Week 2 prediction: Why the Miami Dolphins will fall to Ravens
By Matt Serniak
Look, I don’t want to have this feeling inside of me. I don’t want to see the world after a Dolphin’s loss on Sunday against the Ravens and see everyone rag on the team in every way. I don’t want to see the internet explode with take after take about how Tua isn’t the guy and that Miami hasn’t changed. I don’t want to be 1-1 and have everyone repeat the same tired, but usually accurate line, that the Miami Dolphins can’t win big games. But sadly, that’s just how I see it happening. I sincerely hope I am very wrong.
My reasoning for this has a few layers to it. First, I don’t like at all how the Miami Dolphin’s offensive line is heading into a road game against the Ravens. Terron Armstead is currently questionable but I imagine he will at least start the game. Whether he finishes it is anyone’s guess.
Austin Jackson is out and I realize that you must think that the entire world has flipped upside down or that we’re living in the Bizzaro World from Seinfeld, but this team needs Austin Jackson. Yes, I just said that. Greg Little didn’t play well at all last week and we know what Larnel Coleman is. I’m so nervous about the offensive line that I just loosened my tie and I’m not even wearing one.
The shaky offensive line I expect to see is a recipe for disaster against the Raven’s front. Michael Pierce, Justin Madubuike, Calis Campbell, Odafe Oweh, and Justin Houston I think will feast on the inexperienced, as a unit, and undermanned Dolphin’s line.
What that leads to is the worst-case scenario which is Tua Tagovailoa having to create plays when things break down. Tua does a few things well, contrary to what everyone says. But for him to do those things well, he needs the cleanest pocket ever created. If anything doesn’t go the way it was designed, he gets those happy feet, and then who the hell knows what kind of mind-numbing play he’s going to make?
History is also against the Miami Dolphins when it comes to playing in Baltimore. Here’s a disgusting truth.
Now, I know Mike McDaniel and anyone with a smart brain will tell me that those past Miami teams have nothing to do with this year’s Miami team. You’re exactly right. But, that doesn’t mean I just simply forget about the poundings and destroyings the Miami Dolphins have suffered when they travel to Baltimore. Let’s break the cycle.
I also like the Ravens to win because I’ve seen what the Miami Dolphins do when there are actual stakes in a game. Last year against the Titans, two seasons ago against the Bills, and even the game after the Miami Miracle against the Vikings all ended in the same embarrassing way. Tomorrow’s game actually has stakes if you could believe it for a week two game.
Right now, not many are giving the Miami Dolphins much real respect, and by real respect I mean actually putting them up around that top level in the AFC. I get it. Miami typically flounders at some point and last week they beat a very bad Patriots team. Now they play one of the big boys of the AFC. The thought is if Miami and Mike McDaniel are at all for real, you win this game. If you lose, then it’s the same old Dolphin’s narrative. The Miami Dolphins typically don’t rise to the occasion when there are actual expectations. This is the game to zag on that.
If Miami wins then you better believe that on Monday they will be the talk of the day and Mike McDaniel will be looked at as a genius. I want to live in that reality so very badly.
Because of the offensive line, irrational history, and the expectations that are now on the team, I have the Baltimore Ravens winning the game. To much heat on the offensive line thus too much pressure on Tua.
Now if the Miami Dolphins go out there, run the ball decently, exploit matchups that are in Miami’s favor due to injuries like no Ronnie Stanley and potentially no Marlon Humphrey, keep the penalties low, sustain drives and not go three and out, keep pinning the Ravens deep in their territory, be solid on special teams, contain Lamar Jackson, guard the tight ends, I repeat guard the friggin tight ends, and Tua’s connection to Tyreek Hill and Jaylen Waddle progresses then we may have something here.
But I just need to see it first. I want this team to make a believer out of me. Win this game and then you’ll have, probably, the biggest game of the week happening next week when the Dolphins play Buffalo. Lose tomorrow and the season isn’t anywhere near lost but all the same tired, beaten-in-the-ground talking points will be out there again. That’s just the way it is.
PREDICTION: Dolphins 20 Ravens 23
Enjoy the weekend and have a blast with week 2 Miami Dolphin’s football. I know I will. I hope my words don’t infuriate you too much but that’s on you. I understand that many will say that I’m not a true fan or some sort of derivative of that because I’m not blindly picking the Dolphins to win on a Dolphin’s themed site. Do what you will. As I said, I hope I am very wrong, and when I write my recap on Monday that I can say I was way off. I hope that’s the case. Fins Up
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