With week one for the Miami Dolphins in the books several players are trending upwards. A good sign for a team who is trying to rebuild without shaking up the roster.
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After watching the game on Sunday there were some pleasant surprises that some may not have expected after training camp and pre-season.
Williams’ pre-season wasn’t very good and many believed that his poor 2015 season would continue. William’s debut as a Dolphin was very solid. He made plays in the run game and pressured Wilson often. Unfortunately Williams was put in the concussion protocol and the defense struggled after he left the game. It was still a good sign to see him playing more like he did before Rex Ryan took over the Bills.
No one can say that Steen had a perfect game but for his first NFL action in a regular season game and the first time he played center at any level, Steen held his own against a formidable opponent. Only one time was there miscommunication between he and Ryan Tannehill. Tannehill was begging for the snap and had to use a timeout. Hard to hear over the Seattle crowd. Steen looks like he could easily grow into a starting center in the NFL and that could be fortuitous for the Dolphins who may be without Mike Pouncey a little longer.
Phillips has been dogged by the stigma that he tends to not play at 100% every play. In his two years with Miami, he has done very little. On Sunday, and injury to Earl Mitchell opened the door for Phillips to see more time. He made a couple of very nice stops. Phillips battled injuries all game but nothing that kept him out long. If Phillips can maintain his motivation and effort he may develop into the player that most thought he could be coming out of college.
Alonso looked very good on Sunday, at least most of the day. He was calling stunts and offensive looks throughout the game and made three tackles with eight assists. More importantly he escaped the game healthy and gave the Dolphins some hope that the middle of the linebacker group could flourish.
Foster looked more like he did two seasons ago when he made the Pro-Bowl and cruised over 1,000 yards. Foster looked very sharp in his debut and cut well coming off an Achille’s injury. Foster didn’t put up the rushing numbers that he has in the past. He carried 13 times for 38 yards but a lot of that can be placed on the shoulders of the offensive line who at times struggled with Seattle’s front defensive line.
Foster added 62 yards on three receptions however and looked good moving around the field.
Despite a few hiccups along the way and at the end, Vance Joseph had his team more than prepared to face a tough Seattle offense. The Dolphins harrassed quarterback Russel Wilson all day and forced two turnovers. In addition the much maligned secondary played well most of the day.
Joseph’s “wide-9” defense allowed pressure off the edges and kept the runners contained in the middle. Despite the loss and the 112 yards on the ground by Seattle. It was a solid effort against a team that many believe will challenge for a Super Bowl again this year.