And that leads me to the simple conclusion that while it was a nice win by the Dolphins - and a much needed one - it really wasn't much of a statement. The Raiders mostly beat themselves. Gradkowski was horrible at QB, and the team struggled rather a lot. They couldn't get a stop on Miami, ever. And they couldn't move the ball themselves.
In a way that troubles me. Because now I'm going to hear a lot about how Chad Henne has "come around" and is the fins future. And how Sparano managed the game well. The second is a mostly true statement. But the first, not so much. Yes, Henne had a good day statistically, but he still locked in on every receiver. And his lack of mobility shoulda/coulda/woulda been a liability against a good team.
The commitment to the running game was huge, and was the difference in this game. Finally, we saw the Dolphins really trying to make something happen on the ground. And over on defense, we saw some pretty good play and some nice combinations of players that (a) gave everyone a little breather and (b) confused Gradkowski at times.
Special teams were uneven again. When Ford took the opening kickoff to the house, I assumed it was over, and was going to be a long afternoon. But the Fins responded well, and kept him in check the rest of the day. Bess had a very nice return that nearly went the distance. And yet there was a punt nearly blocked, and a couple of missed field goals.
So, I'll take it, and we'll see where the Fins go from here.