Forgive us for this late breakdown of the Miami Dolphins win over the Carolina Panthers Friday night. But we wanted to review all of the tape to give our full thoughts on the game….and frankly, it was a busy weekend! The Dolphins beat the Panthers on Friday night 20-10, and actually won a home game (throw a parade!). But as in all preseason games, it’s more important how you play than if you win. After an ugly opening game against the Falcons, the Dolphins seemed to improve in a number of areas, which we’ll get to in a few moments. However, remember that the team the Dolphins were playing on Friday night was the worst team in the NFL in 2010. They were bad enough to earn the #1 pick in the draft, and used it to select Cam Newton.
As we mentioned, the Dolphins looked good in many of the major areas on Friday night. They jumped out to a 20-0 lead and dominated the first half of play, when mostly starters were playing. Here are our thoughts on the key components of the game:
Henne threw 2 picks and looked out of sorts against the Falcons….But he rebounded nicely against the Panthers. We’re not saying he’s the next elite QB based on his 1st half performance, but he helped prevent Dolphins fans from chanting ‘We Want Moore”. Henne didn’t throw an INT or a TD in the game, but he was able to get the ball into the hands of the playmakers around him. After all, this was the Dolphins theory, wasn’t it? If they couldn’t bring in another QB to challenge Henne, why not help him by giving him more weapons. He targeted Brandon Marshall, Davone Bess, and Reggie Bush a lot in the first half. He was 15 for 24 and threw for 194 yards. He commanded the huddle and was accurate for the most part (except on a couple of OPEN deep balls). Again, he’s not as bad as he looked against the Falcons or as ‘good’ as he looked against the Panthers.
The Dolphins brought in Reggie Bush to add an electric player to the backfield….one they haven’t had since Ricky was in his prime. He didn’t disappoint in his season debut for the Dolphins. Bush rushed for 48 yards on 8 carries and caught 2 balls for 33 yards. He showed that he can take even a checkdown pass and make something positive out of it.