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A Wildcat wrinkle the Dolphins should consider

On Sept. 21, 2008 the Dolphins unveiled a newfangled offense that helped David defeat Goliath and has affected the thinking of NFL offenses and defenses ever since.

The Dolphins pulled back the curtain on Wildcat and -- six plays and four TDs later -- the surprise package helped Miami win for only the second time in 21 games while snapping New England's 21-game regular-season win streak.

Wildcat was a hit.

A year later, Wildcat is a core offensive look for the Dolphins and no surprise to anyone else. That means with the Dolphins game versus New England looming Sunday, this is the perfect game for the Dolphins to spring a new Wildcat surprise on the Patriots.

How about WildPat or WildPen?

As the Patriots are coming off a bye, they've had two weeks to prepare for the Dolphins and Wildcat. It behooves the Dolphins to use a new wrinkle in the attack to make that extra preparation time of no effect.

As the Patriots have studied that both New Orleans and the New York Jets shut down Miami's Wildcat the past two weeks with risky, but effective cornerback blitzes, and by crowding the line of scrimmage with up to nine defenders, the strategies beg the Dolphins to answer with an unexpected passing game out of Wildcat.

So here is what I propose:

The Dolphins should pass more out of Wildcat than the Patriots could ever expect. And doing it with Tyler Thigpen (my choice, just watch the video) or Pat White would be a great way to do accomplish that.

Understand this is not revealing any Dolphins secrets. Practices are closed and so I have no clue whether the Dolphins will actually put this possibility into action. But as loyal reader Jeff F. of Long Island, N.Y., saw and agreed, any right thinking football observer would say throwing the ball is the best way to make defenses pay for blitzing cornerbacks and trying to stop the run by outnumbering the offensive front.

The defenses the past two weeks begged the Dolphins to throw out of Wildcat. And the Dolphins tried to kinda, sorta respond, by attempting passes in both games.

The fact is the Dolphins seem to be warming to the idea of throwing out of the Wildcat as they've thrown four passes out of the formation the past three games.

But, let's face it, Ronnie Brown is a running back. He might be quite versatile and athletically gifted but there's a reason he's not playing QB. So the answer is to put a QB in there and burn the pants out of the disrespectful defense that blitzes Wildcat.

The answer, obvious to anyone with a brain, is to let Thigpen or White take over the Wildcat triggerman spot and heave-ho downfield.

Talk about a surprise. That would be a great wrinkle that New England is unlikely to be ready to defend against. And the beauty of the idea is that Thigpen or White would be throwing to Brown or Ricky Williams or Greg Camarillo, who are typically the most dependable Miami receivers.

On Thursday I asked coach Tony Sparano if all the blitzes against Wildcat didn't beg more passing as way to beat those blitzes.

Sparano paused for a couple of pregnant seconds after my question. And then he said, "maybe." 

At least it's not an outright, "No."

At least there is hope the Dolphins might spring the WildPat or WildPen on the Patriots. 


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First!!! yeah baby

No points for second place...

You think you are coming up with stuff that Dan Henning and Tony Sporano and Bill Parcelles dont see?

Are you going to take credit for suggesting this to them? I mean, it is why they drafted Pat White and all...

If the Dolphins don't try something different on Sunday then we need a new OC......pronto.

Rickybrown717 , you're perhaps the biggest FUCHEN LOSER that ever walked the planet earth. CONGRATS on your title.

Pat White is not ready to beat the Patriots at this point.I think they will struggle Sunday unless Ronnie Brown can throw it out of the Wildcat, pat White or Thigpen wont be a threat to run like he is.


WELL you dont want to ever tip your hand in the NFL but there is a new wrinkle in there. The Dolphins know what the Saints did and the knew that the Jets would probably bring down a corner to support the run and they did copying the Saints. But this is where you unviel the wrinkle. I think your on to something about White or Thigpen throwing the ball out spread or cat formation...but the Pats D is slower than those last two teams the dolphins have played and we may be able to hit the edge out of the wildcat. But we need to run the ball either way up the middle, left or right at the edge i dont care just run the ball. Get back to man on man blocking and run the ball and run some more right down the patsies throats. And when we pass play action pass and throw it deep earl and often make them honor Ginns speed or deep hook or curl routes by Camarillo.
Control the ball and the clock keep Brady on the pine.

