I decided to re-watch the game, because I wanted to understand what went wrong (and right!) with the Fins on Sunday night.
For starters, I have to agree that coaching played a rather large role in the game. At times, Sparano seemed to be, I dunno, "afraid" of making a mistake or doing something that would mess up the balance of the game. And, as we saw in several games last year, he had the team unprepared for the *start* of the game. While they played well down the stretch, allowing 7 points very early and 14 points before actually doing anything themselves was kind of silly at the pro level.
Then there were the coordinators. I'm not entirely sure what the deal was on offense at times. With 8:56 left, Miami got the ball back at midfield, trailing 24-20. The plays went incomplete pass, pass for 14, a wildcat play that lost 6, incomplete pass, pass for 10, and then at the 32 Miami kicked the field goal. 2 minutes went off the clock, and Miami didn't really run, and it almost seemed like they were in hurry up mode. And that particular wildcat play was a waste - the handoff to Cobbs was sloppy and the blocking was bad.
This was a point at which they need a TD.
Then consider the last series where Miami needed 8. They had a first at 10 at the 11. 2 timeouts remaining, 56 seconds on the clock. The 4 downs went: incomplete pass (short of the endzone), scramble for 1 yard, a pass to Brown in the flat that gained 5, and then it was a pass that Henne tried to force into Fasano at the goal line.
What we needed here was either a running play to move the defense - we had two stinking timeouts!. Or passes into the endzone. We got neither. Some creativity would have been nice, as well.
Defensively, we didn't see as much formation variation or blitzing as we had seen in weeks past. What we did see were some unusual alignments - like the safeties deep or shallow which I presume was intended to confuse Sanchez, but didn't. Yes, the Jets have a lot of talent on offense, but I think Nolan didn't attack the weakest point in Sanchez.
And then there was not-so-special teams. Obviously the blocked punt was a mess. But there were a fair number of missed assignments around the field, and the aggressiveness wasn't there. Bonemago was outcoached by Westhoff - which was not the case last season.
Now as for the players, the wanker of the week belongs to Yeremiah Bell. There were the two plays I mentioned as the game was in progress. But there was also the Edwards TD - Bell was the deep safety to that side in what looked like a two-deep zone. Only, when the play started, Bell was too deep AND he committed to the other side along with Clemons. So, when Jason Allen fell down, he had no help. What was up with that?
This, frankly, is the effort I expected after seeing them play in the preseason. But I thought after seeing their first two games they had cleared up most of this and were better prepared. They weren't.
And its no wonder they lost.