I think it is time that we all take a minute to thank the Miami Dolphins. For the first time in quite a while the Dolphins are relevant in October. I know when I say a while I seem to be omitting the 2008 season, but I thank Bernard Pollard for that season not the Dolphins, sorry. With a win this Sunday against the New York Jets, the Dolphins will not only go to 4-3 in the record column but they will also enter November as a playoff contender.
I do realize it may be just a little premature to use the P-word, but this season I cannot seem to contain my excitement. I am excited on a week to week basis to see how they will do. In seasons past I waited week to week to see how bad they would lose or what monumental error they would make. Once again, I realize that the margins they have won by have been slim at times, but the same can be said about their losses.
I am truly a believer that on any given Sunday any team can win. Yes, I know how cliché that statement is, but without it how can you explain the entire AFC this season? The Dolphins are now entering the “soft” portion of their schedule, a term which scares me equally as much as anything else. In the past I would just assume losses for the following games which they should win. If the Dolphins can get their act solidified on both sides of the ball then the following 4 games should be winnable.
It would seem that the natural progression of the season is in fact beginning to show a growing maturity on both offense and defense. Ryan Tannehill has gone from an interception machine to a master at threading the needle on important passes. Reggie Bush really has become the premiere running back he promised us he would. We’ve gone from a group of gentlemen who are meant to catch the ball to an actual wide receiver group, and if Jabar Gaffney can get on the field and contribute the Dolphins could end up with one of the better wide receiver groups in football.
On the defensive side they are doing what I had hoped they could. Sean Smith is starting to shut receivers down while the defensive line does their best to torment and torture opposing quarterbacks. All I know is if I looked up and Cameron Wake was running towards me I might wet myself.
Indeed I no longer have to hide my allegiance to the Dolphins as I walk around New England. I can proudly display my sideline cap and bright orange shirt as a statement that the Dolphins are here to compete. Around my parts the New England Patriots will obviously always rule supreme, but with a few more wins or even quality performances I believe you will start to see the uprising of Teal and Orange clothing in areas other than Miami.
So thank you, Joe Philbin, Ryan Tannehill, Brian Hartline, Reggie Bush, Cameron Wake, Sean Smith, and yes even to Jeff Ireland for giving Miami fans a team once again that we are proud to root for, and maybe with a few more wins Dan Marino may be able to start picking the Dolphins to win during the pregame shows without laughter in the background.