Lol these comments are hilarious anyways yes something new would be great however i don't think it's so easy to just cook something up out of the blue I mean how creative can you possibly get.

You know what would be highly effective most likely is ronnie throwing to Ricky on a bootleg, what do you think?

Good column, but pretending that you are giving the team the idea of passing out of the wildcat based on your question makes you sound a little silly. I'm sure that they have thought about this themselves, and long before your question.

Passing with White would be great, since he has run the ball enough out of the formation to make a defense doubt that he would pass. The problem is that he is not as accurate a passer as he was advertised to be, so I'm not confident that he can get it done. I don't think the Trifecta is confident in him either.

Nice job Armando,now Belicheat will go and tell his defenders to look out for the pass lol.

Brown tried to throw twice outta the Wildcat and got sacked. Funny, I was thinking this afternoon whether or not Pat White would get more playing time. Heck, you can even do it with Henne standing next to Ronnie and flea-flick it. What we need is more consistency out of our base package, because it seems the line can't move anyone.

I hope the Fins have looked at the Jet game tape against the patsies, coz they were harrassing Brady all day.

You know something is brewing for the Dolphins on offense you just know there is going to be some wrinkle unvieled stay tuned.
New wrinkle or not I like the way Haynos is playing and would like to see more plays drawn up for him cause Fasano has had the dropsies.
I like the way Garner the extra tackle gets in there and mixes it up in the trenches.

God bless the men and women at Fort Hood who died and their families.

God bless the men and women at Fort Hood who died and their families.

Posted by: Dolphins4life | November 06, 2009 at 02:04 AM


Good night and God Bless the Dolphins and the men and women who dies at fort bragg.

Sorry typo: men and women who died at Fort Hood.

Good night Dolphins nation

NJ PHIN FAN is seriously the biggest douche bag I have ever seen on any message board in the history of the earth. I read Armando every single day, and usually scroll down to check a few comments. No, I don't comment, and don't write. Today I do. AND, I MUST insist that this douche bag is the worst Fin fan in North America, and I wish they'd just switch to being a Jets fans.

why have white take the snap? let brown be qb and put white in ricky's spot. have him motion across and brown can either run or hand it to white, white can run or throw. i've been saying this for a month now. they would have to respect the chance of a pass.

Ronnie needs to stay as the trigger man and PaT White needs to be the one they put in motion. That would cause a lot of problems as they could hand it off, hand it off an have White pass, or fake the hand off and have Ronnie do his THANGGG!

Thigpen would be much more of a threat than Pat White.
Pat looks way too timid running the Wildcat.

I think Thigpen's stats showed 6.2 yds. per rushing att. last year.
Add that along with his ability to pass the ball properly (no disrespect to Ronnie) and we might be able to get those "chunk" yards we've been missing.

The problem is Bellicheat had two weeks to game plan upside down and backwards any wrinkles the fins might throw at them in this package.

Dolphins still come out with the win !!! GO FINS !!!

JOE MOMMA or should i say RICKYBROWN717. . BOO_HOO ! WAH ! WAH ! , did i hurt your feelings ? POOR BABY ! It still stands the you're are the biggest FUCHEN LOSER on the planet earth . If you'e not rickybrown717 , then i stand corrected and give you the title of the BIGGEST FUCHEN loser . FIRST ! LMFAO

lets do it. its what we've all been waiting for, right?

Why not use Henne? He is the starter. Quit trying to change QB's

um i think ginn should run the deep route on the wildcat, he is the fastest guy on our team

So...your preference is to make White the emergency QB and activate Thigpen using him in RB's role in the WC?

I agree...but...

Not likely. Trifeta drafted White and Henne #2. This scenario would undermine both player's confidence and potentially call into question those decisions.

These wrinkles off of the wilcat sound totally ridiculous to me. Teams will adjust thier defense according to the wildcat personel they see on the field.

