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PostPosted: Mon Dec 10, 2018 10:27 am 
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The Good

When the Dolphins beat the Patriots, this list gets considerably longer.

Let's start with the game winning play. It is being called the Miracle in Miami and required perfect execution by multiple people including a good pass by Ryan Tannehill, two well executed laterals by Stills and Parker and a terrific finish by Kenyan Drake. This is a once in a generation play and we're lucky to have experienced it in such a big game against a big time opponent.

Ryan Tannehill. Even though he didn't have to do much, what he did was near perfect. 14 of 19, 265 yards and 3 TDs against a team that completely shut him down earlier in the season.

The running game was in beast mode, gaining 189 yards on 21 carries and 2 touchdowns. Aside from the typicaly game by Frank Gore, Brandon Bolden, the former Patriot, made huge contributions with two runs for two touchdowns, including a 54 yarder.

It was nice to see Kenny Stills get in on the action with 8 catches for 135 yards and 1 TD.

The run defense was the best it has been all year, holding the Patriots to 77 yards on 30 carries. The last time the Dolphins faced the Patriots, they allowed 175 rushing yards. An almost 100 yard swing. Honorable mention to Raekwon McMillan, who was in on 9 tackles and honestly looked like a different player than he has all season.


The Bad

The Patriots still gained 344 yards and 3 touchdowns through the air. The absence of Xavien Howard was felt. The Patriots were still very efficient on 3rd down conversions and were able to hold the ball for 35 minutes.

What happened on special teams? The punts blocked by the Patriots. Our best unit failed to show up on the day that our two bad units sort of did.


The Ugly

While the offensive line created nice holes for the running backs, they also created nice holes for pass rushers. The interior line continues to be an issue in pass protection.


Overall

The Dolphins are very much in the playoff hunt. That being said, the Ravens seem to currently own all of the tie-breakers against Miami and the Colts while the Colts hold a head-to-head win against Miami. Miami needs to sweep the remaining three games and have some chips fall their way to make the playoffs. There is a chance the Dolphins could finish the season 10-6 and miss the playoffs.

Up next, the 6-5-1 Vikings (pending outcome of game against Seahawks), a team that boasts one of the better defenses in the NFL but a middle of the road offense that is last in rushing. It should be an interesting match up that could position the Dolphins well to finish the season off strong.

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 10, 2018 11:30 am 
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Finally get to enjoy reading one of these rather than reliving all of the let down performances from the previous day. Nice work Rich!

Tip of the cap to the defense for finding ways to slow down the NE offense in the second half. Never thought they would be held to a pair of field goals. They did it with a safety/slot corner being thrust into the number 1 role and a guy who is not ready to start games on the other boundary.

BIG test coming against Minnesota. Currently rank 11th in points allowed and 6th in yards allowed on defense. Even scarier is they are 8th in rushing yards allowed and Miami clearly needs to lean on Gore. Minnesota has scored 20+ points in 10 of 12 games this year so the offense will need to produce.

Baltimore hosts the Bucs and Browns, travels to the Chargers. Indy hosts the Cowboys and Giants, travels to Tennessee. Tennessee hosts Washington and Indy, travels to the Giants.

Miami needs Baltimore to lose to LA, Indy to lose to Tennessee and another team, and Tennessee basically not win out (because then Miami has to). If Miami beats Jacksonville and Buffalo they'll have the best conference record among them, Tennessee and Baltimore.

Indy seems to have the easiest path.


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 10, 2018 11:58 am 
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Nicely done, Rich!

Rich wrote:
While the offensive line created nice holes for the running backs, they also created nice holes for pass rushers. The interior line continues to be an issue in pass protection.


I remember reading that offensive linemen prefer to run block than to pass block, because they like that aggressive go-at-them mentality. Pass blocking is more difficult, and aside from Tunsil and James, they looked like turnstiles in the middle. I saw some get to Tannehill without even being chipped. There just appears to be confusion up the middle, and they had problems with some of NE's defensive stunts. Still, you got to hand it to them that at the end of the game they gave Tannehill time to get that pass to Stills who lateraled into history. I've seen our OL fold up big at the end of games in the past. Not yesterday.

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 10, 2018 12:47 pm 
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Great write up. Add to the bad Kenny Stills not trying to get the 1st down instead he gives himself up. He also dropped a 3rd down pass.


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 10, 2018 6:35 pm 
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Ted Larsen ran 40 yds + to get the key block on the last play of the game.


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 10, 2018 10:19 pm 
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bobby0112 wrote:
Ted Larsen ran 40 yds + to get the key block on the last play of the game.


He did what he was supposed to do. The team had nothing to lose and everything to win.

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 13, 2018 6:02 am 
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Got to add Kiko to the Good on this list. He was outstanding.

Joe Schad wrote:
Kiko Alonso was a monster against the run in this game. He was one of the main reasons Miami held New England to 77 rushing yards, and 2.6 yards per carry. Among the many plays that would be easy to overlook: it was Alonso who tackled Sony Michel of Plantation on a third-and-goal from Miami’s 6-yard line with about one minute to play. If Michel scores there, the game is over. Another excellent tackle by Alonso came against Rex Burkhead on a third-and-1. Alonso diagnosed the play, slid to his right just before the snap, burst through the hole and dropped Burkhead for a loss.


https://www.palmbeachpost.com/sports/20 ... t-patriots

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PostPosted: Sun Dec 16, 2018 7:09 am 
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Fitzpatrick didn't play his usual good against the Patriots (because most of his experience has been at S or nickel CB), so, on Monday morning he wanted to improve his game. I love this kid.


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