The Miami Dolphins are in the middle of a big time turnaround. O.k. not so “big time” it’s been two games against. One against an under performing KC team as evidenced by their route last week and the Washington Redskins who would probably be better if Curtis Painter of the Colts were their starting QB. Yes they are that bad. In the process of this two game win streak, leaders are emerging…Karlos Dansby, the defensive line is getting sacks…what 8 or 9 in two weeks?, the corners are making INT’s, and low and behold the Dolphins offense is using TE’s. In the passing game.
The world is supposed to end in December 2012 but the Dolphins use of Anthony Fasano and Charles Clay may signify that end sooner. O.k all kidding aside what woke up Daboll and Sparano? Something had to give. I mean for the first seven weeks they were non-existent and you can’t point to improved line play when they right side is still playing as poorly as they did all season. Literally, someone on that Dolphins coaching staff decided to finally wake up and open up the offense. Who would have thought it would actually work? Hello…Dan Henning do you hear that?
So now that Dolphins fans are all fired up again for a season that is all but numerically lost, yes there are those out there in forum world who insist that the Dolphins can still run the table and make the playoffs. Here is my promise to all of you. If the Dolphins make the playoffs this year, I will wear I sign around my neck that says “I have no faith” while wearing a Jet green dress. Folks, the Dolphins are not going to make the playoffs.
While I know that will not resonate with some fans, I no longer look at this team through the simpler eyes of a normal fan. I actually study them now and crunch numbers and the numbers are not on their side. Nor is their play. For example, despite the win against Washington, the team struggled offensively until later in the game….let’s not forget it was only a 4 point game at half-time. At the end of the third quarter it was 13-9. Hardly a game the Dolphins were primed to run away with.
The Dolphins face the Bills this week and it really doesn’t matter if the Bills are horrible or if they are the 2011 Green Bay Packers. They play Miami tough. Very tough. They also got embarrassed by the Cowboys last week. They are one game behind in the division and losers of two straight. Miami will be an appealing match-up to right their ship and that is why this game will be a good barometer on the direction this team actually has taken.
A win against Buffalo will prove a few things. The Dolphins have indeed turned it around. They Dolphins have no excuses for playing so poorly all season. The Dolphins actually have talent on this roster. It doesn’t save anyone’s job, doesn’t curtail the outcome of the playoff picture except hand the Bills a major blow, it provides us with a real gauge on the teams progress.
This week, I want to see more Charles Clay. I like watching him and his presence doesn’t have me whimpering “Louuuuu” anymore. The kid is playmaker and the Dolphins have a steal if his progress continues. I want to see Daniel Thomas. He has become forgotten on that offense and is supposed to be the starting RB. Reggie Bush can be exciting but are you not tired of seeing him tote the ball up the middle? It doesn’t fool anyone and the right side of the line can’t block.
I also want to see if Matt Moore continues his improvement. Moore is going to be an important piece to the Dolphins puzzle next year as he will be the only one under contract. He will either serve as the back-up to a young rookie upstart or will lead the team while the rookie gets up to speed. Make no mistake folks, Moore is going to have a role in Miami next year.
Defensively, I want to see Jimmy Wilson knock more heads and I want continued improvement from Kevin Burnett in the middle backer spot. Dansby needs to continue his leadership and to be honest, I want to see more from the end/olb spot not named Jason Taylor. Taylor doesn’t have it anymore but with him playing we don’t get to see the young guys get better. Oh, and Sparano…I like the Odrick “Pee Wee Herman” dance. Let’s see more of that.
Finally, there needs to be much more production from the safety spots, specifically from Reshad Jones. He simply isn’t getting better and without Chris Clemons healthy enough to push him repeatedly, he suffers.
Should be a good game and I think the Dolphins will continue their turnaround and the Bills will continue theirs as well.