Tuesday, October 22, 2013
Miami Dolphins Stock Watch
By James Walker
The Miami Dolphins (3-3) are struggling and on a three-game losing streak.
Here is a look at whose stock is up and down in Miami.
1. Coaching staff: Coming off two weeks to rest and prepare for the Buffalo Bills, the Dolphins simply did not look ready to play. That falls squarely on head coach Joe Philbin and his staff. The Dolphins looked underprepared and fell behind quickly, 14-0, in the first quarter at home. At that point, Miami knew it was in for a tough game. Many of the Dolphins’ bye-week adjustments were hit and miss. For example, I’m not sure why the coaching staff felt taking the starting job away from Lamar Miller and giving him fewer carries was a good idea. Leaving right tackle Tyson Clabo one-on-one with Buffalo defensive end Mario Williams in the fourth quarter also was an oversight. The team also is rotating stud defensive players like Cameron Wake and Paul Soliai on defense too much and rendering them ineffective. Coaching hasn’t been a huge issue this season. But it was on Sunday.
2. Tyson Clabo, right tackle: Clabo’s stock has been falling for weeks. It plummeted even further after he allowed two more key sacks to Buffalo in the fourth quarter. Clabo’s second sack caused Dolphins quarterback Ryan Tannehill to fumble and set up Buffalo’s game-winning field goal. Clabo has now allowed a team-high eight sacks in six games. A lineup change should be forthcoming soon. The Dolphins traded for former Baltimore Ravens offensive tackle Bryant McKinnie on Monday.
3. Ryan Tannehill, quarterback: Tannehill did not respond well to the bye week. He was rusty early with two first-half interceptions that put the Dolphins in a tough spot. Tannehill’s first throw was a pick-six where he telegraphed a throw to the slot. His second was another bad read on a lob in the end zone. Tannehill eventually warmed up and threw three touchdowns after his early struggles. But the quarterback can’t have two interceptions and a lost fumble and expect to win.
1. Dolphins' running game: It wasn’t all bad for the Dolphins. Miami’s running game made solid strides against the Bills. The Dolphins rushed for a season-high 120 yards on 25 carries. Miller and Daniel Thomas combined for 103 yards rushing. Miami leaned more toward a power running game and plowed forward, as opposed to the sideline stretch plays that’s weren’t successful earlier in the season. The Dolphins need to adopt this running style the rest of the season.
2. Reshad Jones, safety: Jones got off to a slow start to the season, but he’s starting to come around and make impact plays. Jones led the Dolphins with 10 tackles and a sack Sunday against Buffalo. He also had a pick-six in Miami’s recent loss to the Baltimore Ravens. Jones signed a contract extension with Miami and needs to continue making big plays.
3. Brandon Gibson, wide receiver: Gibson is quietly having a solid season and led the Dolphins with two touchdown receptions. He caught five passes for 40 yards, but was a big red zone threat in this game. Gibson fought off a hip injury to make an impact.