Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Can't Take It Anymore!!!!!!........

OK! I CANT TAKE IT ANYMORE! I HAVE BEEN CONTENT WITH NOT GETTING OVERLY EXCITED ABOUT THIS TEAM THIS SEASON ONLY TO BE LET DOWN YET AGAIN WITH A BELOW AVERAGE RECORD WITH ABOVE AVERAGE TALENT! THE DAMN FANTASY FOOTBALL BUG HAS BITTEN ME AND WITH THAT COMES A LOT OF READING INTO THE NFL, DOLPHINS INCLUDED AND I HAVE TO SAY I AM PRETTY EXCITED ABOUT THIS YEAR'S DOLPHINS SQUAD....!!! DION JORDAN. OK SO HE WAS HURT COMING OUT OF COLLEGE. HE WAS NOT A PICK WE NECESSARILY NEEDED. HE GAINED 20 POUNDS OF MUSCLE IN THE OFFSEASON. ALL THESE THINGS ARE TRUE AND SO IS THIS STATEMENT: WHILE WATCHING ALL THE DOLPHINS GAMES LAST YEAR, JORDAN WAS USED SPARINGLY BECAUSE OF HIS INJURY, BUT WHEN HE WAS IN THE GAME, HE WAS INVOLVED IN MAKING THE PLAY ALMOST EVERY TIME! WHETHER IT WAS THE TACKLE, SACK, OR IF HE HURRIED THE QB INTO A BAD THROW. MY PREDICTION IS HE WILL HAVE AT LEAT 8 SACKS THIS YEAR AND BE THAT GUY THAT CONSTANTLY HELPS OUR DEFENSE GET OFF THE FIELD ON 3RD DOWN... LAZOR'S OFFENSE. NOBODY REALLY KNOWS MUCH ABOUT IT OTHER THAN "ITS FAST" BUT REMEMBER PHILBIN'S FIRST YEAR AS COACH, HE RAN TWO TEAMS AT THE SAME TIME AND ALSO PRACTICED FAST SO I PERSONALLY BELIEVE THAT IS IRREVELANT BUUUUUUUTTTTTTTT ON THE OTHER HAND THERE ARE REPORTS THAT MIKE WALLACE IS CONSTANTLY BEING MOVED AROUND TO CREATE MIS-MATCHES, THE DEFENSE CANT KEEP UP WITH THE OFFENSE AND EVERYONE IS REALLY ENJOYING THE NEW SCHEME. THERE WAS A PRACTICE A WEEK AGO WHERE IT WAS REPORTED THAT BRENT GRIMES GOT SCORED ON 4 TIMES, JUST THINK ABOUT THAT FOR A MINUTE, 4 TIMES ON OUR SHUTDOWN CORNER!! DOES THAT MEAN BRENT GRIMES IS LOSING A STEP? MAYBE BUT I DOUBT IT. AND LASTLY ABOUT THE OFFENSE, ISNT OUR PERSONNEL ODDLY SIMILAR TO WHAT THE EAGLES HAS LAST YEAR? JACKSON/WALLACE, COOPER/HARTLINE, ERTZ/CLAY, McCOY/MILLER?? THE RUNNING BACK SITUATION IS OBVIOUSLY A HUGE DIFFERENCE BUT I WOULD TAKE OUR RECIEVERS OVER PHILLY'S ANY DAY OF THE WEEK ON TWICE ON SUNDAY.... TANNEHILL. WHAT CAN I SAY??! HE THREW FOR OVER 4000 YARDS I BELIEVE LAST YEAR WITH A HORRIBLY PREDICTABLE OFFENSE AND SNAP COUNT WHICH I BELIEVE WAS ONE OF THE REASONS WE GAVE UP 58 SACKS. HE IS PRETTY DARN EFFECIENT IN THE RED ZONE. I HONESTLY DONT THINK HE CAN BE JUDGED QUITE YET. HIS ROOKIE CAMPAIGN WAS A WASH BECAUSE WELL, HE WAS A ROOKIE. NOT ALL QB'S CAN BE AN ANDREW LUCK. LAST YEAR HE DID PRETTY GOOD ALL THINGS CONSIDERED LIKE WHAT WAS MENTIONED ABOVE. THIS YEAR HE IS BEING TAKEN OUT OF HIS COMFORT ZONE, BEING TOLD TO LET LOOSE A LITTLE BIT. HIS SECURITY BLANKIE, (AHEM, SHERMAN) HAS BEEN TAKEN AWAY AND THAT JUST MIGHT BE WHAT IT TAKES TO PUSH HIM OVER THE TOP.... FINALLY THE DRAFT & FREE AGENTS. I BELIEVE WE DID PRETTY GOOD. NO HUGE NAME DRAFTEE OR FREE AGENTS BUT IF LOUIS DELMAS CAN STAY HEALTHY, CORTLAND FINNEGAN CAN BE HALF THE CORNER HE ONCE WAS AND OUR OFFENSIVE LINE CAN HOLD UP SOMEWHAT WELL I BELIEVE WE WILL BE A 10 WIN TEAM THIS YEAR AND POSSIBLY BE PLAYING THE PATRIOTS IN THE LATTER PART OF THE SEASON FOR THE AFC EAST TITLE. THIS ALL HINGES ON THE HEALTH OF THE FREE AGENT ADDITIONS AND HOW WELL OUR LINE HOLDS UP. JUST THINK ABOUT IT, BRENT GRIMES AND CORTLAND FINNEGAN AS OUR STARTING CORNERS, IF HE CAN BE THE FINNEGAN OF ABOUT 3 YEARS AGO WE JUST MIGHT HAVE A TOP 3 CORNER DUO IN THE NFL IN MY OPINION... AND FOR THOSE REASONS ALONE I HAVE TO ADMIT THAT I AM EXCITED FOR THIS TEAM THIS YEAR!!!!! AS HARD AS I TRIED I COULDNT RESIST ANYMORE!!!...

