Archive for: October 2010

Dolphins/Steelers Refs worse than OJ Jury

First, let me apologize, as I had a business trip for my other job that didn’t allow me to post anything for the past week. We’re back!

That title is not an outrageous statement. I attended my first ever game at Sun Life on Sunday and witnessed a robbery. There was even video evidence of the robbery, but the ‘police’ brought down the wrong guy.

As I sat and watched replay after replay, it became clearer and clearer that Big Ben DID fumble before crossing the goal line. AND, those replays not only showed white jerseys on top of the ball, BUT they also showed a white jersey coming out of the pile with the ball. On top of all of that, a white jersey HANDED the ball to the official. What more proof did the jury…I mean officials need?!

At least the jury in the OJ case had the excuse that he wasn’t caught on video. WHAT WAS THE REF WATCHING UNDER THE HOOD? Re-runs of Livern and Shirley?! Seriously, I know the ridicule only lasted for a day or two nationwide, but this was one of the worst calls in the NFL in years! And, as a result, the Dolphins are 3-3 and will need a big second half of the year to make the playoffs. Yes, I know, I know, they had other chances, didn’t capitalize on mistakes by the Steelers. All true, and I 100% agree. BUT, when the Dolphins outplay the Steelers, a 5-1 team by the way, and there is video proof of a horrendous call, you can’t help but be ticked off.

On top of all of that craziness, there was a stat book error by the refs. The incorrectly assessed Chad Henne an INT on the last play the Dolphins ran. James Harrison was credited with an INT that literally bounced a yard away from him on the ground, before bringing it. It should have been a fumble and wouldn’t have changed any type of outcome in the game. However, it was another terrible call by the officiating crew that SHOULD be fined or suspended. They were THAT bad.

I might be done ranting for a little while now! Looking ahead, as I’m hoping the team already has, the Dolphins head to Cinncinnati to take on the Bengals (2-4). The Dolphins have been good on the road (3-0) and need this game and the next one in the worst way. Think of this, Phin Nation, the Dolphins have lost to only the 5-1 teams in the AFC. They were in 2 of those games. This team is not far away from being a serious contender.

AFC East Preview: The Week Ahead

The Jets have jumped out to the early lead in the AFC East sporting a 5-1 record.  The Pats are close behind at 4-1, while the Dolphins 3-2 and Bills 0-5 are chasing.  What’s in store for the week ahead:

New York Jets

The Jets are coming off their robbery of a victory against the Broncos last week and are on a bye.  Next week they welcome in the Green Bay Packers.

New England Patriots

The Pats are coming off a great come from behind win against the Ravens in OT.  They head to San Diego to take on the 2-4 Chargers.  This should be a better game than it looks as the Chargers need to turn their season around quickly if they want to have a prayer for the playoffs.

Miami Dolphins

The Dolphins are at home this week against the Steelers and look to gain ground on the Pats/Jets.  If they can run the ball effectively and limit the mistakes, this is a winnable game for the Phins.

Buffalo Bills

The Bills are 0-5.  Is anyone really scared of them making a run?  This week they take on the 4-2 Baltimore Ravens in a game that Phins fans should actually be rooting FOR the Bills.  Yes it’s early to start thinking about playoff implications.  BUT, we want any possible AFC contender to win.

There you have it, the week ahead preview.  Happy Rooting!  Go Phins!!!

Pre Game: Pittsburgh Steelers @ Miami Dolphins 1pm

Phin Nation has been away for a few days, so we apologize for the lack of info. We’ll try to get to everything here in preparation for the Steelers @ Dolphins tomorrow.

Jared Odrick is done for the year. The Dolphins officialy placed the rookie DE on the Injured Reserve list yesterday, ending his season. After an offseason of rehab, hopefully he can come back next year and realize the potential he showed in early 2010.

Onto the game. The Dolphins face a tough test tomorrow, facing one of the best teams in all of the NFL. Luckily for the Dolphins, they are getting the Steelers in Miami. With the weather scheduled to be 86 and hot, the Dolphins primary goal should be to keep the game close, run the ball often and wear down the Steelers in the South Florida Heat.

