I’ve written this column every week for nearly 3 NFL seasons now, and for the first time ever, the Miami Dolphins have left me speechless.
A 70-20 (yes, you read that correctly) victory over the Denver Broncos in Week 3 has left many around the league stunned as well, and asking the question, “Are the Miami Dolphins the best team in football?”
That’s a question for another day, but for now, here’s three reasons why Miami was able to overpower Denver:
Reason 1: Raheem Mostert & De’Von Achane
The Miami Dolphins’ running game has come leaps and bounds from last season, and it’s a big reason why the team not only beat the Broncos in Week 3, but is undefeated to start the season.
Veteran back Raheem Mostert carried the ball 13 times for 82 yards and three touchdowns, but rookie De’Von Achane was the real star of the day. Achane racked up an astounding 203 rushing yards on 18 carries, and added two touchdowns for good measure. Oh, and if their efforts on the ground weren’t enough, both backs also added a receiving touchdown on the day.
Reason 2: Mike McDaniel
I’m running out of words to describe Dolphins head coach Mike McDaniel, so instead, here’s a few of the records that the Dolphins broke on Sunday:
- First team in NFL history with five passing TDs and five rushing TDs in a single game
- Most points in a game in franchise history (70)
- Most touchdowns in a game in franchise history (10)
- Most total yards in a game in franchise history (726)
- Most touchdowns in a game by a rookie (De’Von Achane, 4)
Yeah, that’s elite coaching.
In fact, I’m willing to go as far as to say that McDaniel may just be the most creative play-designer in the NFL, and that includes the likes of Andy Reid, Sean McVay, and Kyle Shanahan. Sunday was an absolute masterclass from Miami’s head coach, and his offense ran rings around a hapless Broncos defense.
Mike McDaniel was born and raised in Colorado and was even the Broncos' ball boy at one point. Two seasons ago the Broncos needed to fill their HC vacancy and didn't even let McDaniel interview...— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) September 25, 2023
Yesterday, Miami dropped 70 on the Broncos pic.twitter.com/fktx70veOu
Reason 3: ???
The Dolphins were so good on Sunday, that I’m genuinely asking the question—Do we need a third reason?
I mean, Tua Tagovailoa? Miami’s defense? Jason Sanders, who made 10/10 PAT attempts?
The Dolphins were perfect in every single aspect of the game on Sunday, and limiting the team’s performance to just three reasons feels...underwhelming. Everyone played exceptionally, and the entire organization, from top to bottom, deserves their plaudits. In terms of pure production on a football field, this was the best performance in team history.
So, with that said, the third reason goes to...everyone (including the fans).
The Dolphins go back on the road in Week 4, traveling up north to take on the Buffalo Bills (2-1). Historically, Miami has struggled to win in Buffalo, winning just 1 of their last 8 trips to Highmark Stadium. The Bills are coming off a blowout win of their own, with a 37-3 win over the Washington Commanders in Week 3.