The best new wrinkle I see to employ is maybe Turner on 1st down short hitch routes and see if he can break a tackle to get into some 2nd and 5 or less. He's would be a big target for Henne and this may work more often than not.

Also just employ more base offense. The best time to employ the wildcat would be when we enter into field goal or redzone position. Thats when you might want to try very limited passing out of the cat.

Best wildcat wrinkle is to just be more selective on the situations in which you choose to use it. With a $155 million o-line they should be able to effectively run block out of traditional run formations too.

Lets put White in that jet motion that Ricky comes from. Motion him over and let White either throw over the blitzing corner or run into the open field, whichever is open. Or use the fake and let Ronnie run up the gut or to the left... that would stop that corner blitz. yes, I am a genius.

just run straight at them and do it in a hurry up offense from time to time.

what about lining up in the typical wildcat with Henne wide right. If you watch everytime the defense will guard him but as soon as the play starts they release him and go towards the runner. I say fake the run to the right and have Ronnie pull up and throw it out to Henne. If nothing else at least when it is 3rd and short to go.

Putting Pat White or Tyler Thigpen in the Wildcat formation makes it just a shotgun or pistol look. The wrinkle should be to bring the QB in motion from the WR spot, have Ronnie either hand it to him for a pass, or keep it and run. Now the defense has to decide - massive blitz and risk getting passed over the top, or fall back and risk getting Ronnie down your throat.


Why are you insulting other blogers for? Do you not have anything constructive to say about the Dolphins or this article. Did moma not buy you enough toys when you were little? Stay off the Dolphin blogs and get some manly help.
As to the article, Pat White needs to improve on his accuracy before they start trusting him to pass out of the wildcat.


Why are you insulting other blogers for? Do you not have anything constructive to say about the Dolphins or this article. Did moma not buy you enough toys when you were little? Stay off the Dolphin blogs and get some manly help.
As to the article, Pat White needs to improve on his accuracy before they start trusting him to pass out of the wildcat.

I hope they have been saving thigpen for this game. He has nice speed and a very nice arm. Would love to see him in the wildcat perfect fit fir him.

Mando, agree with your analysis except for White. Thigpen would be a much better choice.

Want to add one other thing. RB gets the ball most of the time out of the cat. And the enemies D is keying on him. The Dolphins have learned they have better sucess with Brown handling the ball but so has everone else.

Unfortunately, I cannot imagine they would throw Thigpen into the wildcat for his first action with the team. Maybe, he is their secret weapon, we will see. You know the Dolphins will surely add a new wrinkle for this game.




Pat White doesn't seem ready. There's only one player on the team that looks more scared and bewildered on the field than Ted Ginn.. and that's Pat White.

Tired of depending on the wildcat. Base offense needs to improve.

I have a feeling Pat White is going to play a larger role this week.. I remember the Patriots were looking at drafting him too, so Sparano might put that in their face some how.

Usually, you folks comment on what I write. Let me comment on the comments so far: Weak.

Igor, yes, I'm giving them a suggestion. Just like I suggested Ted Ginn return kickoffs, just like I suggest he return punts, just like years ago I suggested they start Yeremiah Bell. Doesn't mean they're going to do it. So what?

I think I clearly said I think Thigpen over White is the better option, so those saying White isn't ready are just repeating a thought already in the post.

No, Henne isn't going to be the Wildcat triggerman. You don't run your starting QB up into the line. Not very smart.

Finally, adding Patrick Turner to wildcat is not a wrinkle. All that does is change personnel with someone who hasn't been good enough to get on the field.

Step it up, people.

how about we try the WC and if it doesn't work we start running a normal, pro style offense? i feel like that's why Henne can't into a rhythm...in the first Jet game when he got hot when they took the training wheels off and let him get into a rhythm...and forget Pat White or Thipgen...as much as the WC seems to work at times, I feel like it destroys Henne's rhythm and how are you ever going to get a good look at him when he throws one play, then they run the WC for 3 plays, bring in white, run the WC for 2 more, Ginn drops a pass, then more WC...I'd like to see the WC as more of a secondary offense at this point...the last 3 weeks have proven that the WC can be stopped and maybe it's time to use the WC as a wrinkle and run a tradition football offense...I'll be at the game, hopefully I'll only have to deal with the smug, crap fans of NE at a bare minimum


Have you considered that Patrick Cobbs was essential for the wildcat to succeed? Add to that the fact that last year when the Fins were running the wildcat there were teams that blitzed with the CB's.. and guess what the Fins had set up?