3 Keys to the Game:
Key #1 – Control the Clock
The Dolphins MUST realize that their strength is controlling the clock and running the football. Yes, the Steelers defense if very good against the run. BUT, the Dolphins must stay committed to running the ball. Even if they are only getting 2 yards a carry, they must do so to wear on the Steelers and use the 1PM kickoff and heat to their advantage. The two games the Dolphins tried airing it out, they lost

Key #2 – Pressure Big Ben
Big Ben is making only his second start of the season and showed some signs of rust last week. They must get into the backfield and into his head, causing him to hurry throws. He’s more mobile than people think and can buy time in the pocket. Cameron Wake and Koa Misi must apply pressure and get hits, if not sacks.

Key #3 – Special Teams
Last week the special teams showed improvement from their embarrassing performance against the Pats. They must continue to show improvement and minimize/eliminate the dumb plays and penalties. Bobby Carpenter’s issues on special teams cost him a job. The Dolphins must protect well in kicking situations and must block well on returns. Maybe this is the week Nolan Caroll breaks one?

My Prediction: Steelers 24- Phins 20 (I hope I’m wrong!)

I’ll be at the game tomorrow, my first ever Dolphins game IN MIAMI. LET’S GO DOLPHINS!!!!

Alriiiight Miami – Dolphins beat Packers 23-20 in OT

Following their bye week, the Dolphins came out and outplayed the injury depleted Packers. I am not about to rain on the Dolphins parade because Aaron Rogers, a top 5 QB and they beat him. They beat him with a control the clock offense, a pressure defense, and a special teams unit that looked completely different than the one we saw 2 weeks ago.

Chad Henne had a pick, but he stabalized and was effecient, leading the Dolphins to the victory. It seems as the season goes on Henne is really starting to understand how best to target and use Brandon Marshall.

I want to point out that Dan Henning deserves some credit. He returned to the ground game and it paid off. Yes, the Dolphins only averaged 3.8 yards per carry, but he stuck with it. And in overtime, the running game moved the ball down the field on the worn down Packers.

I also want to point out the GREAT play call in the 4th quarter. The Dolphins like to roll Henne and the pocket to the right on a play or 2 every game. The Packers knew that. But the Dolphins had a clever twist to their rollout – they kept Jake Long and Anthony Fasano on the left side and Fasano ran untouched into the endzone for a big 22 yard TD.

The defense had it’s moments of trouble. BUT, they pressured Rogers and Cameron Wake had another coming out party, totaling 3 sacks. Watching Wake play is unbelievable. The guy gets held on almost every play he rushes the QB. He is a truly disruptive force and will be for years to come. The other OLB that will be around for a while is Koa Misi. Misi has 3 sacks on the year and fumble recovery for a TD. These two youngsters have bright futures with the Miami Dolphins.

Dan Carpenter kicked 3 field goals yesterday and the the kick return & coverage units did a great job. Makes you wonder if an earlier coaching change wouldn’t have helped the Dolphins in the offseason instead of 4 games in.

3 road games, all in tough environments, all wins. Granted the Bills are not a good team, but the Dolphins have won AT Minnesota and AT Green Bay in the first 6 weeks of the season. Now, they have to turn their attention to the Pittsburgh Steelers and win a home game. This team knows they are good, now they must show it in front of the home fans. A win on Sunday and the Dolphins will be right back where they want to be. Remember, the early part of the Dolphins schedule was going to be tough, we all knew that. But, if they can win on Sunday and improve to 4-2, the momentum will begin to turn in the Dolphins favor as we head into the winter months.

Alriiiiiiiiiiight Miami!!!

Miami Dolphins Practice Update – 10/13

Yesterday every player for the Miami Dolphins took part in practice. Pretty nice to hear considering the team the Dolphins will play on Sunday has a laundry list of injuries.

John Jerry was back working with the first team, as was Channing Crowder, and Jake Long. All 3 should play Sunday. Having Long in there is crucial,especially if Clay Matthews Jr. is able to play Sunday. Long protects Henne’s blind side and there is a big drop off after Long at LT.

Jerry playing should help the Dolphins running attack that has been sporadic this year. While his pass protection still needs work, Jerry is a road grater in the run game.

The biggest return from injury will be Channing Crowder. Crowder has been out all year with his groin injury and appears ready for some playing time on Sunday. Teaming Crowder with a perennial Pro-Bowler like Karlos Dansby, will make the Dolphins run defense and blitzes MUCH better.

