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Dolphins First Preseason Game Complete

A fan’s view on the first game of 2018

NFL: Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Miami Dolphins Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

Did anyone else get goosebumps watching the introduction to the preseason game on Thursday? I was heading home from work, streaming the game on my phone, and may have been slightly screaming at times from excitement. Half of the year, like many of you, is spent glued to a TV every weekend watching football games. I live for the feeling of waking up on Sunday mornings (anxious and sometimes nervous but always hopeful) ready to either tailgate all morning with my second family (fellow Dolphins fans) in preparation to watch my Dolphins or prepping to watch them at my local Atlanta DolFan Club. Thursday night at 7pm I got my laptop set up, my drink ready, Duke (my pup) dressed and all set, and then took a deep breath and said, let’s do this.

Now that it’s been a few days since I will share my thoughts on first preseason game. First of all, boy did it feel good to see number 17 out on the field. I would have been content if he just threw one complete pass, waved at the fans, and left the field. Lucky for us though, he stayed in for a few extra minutes and I’m glad he did. Tannehill came out and had a first successful drive including several completed passes. Yes, his last two passes were a bit off, but it’s fine. He hasn’t played in a game since December 11, 2016. I was impressed. Coach Gase was impressed and I believe Tannehill, himself, was content with his brief performance. Let’s not forget that pre-injury Tannehill was one of the most sacked quarterbacks in the league and he was untouched by the Buccaneers’ defense on Thursday night. The offensive line kept him protected. He didn’t get injured. He connected well with Stills on a couple passes. I call this a successful first preseason game for Tannehill. Repeat after me: It was the first preseason game. I feel like some folks need to be reminded after some of the reactions I saw on twitter/social medial following that game. Tannehill is gaining and showing more confidence and leadership as we inch closer to the season opener in September. I saw this brief video clip on Twitter over the weekend and wanted to add this for those who may not have seen it. It’s a clip from an interview on SiriusXM NFL Radio. They are discussing Gase’s thoughts on Tannehill and here Gase says this about him, “He has a great feel for the offense. He’s trying to do the little little tiny things that most people don’t notice better than what he did when we first started.” I think we indeed are seeing a Tannehill 2.0.

Last week I mentioned these games are really for all the rookies/newcomers to prove they want to earn a roster spot. Well, there were a few players who wanted to make sure they would make an impact. The 45 yard pass from Fales to Francis Owusu in the 3rd quarter was by far my favorite play from the game. Here, let’s watch it again because it was that good.

Fales, thanks to help from the offensive line, had time to make that beautiful pass to a WR who had double coverage. Who saw that coming? I sure wasn’t expecting it. It’s plays like those that will have fans saying, “I don’t think Landry will be missed.” Looking forward to, hopefully, seeing more of him in the next game on Friday against Carolina. I’d also like to see a little more of rookie TE Gesicki. The guy is going to be a beast. He’s already been making an impact each week in training camp and on Thursday night he came so close to a one-handed touchdown. If that pass wasn’t overthrown, and he remained in-bounds, it would have been the play of the week. Fellow Phinsider contributer and Sutton summed it up best, “One of the prettiest preseason incompletions I’ve ever seen.” I completely agree.

The other player who definitely shined last week was RB Senorise Perry. That guy took everyone by surprise on Thursday night. He’s putting in the work to prove he wants to be here this season and his performance last week, if it continues, should put him ahead. Honestly, as a fan watching the game at home last week, he made the game that much more enjoyable (which can be hard to do during preseason). It’s been a while since I have wanted to watch an entire preseason game start to finish. Thank you Perry! We Dolphins fans had rough go last season and have missed enjoyable games. Here are a few clips from his plays on Thursday tweeted out by Tom Like.

I do know what I don’t want to see more of on Friday. Penalties. These pre-snap penalties need to stop. Ju’Wuan James I like you. I always have since they drafted you, but you got some calls on Thursday night. I open up Twitter today, on my flight home from Florida, and first thing I see is he had one today at camp. Joe Schad tweeted this morning that James was chewed out by a coach and made to run around the practice field.

Maybe that old school coaching mentality will help?! Something has got to change, because penalties can cost us games.

Who were some players you enjoyed watching? What do you expect to see this upcoming week against the Panthers in Carolina? I expect to see more of QB David Fales. I tweeted out during the game last week that we have our backup. He completed 8-of-11 passes for 115yds outplaying competing QB Brock Osweilier. Let’s see how he plays this next week, but I hope we see him on the roster this September.

The Dolphins play their second game this Friday in Carolina at 7:30pm. Am I hoping for a win? Sure. But more importantly, I’m just hoping to avoid any more injuries and watch guys battling it out for that roster spot. Maybe Gesicki will make that one-handed touchdown catch this week. It could happen.