Monday, July 25, 2016

This Offense is Primed, and Ready to Explode!

Good Evening Phin Fans!


I don't believe that the team's defensive roster is set, just yet. The Offense, on the other hand, is locked and loaded with talent.

Tannehill will play behind the best starting Offensive Line he has had, since his arrival in Miami, and there is quality depth available to overcome the inevitable injury. They added #1 draft pick, and consensus #1 overall prospect in the 2016 Draft LT Laremy Tunsil, a 2 Time Pro-Bowl OT Jermon Bushrod, and C/G Kraig Urbik in Free Agency, to compete at Guard, and provide quality depth at Tackle. When he's had a healthy line, consisting of James, Pouncy, and Albert, regardless of the sub-par Guard play, he's completed passes at a 70% clip, and produced a 6-1 record, with the only loss coming at the hands of Green Bay and Aaron Rodgers, in a close, competitive game, won by the Packers in the last seconds.

The strides Devante Parker made to end last year, should bring a smile to the face of Dolphins fans everywhere. He has the speed to take it deep, the ability to take a short pass and turn it into a big play, the length to win the 50/50 balls, and has the route running and hands to be a possession guy underneath. He looked like the #1 receiver Miami has lacked since Brandon Marshall stopped by for a cup of coffee, and he's backed up by history making Pro-Bowler Jarvis Landry. All Landry's done since being drafted is catch more passes his first two years in the league than any other Wide Receiver in history.

The rest of the receiving core, is deep, talented, and full of potential, beginning with presumptive #3, Kenny Stills. He provides the speed to be a deep threat, stretching the field for Parker and Landry to work underneath, drawing the safety deep in support, or bringing down the big play when they decide to double Landry and Parker. All reports out of camp say he has improved his route running as well. The draft also yielded a receiver, Leonte Carroo, some have compared to Anquan Bolden, and a matchup nightmare and speed-demon in Jakeem Grant. This is a diverse, talented, and complimentary group of receivers that will be hard to defend.

A healthy, and solidified Offensive line doesn't just help Tannehill and his receivers. It will also provide running lanes for our recently upgraded group of Running Backs. In a move that had to be made, the Dolphins signed Arian Foster to compete for playing time against second year runner, Jay Ajayi, 3rd round pick Kenyon Drake, and several free agent signees. He provides the all around skillset expected and coveted by Adam Gase of his backs. I feel Ajayi will be given every opportunity to win the starting job in camp, but if Foster can prove he is fully recovered from last years injury, and demonstrate the undeniable ability he has shown in years past, Gase will have a hard time giving the job to anyone else. He runs with speed, power, and elusiveness, and he has great hands and route running ability out of the backfield, which he calls his greatest attribute. He is also a willing and professional blocker for his QB. Health history and future concerns aside, he bring a veteran presence and leadership to the RB position, they were lacking before he arrived.

At TE, the Dolphins have a couple proven options, with diverse yet complimentary talents. Jordan Cameron was misused and underutilized last year, and never seemed to be a legitimate option for Bill Lazor. Alternatively, the TE position is used to full advantage in Adam Gase's offense, and he will get the most out of this group. Jordan is a receiving TE with great size, speed, hands, and good route running ability. Dion Sims is a fantastic in-line blocker, with under-rated receiving ability. He lacks the speed to be a seam threat, but has all the ability to be a spot possession and situational red-zone threat.

Tannehill got a head start in the off-season, going over game-tape of Gase's offense, and working out with his receivers before mini-camp ever started.... demonstrating the kind of leadership he's been criticized for not showing in the past. The Offensive Line was a priority this off-season, and Miami  added talent and depth to a healthy Albert, Pouncy, and James. Parker enters Training Camp healthy, and primed for his new role as Miami's #1 receiver, and has a Pro-Bowler in Landry, and a hungry Kenny Stills, in a contract year, right there to take the pressure off. They added Foster, a 2 time Pro-Bowler and former NFL Rushing Champion to a group of running backs offering speed, power, receiving, and playmaking ability. There is youth, but loads of potential, but Foster offers them all a chance to grow, develop, and succeed.

No.. It won't happen overnight, but that's what Training Camp is for. Gase came to Miami at a time when the offense only needed a couple of pieces to make it very dangerous. They've done that since his arrival, and now it's time for him to unleash his offense, and this group of talent, loose on the league!

FINS UP!


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9 comments

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Gotta see it first. Last year just sucked the life out of me. No more Sunday ticket either.

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I can definitely understand your cynicism Ken, but I look at all of the problems our offense had last year, none more blaring than our Offensive Line, and see a huge difference. There will no longer be a need to shuffle the offensive line if/when and injury occurs. We take a proven, veteran back-up, slide him into place, and the rest of the line maintains their original positions. I don't see any Jason Foxs in key reserve roles. The only exception would be, possibly, Left Tackle, in which I could easily see sliding Tunsil over if he wins the starting Guard spot. Then you take Turner or Urbik, whichever doesn't win the starting RG job, and slide him into that spot. The rest of the offense is set and improved. We have Gase calling the plays and tailoring the offense to what the players do best. I'll watch every game, and look forward to seeing the offensive evolution first hand!

