Miami Dolphins need uptempo offense
By Dan Heaning
When Miami Dolphins head coach Joe Philbin was hired, fans and experts alike were giddy at the promise of an uptempo offense.
When offensive coordinator Bill Lazor was hired last offseason, those same fans and experts became even more excited at the notion of a Chip Kelly-like tempo offense.
Neither one of those things have happened.
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The Dolphins have one of the faster offenses in the league, they finished 11th in PACE stats last season and finished in the same spot in points per game. At first, that pace might seem like an accomplishment until you see that teams like the Jacksonville Jaguars, Oakland Raiders and Cleveland Browns had faster offenses.
That’s not exactly the Philadelphia Eagles style pace fans dreamt about before last season. In fact, the team moved to the line slightly slower than they did before. In 2013, the Dolphins averaged 26.66 seconds between plays while going 26.95 seconds this past season.
Now it was the team’s first year under Lazor’s scheme. However, that wasn’t much of an issue for Kelly and the Eagles in his first season as head coach, and even Philbin said the offense needed to go faster before last season.
The bottom line is, for 2015, the Dolphins have an offense as young and quick as they have ever had. They need to take advantage of that youth, speed, and endurance by getting to the line quicker.
Philbin doesn’t utilize a ground and pound style so time of possession – an overrated stat – doesn’t matter much to the offense. Lazor’s quick strike, short range passing game can only get better if the Dolphins get to the line with all possible speed.
With a no huddle offense, opposing defenses can’t get fresh legs on the field because they have to get into position. The Miami offensive players are mostly young enough where they can run a constant no huddle without getting exhausted. Using their players youth to their advantage will be key for the Dolphins offense.
Think about. Playing that style in the Miami heat where only the Dolphins are – somewhat – used to it? Opposing defensive players will be dropping like flies. It’s a whole new way to turn the elements against the opposition especially early in the season.
With Devante Parker’s foot injury, that puts one of the most promising young players in a precarious position. Parker’s injury limits his ability to get into the kind of shape you need to run that style, but one player cannot deter the whole offense’s need.
This must be a goal for Miami and there are no more excuses. Tannehill is experienced in the offense, the wide receiver position is completely revamped with youth, and the coaching staff had a whole season to get on the same page.
It’s time Philbin actually delivered on the uptempo style Dolphins fans have been clamouring for since he was hired. If Miami can run it like they can, they’ll turn in more points and more wins in 2015.