Injuries Keep Mounting
I shall not be at another regular season game at Third and Long as I am flying home to London for the holidays. So barring a Christmas miracle of a Miami post season chances are I won’t get to catch up with many of you until the draft. So here’s to hoping.
Since the Dolphins beat the Jags last week I have seen a number of articles and posts relating to the fact that the Dolphins are still alive in the playoff race here. Still alive yes, but with a very weak pulse and on life support, about ready to flat line as early as this Sunday. Week 15 produced the perfect scenario to keep us in it, all the teams that we needed to lose did just that and we won. Thing is when the playoff spot that you can theoretically get hangs in the balance of so many external factors, although it is an exciting prospect i grant you, the only thing the Dolphins can do is continue to win and let the chips fall where they will. Because without victories against the Bills this Sunday and the patriots the following Sunday it really doesn’t matter what else happens.
We are going to be playing for some pride here as well as playing to stay in the playoff picture. When we last met up the Dolphins turned in one of their worst performances this season. Winning this game to atone for that should be motivation enough and the fact that this is the last home game of the season should only add to the importance of doing. Come on Phins fans of Florida, do not let our boys down, be sure to be there and show your support.
The Bills, despite a roster loaded with talent, have had a disappointing season. But there have been the games where they have been terrific, mainly because of running back CJ Spiller. The rest of their talent lies mostly in their defense.
So if our quality run D turns up and does the job we know they are capable of doing in shutting down Spiller we can force a very average QB in Fitzpatick to try and pass the ball more to his very average receiving corps. Though with our secondary as it is this actually doesn’t give me as much confidence as it ought to. But really once again, with Hartline and Bess likely at less than 100%, the loss of Clay and Thomas, our D will have to keep the offense alive.
But hey, like I said a few weeks ago, with a huge off season for the Dolphins coming up getting a better look at some of the younger guys on the roster can only be a good thing. The circumstances as they are now will force Philbins hand and allow some of these guys a real chance to get out there and showcase what they can do in a real and meaningful game.
As of this point right now, its a win win situation for the Dolphins. The playoffs although still a possibility albeit a very slim one, so these guys are still playing for January. On the other hand with such a big off season coming missing out on the playoffs means a greater chance for Philbin to build his squad through the draft. We have won more games than i thought we would and with the exception of the first Bills game and the Titans game we have played with heart. Provided we build on what we have accomplished this season then the future is genuinely looking pretty bright at this point. Remember a number of those losses (Cardinals, Jets, Colts) were by field goals, they were heartbreaking losses but the point is that this is a team on the cusp of being a contender. If Tannehill can throw so more TD’s we could really close out those sort of games in the third quarter. Its all very well and good pinning those losses on Dan Carpenter but truth be told thanks to our turnover differential and the lack of red zone efficiency we have given those games away as a team.
I will be doing my best to catch this game from London, may have to resort to streaming it online. Oh well. For the rest of you, whether you are back home with family and friends, or amongst friends at Third and long, have a very happy Christmas!