Let’s not sugar coat this....The Patriots are the kings of the AFC East and they have been that for going on two decades. Come Sunday we start the season off in our house against them. Normally I would consider this bad luck since we are a young team and having to take on one of the most difficult teams right out of the gate is a tough task. However, over the years I have noticed something about the Patriots, they don’t’ win because they have superior talent. They win because they are very well prepared to execute a game plan. In fact they are infamous for the lengths they go to prepare for what a team is going to be trying to do. So I felt the need to put down what I think the Dolphins will need to do to beat the Patriots. Forget the old clichés teams state they need to do to beat a team. You all know the old blueprint: we need to run the ball, we need to win the turnover margin, and we need to pressure Brady. Of course we need to do those things to win. Except, I am sure you have all seen us do those things and still lose to the Patriots. So consider this article "my what needs to be done on top of win the fundamental aspects of the game".
1.) Be Proactive- When was the last time we out right beat the Patriots into the ground? I would have to say it was the year we introduced the Wildcat on them. This was nothing but a power run offense that teams figured out after a few weeks. However, the Patriots were not able to prepare for it. By the time we played them again they were ready and it was right back to the normal Patriot beat down for the Dolphins. I actually think Belichick is a little off balance coming into this game because he knows we are going to be running a new Bill Lazor offense that nobody has really seen unleashed. Belichick does not have his normal film study to prepare for the game (assuming he is not filming with a drone, only partially kidding!). If you do have success, keep it proactive, don’t wait to react when what your doing stops working. The Patriots are not the team to use the “if it is working keep doing it approach against”. Because THEY WILL figure out how to stop you. Don’t give them that chance. Run Tannehill, Pass to Moreno, Move Clay all over, Move Wallace all over, introduce them to trying to cover Landry and Gibson with a 3rd D-Back or safety, Move Hartline to both sides… you get the picture. Prepare multiple game plans and throw the works at them. Yes this will be harder to execute but having the Patriots off balance and unprepared makes it a more even game.
2.) Play 60 Minutes – If you have a 10 point lead going into the 4th. DO NOT go into a clock management conservative offense. Throw down the field and go after them. How many times have the Patriots beat teams that try to milk the clock to grind out a win. That is the time to send Wallace deep as they try to cheat a bit on D to get ball back. Give them the knock out punch if you get that chance.
3.) When the game is in the balance have fun! – In the past so many teams play scared. It is 3rd and 3 in a tie game with 4 minutes left and we are at mid field. If you turn it over on downs there is a good chance you lose. So many times we have folded under the pressure. FORGET ABOUT THAT CRAP. Pretty much all the media has picked the Dolphins to be horrible this year. We are an easy opening day win for the Patriots right? If we fail, we move on to the next game without missing much of a beat. I mean we were “supposed” to lose to them. It is the Patriots that are the ones that will be scared. If WE beat THEM, then all the questions start. Why did they trade off one of their best lineman, Is Tom Brady passed his prime etc. Just walk up to line and smile at them as you get ready to run the play it is a game, have fun as the underdog.
4.) Fans Show Up – As the game wears on in the heat it gets harder and harder to concentrate as dehydration and fatigue set in. That is time for us to do our part. Stand up and scream for all you have. You want to beat them? Add the fan noise to the heat to make playing in Miami literally like playing in hell.
There you have it my extras to think about if you want to beat the Patriots. Send me yours. I can’t say we WILL win this game. The Patriots are an excellent football team. But we sure as hell are not going to back down.