Sep 16, 2012; Miami Gardens, FL, USA; Miami Dolphins playersJonathan Martin
(80) andJohn Jerry
(74) celebrate after a touchdown in the fourth quarter against the Oakland Raiders at Sun Life Stadium. The Dolphins defeated the Raiders 35-13. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee/Image of Sport-US PRESSWIRE
In case you haven’t seen the Miami Dolphins play much this year, I’ll let you in on a little secret–they’re not that bad. I know, weird, right? I had the Miami game circled on the calendar too. This will be an easy win for the Bengals! The Dolphins are awful!
Let’s recap some of Miami’s offseason highlights, shall we?
This was the team that spent a first round pick last April on a quarterback who set school records at Texas A&M in 2008…in RECEIVING yards. This was the team that had Chad Johnson boast that he was going to get arrested…and then follow through on that promise. This was the team that thought Chad Johnson was a good idea…period. (Ouch, it hurt to write that). This was the team that traded Vontae Davis because…well, I don’t really know why, but they did. Maybe the Colts sent Jeff Ireland some really swell magic beans or something.
The point is, the Dolphins were a national laughingstock heading into the season. While their 1-3 record doesn’t scream contender, there are several things Miami does do well that may give the Bengals problems on Sunday. For starters, the Dolphins’ are only giving up 56.8 yards per game on the ground, best in the NFL. They can also run the ball well themselves, as they rank fifth in the league in rushing yards, and that’s even with a banged up Reggie Bush.
It appears that Bush will play Sunday, though likely at less than full strength. The passing game is developing as well, as rookie quarterback Ryan Tannehill has shown some flashes. Wide receiver Brian Hartline had a monster game last week against Arizona, setting a team record with 253 yards. The Dolphins really had that game in hand against the undefeated Cardinals, but a couple of key turnovers late proved their undoing in a second straight overtime loss.
The Bengals are favored in this game, and they should be favored. Miami is rebuilding and sits at 1-3, but it is a dangerous club. If the Bengals are to come through unscathed they will need to continue their stellar play of the past three weeks.