...http://blogs.sun-sentinel.com/sports_fo ... l+Blogs%29
The defense got off the field on third downs (Oakland converted 2-of-9), and that’s with Karlos Dansby playing a limited role because of his left wrist injury. Dansby entering the game only in the nickel and dime package (usually on third downs). His replacement, Tim Dobbins led the team with six tackles in his 20 or so plays, which made him highly efficient per snap.
The starting safeties – Yeremiah Bell (interception and fumble recovery) and Chris Clemons (interception) - produced three turnovers. Would have been four if Clemons had pulled down that deep ball Jacoby Ford stole from his hands.
While I admire Richie Incognito’s hustle, it’s obvious that the Dolphins’ starting left guard takes forever on his pulls to the right. As a result, he’s usually creating a traffic jam instead of making a second-level block. It’s not my place, but I’m certain Incognito would be better served playing right guard or center (Dolphins clearly need an upgrade) in the near future. But considering Incognito only signed a one-year deal this nomadic offensive lineman might be moving on after this season….
Sticking with the offensive line, left tackle Jake Long is playing mostly on toughness and guts. Some of his pass blocks were extremely unorthodox because of his injured left shoulder, but it got the job done.
Right tackle Vernon Carey opened the hole on Williams’ 45-yard touchdown run, but he had a hot and cold day on the field.
Carey’s clearly playing in pain because of his troublesome knee issue, but it would probably help if he dropped 20 or 30 pounds….
Rookie right guard John Jerry allowed the game’s third sack because of poor footwork. Jerry, the team’s third-round pick, had one very good pull during the game, but the rest of his performance was lackluster. I’m starting to wonder if the coaching staff is seeing the progress they hoped would come with a continued investment in the rookie. He’s a decent pass blocker, but is lacking when it comes to the run game…..
Speaking of the run game, I consistently wonder why the Dolphins don’t do more delayed hand offs and draws out of the shotgun? Then I noticed that Tyler Thigpen’s package featured it. I know Henne doesn’t like the shutgun, but that doesn’t mean he shouldn’t be used in it. This kind of rigid approach handcuffs the offense….
Clap it up for Lex Hilliard, who not only contributed a handful of impressive blocks as a fullback, but he provided the bone jarring block that opened up the crease that allowed Davone Bess to reserve field on his 47-yard punt return. I’ve long been critical of Lousaka Polite’s lead blocking, and I wonder if Hilliard might be an upgrade…..
Some people want to call Channing Crowder out for not recording a tackle against the Raiders, but keep in mind it was Crowder who aligned the entire defense properly in his 20-something plays, orchestrating a performance that held Oakland to 17-yards rushing. On plenty of plays Crowder took the fullback head-on (doing his responsibility) which allowed Dobbins or Bell to come up and make the stop. Give respect where it’s due folks. Crowder didn’t make any tackle, but don’t act like he missed any either….
Cornerback Sean Smith has been steady in coverage since regaining his starting spot, but Smith must learn to form tackle better,