That’s why you’re constantly trying, as a coach, you’re reminding your players over and over again about probably the most basic things just to make sure, all right, we still have it. You don’t want to ever think you got it because that’s when you find yourself in trouble.”
Gase went on to mention that within the next few weeks, it will be time to bring it to another level. This confirms the notion that the real NFL season doesn’t begin until Thanksgiving.
“It’s probably in the next like few weeks, where you’re hoping everybody is kind of really kicking it in all cylinders, everybody understands just kind of the process that you’re going through for that season. It changes when your guys changed. You start losing some guys and all of a sudden you can take a few steps back as far as what your process is getting ready for a game.”
As the Dolphins get set to take the field today against the Lions, they’ll look for a win to bring their record to 5-2. But more importantly, they will look to start gearing up for a playoff run as they begin their stretch into Thanksgiving weekend.
Matthew Cannata is the host of Phinsider Radio, the number one MIami Dolphins podcast on the internet. Follow him on Twitter: @CannataNFL.