clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

The Miami Dolphins were fearless when it came to attacking opposing defenses on third down

Third down almost seemed like a party trick for Mike McDaniel and Miami’s passing attack.

Miami Dolphins v Baltimore Ravens Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images

Nine years ago — Oct. 12, 2014 — Miami Dolphins head coach Joe Philbin told offensive coordinator Bill Lazor to run the ball on Third-and-8 late in a game against the Green Bay Packers.

Philbin, who was feeling “queasy” at the time, didn’t play for the win and the Dolphins fell to 2-3 with a loss to the Packers. That game ended on another questionable play call by Miami’s coaching staff — we’ll save that story for another day.

Miami finished 25th in yards per pass attempt (6.8) and roughly a decade later, it’s safe to say we’re witnessing a remodeled mindset and offensive attack. The Dolphins finished third in yards per pass attempt. Wide receiver Jaylen Waddle led the league in yards per reception while Tyreek Hill finished second in both receptions and yards.

None of it would’ve been possible without Tua Tagovailoa leading the league in yards per pass attempt — along with a passing attack that never quit. NFL Analyst Warren Sharp took to Twitter on Wednesday with an interesting stat that speaks to how aggressive Miami’s passing attack was.

The Dolphins finished first with 51 percent of passes thrown at and beyond the sticks on third down. The Atlanta Falcons finished second with 50 percent, the New Orleans Saints were third at 45 percent of the time.

Running back Raheem Mostert noted that McDaniel apologized for the team not consistently running the football in 2022. That said, it’s hard to imagine McDaniel will not continue to lean on the trio of Tagovailoa, Waddle, and Hill throughout the 2023 season.