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Dolphins Catch Breaks With Schedule

When 25% of your games are going to be played against future Hall of Fame quarterbacks, catching any kind of break, no matter how small, is huge.

This season we have two games on the road and two games at home against 3 guys heading to Canton.

On September 7th, we open the season hosting Tom Brady and the Patriots and on October 12th we host Aaron Rodgers and the Packers.

Then on November 23rd we travel up to Denver to face Peyton Manning and the Broncos and on December 14th we head up to Foxboro to face Tom Brady and the Patriots for our second division game against him.

Now two on the road and two at home doesn't seem like a break unless you consider that we could have gone to Green Bay instead of to Detroit and Chicago in our games against the NFC North.

So catching Rodgers at home, where we play the Packers very tough considering our 6-1 record against them in Miami is a break.  We have the all time edge vs. the Packers at 10-3. 

And in Rodgers only game against Miami on October 17, 2010, we came away with a 23-20 OT victory at Lambeau Field. 

Rodgers was 18 of 33 for 313 yards with one TD against one Interception with a QB Rating of 84.3.

So Rodgers is 0-1 against the Dolphins. How about that!

Peyton Manning hasn't faired that well against us either. He has a career record against us of 5-7 and hasn't put up Hall of Fame numbers.

In those games he has completed 244 passes in 404 attempts for 2957 yards with 18 TDs against 18 Interceptions. His QB Rating in those games comes to only a pedestrian 60.5.

Fear not Dolfans.

Now Brady, on the other hand, is 17-7 vs the Dolphins.  In those games he has thrown for 5306 yards with 42 TDs against 20 Interceptions and is just over 90 with his QB Rating.

He has had 3 of his worst games in his career against us:
On October 7, 2001, he passed for only 86 yards on 12 completions in 24 attempts.
On October 10, 2004, he passed for only 76 yards on 7 completions in 19 attempts and still won.
On December 10, 2006, he passed for only 78 yards on 12 completions in 25 attempts. 

But he has owned us too. He has carved us up.

When I first looked at the schedule something jumped right out at me along with facing these 3 Hall of Fame QBs.

