So far the Miami Dolphins have won a shootout in week one against the Chargers in Los Angeles. In week two they had to fend off a charging Patriots team trying to rally for a late game victory. After two weeks, both Dolphins games have been close. What will this week hold?
The Broncos come into Hard Rock Stadium with two losses to open their season but both were losses by a combined 3 points. Two one week and one the next. This week, the Broncos are going to face a Dolphins team that is believing in themselves.
Sure, there are a lot of things that could go wrong in any week of football and the Broncos are well-coached. The Dolphins talent, especially on offense, is hard for any team to defend against and the Broncos are going to find it hard to do so against a Dolphins team that looks like they will have Jaylen Waddle back on the field as well.
Tyreek Hill is going to face double and possibly triple coverage and the Broncos defense is going to try to get to Tua Tagovailoa and force him to play the dump pass and outlet receivers. The Patriots and Chargers have not had much luck in that area.
I suspect that the Dolphins are going to find wide-open lanes for guys like Durham Smythe, River Cracraft, and Braxton Berrios, but I also see an opportunity for Hill to go over 100 yards as a receiver and Waddle could as well. Yes, the Dolphins duel threats could pass the century mark on Sunday.
If the Broncos are able to slow down the Dolphins receiving core, something the Patriots did well enough, Miami has shown they can put points on the board and yards on the ground. Miami's rushing attack is getting better because the offensive line is playing the best football of maybe 8 years now.
Something has finally started to click with the Dolphins line and that credit has to go to new offensive line coach Butch Barry.
If the Dolphins offense wasn't good enough, the Dolphins defense is playing very well after an opening game that saw them gutted on the ground. They cleaned that up considerably against the Patriots.
The Broncos have a decent run game and a decent passing game but they are not elite in either one and Miami should match up well with the Broncos offense. Getting Jaelan Phillips back will be a big plus but as we learned last week, Andrew Van Ginkel is more than capable of filling in.
Keeping AVG on the field is important because his consistency is better than any other player right now on that side of the ball.
Miami should be able to get pressure on Russell Wilson, keep the run game in check and handle the Broncos good but not elite WRs although it looks like Jerry Jeudy will be a full-go Sunday.
Overall, this is a game that the Dolphins should win even though it will be close early on. In the end, this is the type of game Miami has to win and if they win these types of games all year, the postseason will be much more achievable.
Prediction: Miami Dolphins 34 - Denver Broncos - 17.
Fan prediction: Because I don't want to jinx this, Miami 28 - Denver 24.