NOV 25, 2012; Miami, FL, USA; Miami Dolphins quarterback Ryan Tannehill (17) runs the ball past Seattle Seahawks defensive end Chris Clemons (91) in the fourth quarter at Sun Life Stadium. The Dolphins defeated the Seahawks 24-21. Mandatory Credit: Robert Mayer-US PRESSWIRE

Patriots Loom After Dolphins Impressive Win


Will the real Miami Dolphins please stand up?  After almost everybody in the football world had written the Miami Dolphins off, they managed to win a close one at home against the Seattle Seahawks 24-21 this past Sunday.  The impressive victory for Miami has many wondering what type of team they really are.   Are they the non-shalant Dolphins who get dump-trucked at home by the sub-par Tennessee Titans?  Or are they the resilient, run-stopping Dolphins we saw this Sunday against Seattle?

No matter what the answer is to that question, division leader New England is heading to town as the Dolphins will need to be more like the team that showed up against Seattle or Tom Brady and the high powered Patriots offense could make it ugly.

More specifically, the Dolphins will need to play with that same chip on their shoulder that they possessed against the Seahawks.  They held Marshawn Lynch to his lowest yardage output in 20 games.  Their pass defense was decent but much improved from their performances during the three game losing streak. The Miami secondary will need to play one of their best games this Sunday if the Dolphins have any hope of slowing down Tom Brady.

Ryan Tannehill will have to attack the Patriots woeful 29th ranked pass defense as he did against a much better Seattle secondary. Tannehill was a solid 18-26 with 256 yards with a touchdown and a pick.  He engineered three long drives in the fourth quarter with the last drive resulting in a game winning field goal for Dan Carpenter. Yes, DC finally made a field goal in a crucial situation.

The special teams for Miami was not up to par against Seattle though as they gave up a 4th quarter kick-off return to give the Seahawks a 7 point lead. If Tannehill wasn’t throwing lasers and extending drives with his legs, Miami would have lost another close one and seemingly would have been out of the playoff hunt.  Instead though, Miami rallied behind their stingy defensive line(Starks and Solai) and linebackers (Burnett, Misi, Dansby) as well as their rookie leader Tannehill to pull out the crucial win.

They will need to bring this same type intensity to have a chance to beat their division rival Patriots at home.  Miami will most definitely need a win over New England to remain relevant in the AFC Wild Card hunt.  Miami (5-6) is one game back of a wild card spot.  Cincinnati and Pittsburgh are both 6-5 and just ahead of Miami for the last AFC playoff slot.

The 2012 season still has five games remaining and much is left to be sorted out, but a question of the Dolphin’s real identity is still left unanswered.  What team will we see against New England this weekend?  The team that believed all the hype and lost 3 games in a row, or the team that has something to prove each week?  If the latter of the two shows up, I sure like the Miami Dolphin’s chances.

 

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Tags: Miami Dolphins New England Patriots Ryan Tannehill Seattle Seahawks

  • gofins60

    “What team will we see against New England this weekend?”

    Inconsistency has been Miami’s problem for years now, and I wish that they would get some players who could play at a decent level every week. Miami does have enough talent right now to beat NE. The offense needs to score more than 20 points, and the defense needs to knock Brady on his butt for the entire 60 minutes. Can they do that? Sure. Will they? We’ll find out on Sunday!

  • Felicia Fitzgerald

    “If the latter of the two shows up, I sure like the Miami Dolphin’s chances”

    Poppycock! There’s no sense in getting anyone’s hopes up. The Dolphins are highly unlikely to win this game. The Dolphins have only beat bad teams (combined 23-31-1, win%: 0.418).

    The Patriots have gotten very good these past few weeks. I don’t think that it’ll be a blow out (like St. Louis, Indianapolis or New York). But I think that New England easily covers the current 9 pt spread.

  • Miami Jules

    It’s all about the game plan. I am convinced that at times both Coyle and Sherman have failed to come up with good strategies and or failed to make adjustments. I see it this way An agile game on offence will showcase Tannehill’s various skills. A stale game plan on offence ( #17 stay in the pocket hoping the o-line will hold the rush) will end up in the “bad Dolphins” showing up. Keep it quick hence keeping the foe’s defence off balance. Tell Bush to keep his hessitation moves to MAYBE 1 per play and full throttle ahead after that (when he runs decisevely good stuff happens). Get Marlon Moore as or more involved than in last week’s game, same thing with Clay, but do not be affraid to pull them out if they’re not being productive.
    Mr. Coyle (I know he reads PhinPhanatic), do not be affraid to rush the QB, look what happened against the Colts and at what New England was able to do against them with their rush. Tell Shawn Smith, you want him to PRESS and stop being lazy. Let’s have the “good Dolphins” show up this week and rip The Patriots to shreds

    • Miami Jules

      PS I also need to do my part. For the previous 3 weeks, I had been going on the “Live Game Chat” and for the last 3 weeks, our Dolphins lost…. last Sunday, I wasn unable to log on the the live chat and our Dolphins won…coincidence? I think not, so as much as I have enjoyed it, there’ll be no live game chatting for this dolphan… I’ll miss you guys, we I think we can all agree it is for the greater good.