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2015 Dolphins Draft Picks
Reshad Jones, Koa Misi, Jelani Jenkins - these three combined for 40 tackles, including 6 tackles for a loss. Reshad Jones had a good day in coverage, eventually picking off Geno Smith's last pass to seal the game. Jenkins and Misi also did a good job when called upon to blitz. These three players really stepped it up in the second half to shake the cobwebs on defense. Misi got a big sack on a blitz of Geno Smith and Jenkins had great coverage and deflected the pass that Jones eventually picked off. Most importantly, when the Dolphins FINALLY put Reshad Jones in the box, he destroyed several Jets running plays. He was the difference against the run today.
Lamar Miller - Underutilized all season long, Miller helped spark the comeback in the 2nd half with his quick, decisive running and the lone touchdown for the Dolphins.
Dion Sims - 4 catches on 4 targets for 58 yards, Sims has helped alleviate the absence of Charles Clay and is starting to develop into a nice pass catching tight end. He is also a terrific blocker, who helped keep Tannehill upright in pass protection, specifically on one play action pass where Sims ran from the left side of the line all the way to the right to block Calvin Pace, allowing Tannehill to hit Wallace for a 25 yard strike.
Jarvis Landry - He continues developing into a safety blanket for Tannehill. The rookie leads the team in receiving and caught 8 of his 11 targets.
Run Defense - The Broncos laid out the template and the Jets upgraded it, rushing for 277 yards by running right at the middle of the Dolphins defense. The past couple of weeks, teams have been pushing Randy Starks around. Once again, he was the lowest rated Dolphins defender according to PFF. He was also the lowest rated run defender. Starks had been having a solid season, but has really fallen off the last two weeks. Earl Mitchell didn't help the Dolphins cause, coming in rated as the 2nd worst defender and 2nd worst against the run. There is an issue here that is being exposed and the Dolphins need to fix it quickly.
Kevin Coyle - Again he runs a perplexing defensive scheme for most of the game. Here you are, facing one of the best running games in the league and one of the worst quarterbacks and receiving units in the league and the Dolphins come out with two deep safeties. I understand that you have a nobody starting at cornerback in R.J. Stanford, but you have Brent Grimes on the other side. Stack the box, cheat over to Standford's side and make Geno Smith beat you. It wasn't until the second half that Coyle adjusted and went to 8 men in the box by bringing up Reshad Jones. Is this guy so inept that he can't figure this out until the second half? Or maybe someone else had to figure it out for him? You have all week to analyze your opponent, there is nothing surprising about the Jets. You make Geno Smith beat you. This isn't rocket science.
Ryan Tannehill - 5 straight games completing over 70% of his passes, but that doesn't tell the whole story. This was Tannehill's worst game of the season. He should have had at least two more interceptions, but he was also one of the reasons the Dolphins came back to win it. In a way, it is actually encouraging that Tannehill can play an ugly game but still overcome struggles to win it. Some old habits crept back up as Tannehill started locking into his receivers and had shaky pocket presence. This is just evidence that pressure brings the worst out of quarterbacks. He did come out playing better and attacking downfield more in the second half.
Mike Wallace - Statistically, he had an OK game, but Mike Wallace has been clamoring for more big plays and when Tannehill finally hits him deep in stride, Wallace tries to one hand it and drops a sure touchdown. Talk the talk, Mike Wallace.
Offensive Line - I do admire this unit. They have been hit with significant injuries but they keep plugging along. Jawuan James had a good game, allowing no sacks or pressures, but in the first half, Tannehill was getting hit early and often. Things started looking bleak when Samson Satele went down, but Mike Pouncey slid right over to center and didn't miss a beat. The depth of this unit has been tested severely and while they haven't been terrific, they've been good enough to win.
This should be expected of a division rivalry game. The important thing is that the Dolphins won and are back in the driver's seat to make the playoffs. Tannehill didn't have his best game but the Dolphins were still able to win it. That's a great sign. Conversely, the run defense is a huge concern. You can be sure that Baltimore will be giving the Dolphins a heavy dose of Justin Forsett until the Dolphins prove they can stop the power running game. And with a real quarterback in Joe Flacco, and real wide receivers in Steve Smith and Torrey Smith, the Dolphins are not going to be able to just stack the box against the Ravens. Randy Starks and Earl Mitchell have to begin winning their match ups again. In fact, I'll go as far as saying those two players will decide the game for the Dolphins.
Get it together guys!