Everyone is expecting a duel between Ryan Tannehill and Drew Brees tonight. Chances are, the game will likely come down to which QB plays better. That being said, I see the game coming down to a different player. To me, the X factor in tonight’s prime time game is Dolphins RB Lamar Miller.
We saw a glimpse of what Miller is capable of on his 49 yard burst last week against the Atlanta Falcons. Not only did Miller show great speed but he hit the hole without any dancing (something Reggie Bush was notorious for). If Miller can put together a couple of big runs against this Saints’ defense, it could mean the difference in the game.
The Saints’ run-defense is not exactly the Great Wall of China either. The Saints are giving up 5.3 yards per carry, and opposing teams have run for 111.3 yards per game through 3 weeks. What does this mean for Miami? It means run the ball. Take some pressure of Ryan Tannehill, open up the play-action passing game, and keep the ball out of number 9′s hands. It’s a no-brainer. The Falcons dominated Miami for the majority of last week’s game. How did they do it? They had a successful running game and kept the Miami offense off the field.
If Lamar Miller has a big game, I see the Dolphins leaving NOLA with a 4-0 record. Not only would Miller’s success relax Tannehill, but it would force the Saints to add defenders in the box, which would give Mike Wallace single man coverage on the outside. Miami has yet to establish a consistent running game thus far, and I can’t think of a better time to do it than on Monday Night Football against one of the best passing attacks in the NFL.
It’s Miller time, baby.