In 3 of these 4 games against them we catch a HUGE BREAK!

Before each of the first 3 games we face them, we get extended time to prepare for them.

Coyle will need it.

Game 1: We open the season against the Pats and Brady at home and as we all know both teams will get a week off heading into the game as, generally, no starters will play in the last preseason game.  That gives our defense 14 days to rest and prepare.

Game 2: On October 12th, we face the Packers and Rodgers at home immediately after our BYE week.  That gives our defense 14 days to rest and prepare. 

Granted that the Packers play on Thursday Night the previous week so our rest advantage won't be as great but they do host the Vikings in what will be a very physical game.

Game 3: On November 23rd, we face the Broncos and Manning in Denver after we host the Bills on Thursday November 13th.  That gives our defense 10 days to rest and prepare.

Leading into those three games we pick up an additional 17 days of rest and preparation than we would have had during a normal week.  That's an 80% increase.  

In a quarterback driven league, having 17 additional days to prepare for 3 Hall of Fame QBs is a HUGE BREAK!

The fourth game on December 14th at NE follows a normal week and it also ends what I see as a very tough 6 game stretch.  At Detroit, short week hosting Bills, at Denver, at Jets MNF, short week hosting Ravens and then finish the 6 game stretch at NE. 

4 games out of those 6 are on the road. This stretch will determine our success.

At the very least, the league did give us a leg up against Brady, Rodgers and Manning.

For that I am thankful and hopeful.

Phins Up!!!

Carl Leone
Dolfan since 12/25/1971
Carldleone@aol.com

Monday, June 09, 2014

NFL Network to Showcase Miami Dolphins on Tuesday June 10th

The NFL Network, as part of their Decades Month and as this week they are honoring the top teams from the 1970's, will be featuring the Miami Dolphins with 8 straight hours of highlight shows on Tuesday June 10th.

Their coverage begins at 2 PM with a 2 1/2 hour rebroadcast of Super Bowl VII in which the Miami Dolphins bested the Washington Redskins to finish the 1972 season as the only Perfect Team in NFL history at 17-0.  If you haven't had an opportunity to actually watch that game, now is your chance to see it play by play from the Los Angeles Memorial Stadium on January 14, 1973.

This will be a special treat to hear NBC's Curt Gowdy and Al DeRogatis call the game.  I am sure it will bring back some fond memories for those of us old enough to have seen the live broadcast way back when.

Directly following at 4:30, the NFL Network will rebroadcast a half hour highlight show of Super Bowl VII.  This was originally produced by NFL Films.

From 5-6 PM, the NFL Network will be re-airing "Don Shula: A Football Life".  This one hour special will highlight the football career of Don Shula.  Surprisingly, they actually get it all in in just one hour.  This is a must see for all generations of Dolfans.

From 6-7 PM, the NFL Network will be re-airing their show "America's Game: Super Bowl VII" which highlights the 1972 Miami Dolphins Championship Season.  With commentary from Don Shula, Manny Fernandez and Larry Csonka, you will get an insider's view of the NFL Network's #1 Ranked All Time Super Bowl Winning Team.  Plus, Fernandez and Csonka share some funny stories.

From 7-8 PM, the NFL Network will be re-airing their show "America's Game: Super Bowl VIII" which highlights the 1973 Miami Dolphins Championship Season which capped off a 15-2 record with a victory over the Minnesota Vikings.   In this segment, Bob Kuechenburg, Mercury Morris and Dick Anderson bring their perspective of that season right into your living room.  This is a well produced series by the NFL Network.

Finally from 9-10 PM, if you haven't had enough of our proud past, you can watch "Don Shula; A Football Life" again.  After all, who can actually get their fill of the Miami Dolphins' legendary head coach.       

Personally, I am looking forward to the rebroadcast of Super Bowl VII.  My DVR is already set.  This was a game with a few crazy plays in it.  Of course, I won't spoil it for you so set your DVRs tonight.

Phins Up!!!

Carl Leone
Dolfan since 12/25/1971
Carldleone@aol.com