Jared Odrick took part in practice but was a limited. I would say Odrick is questionable at best for this week, but if he has no setbacks, he’ll be out there next Sunday against the Pittsburgh Steelers.

Quote of the Day – Vontae Davis on Donald Driver “He’s old enough to be my dad!”

Dolphins Off Day – 10/12

The Dolphins had an off day today and will resume preparations for the Green Bay Packers tomorrow.  The Dolphins expect to have John Jerry and Channing Crowder back for Sunday’s game.  Jared Odrick will probably be listed as doubtful and hopes to play next weekend against the Steelers.

Last night, as I sat watching the Vikings play terrible on offense for 3 quarters, I realized that the Jets are a better team than I have given them credit for.  The Jets are 4-1 and have a 3-0 record in the division.  The Dolphins are 1-2 in the division.  AT BEST, the Dolphins will get to 4-2, which is probably where the Jets will end up as they have another date with the Bills.  The Dolphins will need to beat the Jets (and Pats) outright for the division because they’ve made tie-breakers within division, tough.  We’ll see how the season plays out.  Hopefully the Dolphins can get back to winning ways this weekend at Lambeau!

AFC East Preview – The Week Ahead

The AFC East Preview post will be on weekly.  As a fan, I always find myself looking to see who the Dolphins closest rivals are playing in the coming week.  As such, we’ll overview the AFC East every week to see who everyone is playing.  As the season moves along and we can seriously start talking about playoff races, we will expand and include all games that impact the Dolphins.  Here’s a look at this week’s AFC East Preview:

New York Jets (3-1)

The Jets lost their opener to the Ravens, but have rebounded very nicely, completing a sweep of the AFC East.  They will play the Vikings tonight on Monday Night Football and look to move to 4-1 and take a 0.5 game lead on the Patriots.  Next week, the Jets travel to Denver to take on a surprising Broncos team.  Traveling across country on a short week might be a tough task for the Jets.  It will be interesting to see how they do in these next two games that are by no means pushovers.

New England Patriots (3-1)

The Pats only loss this year has been to the Jets.  They are 2-1 in the division and have enjoyed a bye week this week.  They will host the 4-1 Baltimore Ravens in Foxboro on Sunday.  This should be a great game, one that I’m really looking forward to seeing.  This is one of those games that could help determine playoff seeding or qualification later in the year.

Miami Dolphins (2-2)

The Dolphins, like the Patriots are coming off their bye week.  They’ve had some time to heal up after dropping games to both the Jets and Pats.  Hopefully they can turn things around this week as they head into Lambaeu to take on the Green Bay Packers.  The Dolphins have a tough next 4 games.  BUT, if they can survive, with say a 2-2 record, they could be in good position to make a late run at the playoffs.  The schedule softens up a bit after these next 4 games.

Buffalo Bills (0-5)

They stink.  Enough said, right?  The Bills should celebrate this week, as it’s the first week since the season started that they will not lose a game.  It’s their bye week.  The Bills should probably have though long and hard about drafting a QB in the 2010 draft.  They will almost certainly need to do so in 2011.  It’s going to be a long year for the Bills, one that will probably land them a top 5 pick, if not #1 overall.  Having said all that, the Dolphins could very well lose to them later this year :)

So the Dolphins, Pats, and Jets all have a tough week ahead.  Who comes out victorious?  We’ll have to watch the games and find out!

Phins Back at Practice – 10/11

After a 3 day weekend for the players, they returned to the practice field today.  Well most of the Dolphins that is.  Jake Long will get another day to rest his knee in hopes that he can play this Sunday against the Packers.  Channing Crowder was back, practicing with the first unit today.  The team also hopes to have Jared Odrick back for Sunday’s game.

The Packers, meanwhile could be missing their top 2 tight ends for the game and their quarterback Aaron Rogers is having tests done for a possible concussion.  The Dolphins are coming off a bye week and look to get right back over the .500 mark after dropping their last two games.

Tonight, we should all be rooting hard for the Vikings and their new friend Randy Moss, to beat up on the Jets.  A loss tonight would drop the Jets to 3-2, which would definitely help the Phins.  LETS GO VIKES!

Under Construction!!

Phin Nation is a blog devoted to loyal fans of the Miami Dolphins! We expect to be up and running by the end of the week, just in time to cover the Miami Dolphins/Green Bay Packers game on Sunday!