Don't give up hope quite yet Ken.. I see the light!

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A little too early to tell much of anything. Still no pads. People who attended mini camp etc. say TE's do not look good right now and left guard is still not fixed. Defense has a lot of question marks. Just hope the coaches can use the players right. That alone could lift this team to 9 wins. To me 9 wins would be a successful season even without playoffs.

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@ Tobey Britto comment. Not sure how you can see a big difference in the Oline especially wthout pads. People who attended the minicamps are saying the Oline still looked really bad mostly because bad te hnique was on display. The only real difference is we have better depth in case of injuries but so far the players have not shown to be gelling as a unit in anyway. Hopefully the new blocking scheme will help them. Not sure what the new scheme is...just know that Pouncy says it is NOT zone blocking. I'm not saying not to have hope but don't buy the hype either. Let's start by seeing some evidence of improvement in training camp.

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Hey David... The TE position is the least of my concerns. We have viable options there for both the Passing and Rushing game. That will work itself out. As far as the LG spot, Mini camp was more of a time for experimentation and evaluation by Gase. He wanted to see where his line was, how position-flexible they each are, and their attitudes towards being moved around. I think it's pretty easy to see the direction they're moving in, and I really like the options they've given themselves, short and long term. Tunsil was a lucky hit, and really solidifies the LT spot for the next ten years barring injury or immaturity. Training camp will definitely answer the questions at LG. Either Tunsil wins it, or you make him your Back-up at LT, which will give him some time to develop, and take Bushrod or Urbik, and slide them into that LG slot. My call is Tunsil Wins the job, plays out the year at LG, and takes over at LT next year. I agree with your observation that Gase can get us to 9 wins simply by using the talent on our roster correctl, and I believe he will, and then some!

Phins Up David!

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Good post Tobey. We could be good. I hope so. Not sure about Foster's recovery and abilty to to the workhorse he once was. He has a lot of miles on those tires. Ajayi looked good in flashes last year but his hands are still questionable. So RB is a big question mark.

I like Carroo very much. He had an average QB, at best, throwing him the ball and put up very good numbers. Carroo will impress many who are unfamiliar with him. Trust me. He is the real deal.
The OL will be improved and if they stay healthy, Tannehill will have a big year. That's the most important factor with us or any other team. If the studs are on the field, you can succeed. That OL could be special.
Another factor is the coaching. I like Gase quite a bit. I may be cursing him out later but right now, I like everything he brings to the table. He can relate to the players which I feel is very important.
Finally, the way the draft played out, you have to give some props to Chris Grier. Not only picking up Maxwell and Alonso but having Tunsil fall into our laps was amazing. Getting Foster cheap could be an unexpected coup. Carroo will be a gem. The other offensive draft picks are for special teams.
So as far as the offensive side, stay healthy on the line and if Foster can play again, even at 85%, we will be vastly improved.
You may be on to something Tobey. But it's a long, long way to Tipperary.

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This is the time of year for hope and optimism but I must say that I disagree with a few of your statements.

1) "Parker enters training camp healthy"-Not a true statement, he is nursing another foot injury and was held out most if mini camp because of this.

2) "recently upgraded group of backs"-I don't feel that a rookie in Drake, a 2nd yr back who barely got playing time last year in Ajayi, who also came off an injury, and Mr. Glass in Arian Foster is an upgrade over Lamar Miller who nearly rushed for 1000 yards after averaging only 14 touches per game. Not an upgrade IMO

No Sunday Ticket for me this year either. They have to get 9 wins before I invest in that crap again...

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Thanks Carl. I'm not sure the signing of Foster was to acquire a workhorse. I think it was for the veteran leadership he can provide, while giving Ajayi an opportunity to develop under him, or beside him for a year, sharing the load... Teach him AND Drake how to be professionals. I agree, RB is a big question mark, but Gase will see all he needs to in the coming months, and throughout the season to determine if a new direction is needed. There's no where to go but up for this coaching staff. He has already shown me he is everything Philbin and Lazor were not. His players already love him, they trust him, and you can tell they want to play for him. The first round will turn out to be a team changing move. Two starters on Defense, one being a possible superstar at the most important position on the defense, and Tunsil, a starter at LT for the next 10 years? WOW
Yes, they have to prove it on the field, but I see great things in our very near future!

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Hey Lawrence! They were just being overly cautious with Parker. They wanted to make sure he would go into Training Camp fully healthy, without any setbacks. We'll see for sure in a few days, but it looks like mission accomplished right now. And When I said "upgraded", I was speaking more of our situation before he signed, after losing Miller. I would have loved to see Miami re-sign Miller. I like him a lot, but I also believe Drake is Miller 2.0, with equal speed and running ability, but with better route running and hands. He will need time to develop, but that's what Foster is there for. Provide leadership, and take the pressure off of the young backs while they develop. It is tryly a time for optimism, but I don't think mine is misplaced!
Thanks for the feedback Lawrence!