Takeaways from Dolphins win over Chargers

The Miami Dolphins won the biggest game of their season on Sunday. It was a win that they desperately needed and one that keeps their playoff hopes alive. In fact, the Dolphins over the Chargers, combined with some other results, catapulted them into a tie for the 6th seed in the AFC, with the Jets.

Photo Courtesy of Dolphins.com

Photo Courtesy of Dolphins.com

The Dolphins didn’t exactly make it look easy against the Chargers, but they held on to pick up a win that could turn their season around. In the midst of the bullying story, this win showed that this team intends to fight, scratch, and claw to the very end.

What I liked
Ryan Tannehill – Tannehill put together a decent, but not spectacular performance on Sunday. He threw an ugly pick and his deep ball to Mike Wallace still needs a lot of work. BUT, he rebounded from the early interception and made the plays he needed to make.
Charles Clay – Clay has filled in nicely for Dustin Keller and his touchdown on Sunday showed that he is a threat to run after be catches the ball.
Daniel Thomas – Was it a great performance? Do I like him? No. But, Thomas should be commended for a solid effort on Sunday. He gained some big chunks of yards on the ground when the Dolphins really needed them.
Brent Grimes – Every week I watch this guy and every week he makes a big play. None was bigger than his “KNOCK IT DOWN” pass defense at the end of the game. Dolphins should seriously think abou extending his contract….soon.
Offensive line – Were they great? No. But they did the one thing they needed to do: They kept Tannehill alive. The OLine gave up 4 sacks, which isn’t good. But considering the team had 3 starters out and it could’ve been a lot worse. They played better than I expected.

What I didn’t like
Tannehill to Wallace – It’s game 10 and these two still can’t get on the same page. Wallace had his man beat by 3-4 yards and Tannehill woefully underthrew him. On other plays, Wallace looks like he’s running the wrong route. GET IT TOGETHER!!!
Run Defense – I’m so tired of hearing about how the Dolphins strength is their defensive line. I’m sorry, but this defensive line has been gashed by opponents’ in games this season. STEP UP!!!
Brian Hartline – Yes, he had an okay game. But, he also had 2 big drops which could’ve contributed to a loss. Hartline makes his money by being dependable. If he’s dropping passes and not creating separation, he’s not being dependable.

Overall, I thought the Dolphins played better than last week’s ugly performance. While the game was going on I was frustrated by the Dolphins defense because it seemed like they couldn’t get off the field. Yet, when I look back on the game as a whole, the Dolphins defense bent, but didn’t break. They allowed an early touchdown, but only a total of 3 field goals the rest of the way. Great job by them and a good job by the Dolphins coaches for figuring out how to run the ball effectively.

I also want to give some credit to Mike Sherman, who I’ve been hard on. Sherman didnt sit pat with a 1 or 4 point lead, be was aggressive. I liked that. I wish that be would run the ball more, earlier in the game…but I’ll take what I can get!