A crack back block by the RB split out wide. The RB was Cobbs. No Cobbs no good blocker out there... wildcat hurt. Passing isn't necessarily the answer. Better blocking is definitely the answer. And Patrick Cobbs not being there is taking a huge toll on the blocking scheme.

mando u need 2 step it up we dont need to do anything out of the norm the pats beat the bucs and the titans n the snow and now there unbeatabul stay n our base o-fence and pound the rock our front seven clearly more phyical and throw the ball on first downplay actions.offencely were fine defence is where we need to scheme

How about a screen out of the WC? Or even a reverse?

I suggested last week at home that when ronnie hands off to ricky when he comes around, rick pitch the ball back to ronnie and he goes deep middle with a pass. has to be quick tho.

I like the idea..

Why not run a few more reverses with Ginn? Put the ball in his hands without him having to catch it... or even a soft screen pass would work!

Armando, Shush!

You have great insight (most of the time) and you're right on the money this time...but until we figure out how to password protect the blog...


Armando, I like your thinking. Although, with a quarterback taking the snap, it may cause the defense to be ready for this. Anyway, I had this dream of Ronnie taking the snap and faking a step to draw the corners up and Ronnie stops and hits Ginn, who is wide open and strolls into the end zone. This will definitely make the defense back out of the box the rest of the game, and it will be a big step in helping Ginn regain his confidence. Now, after having Brown completing the pass to Ginn, then send in White. This will definitely have Bellicek scratching his head. Leave White in for a whole series. On his first snap, have Ginn or Ricky do a reverse. Second snap he keeps it and runs up the middle. Third he throws a pass to Hartline. If they are going to use White or Thigpen, leave them in for a whole series. This taking one snap is serving no purpose.


I think Miami is setting up in the wildcat without a QB, when you set up with a QB then move him out wide, the D can not load up the line, thats one simple solution. I agree using Thigpen is a great idea and once you show it a few times they will have to respect it.

Ok, I got it. Line Pat White up as receiver so that Ricky takes the handoff from Ronnie and hand off to Pat White coming the other way from WR as Pat White reverse or maybe even a throw for triple trickery?

How about we just line up, smack them in the face and run the ball down their throat about 40-50 times this Sunday and win? I think that sounds like a good plan.

I think Sunday is a good time for Henne to be Hero again and hook up on the long ball with Miami's favorite new son, Tedward Ginn Jr.

Easier said than done. White and Thigpen don't have the running ability that Ricky and Ronnie do. So while having Ronnie as the triggerman limits your passing ability out of the wildcat, making White or Thigpen the trigger man of the wildcat will limit the running ability....so there wont be a need to crowd the line anymore.

Hey Armando,

The Fins should lineup in the Wildcat formation with Henne lined up at receiver with either a 3 WR 2 TE set or 4 WR 1 TE set. Henne then comes into motion to the backfield, and Grove direct snaps to either Henne or Ronnie, keep the defense guessing up to the snap of the ball, ala the Bills with Thurman Thomas. Feel free to pass that along to Henning.

I know this is a re-post but I like the idea :)


Did anyone see the Broncos/Patriots game this year? Former NE O-Cord McDaniels implemented the wildcat into their offense that week before the Patriots game and used for the first time for the Broncos with good success. Don't you think McDaniels knows something about the Pats in which they struggle stopping the Wildcat? Look for the Wildcat to shine this week....

SilenceDoGood - I like your thought process. If Ronnie and Ricky can get 20 carries a piece I have no doubt we will win the game!!

That's Ronnie's Gig. If its not broke then why try to fix it. Now I would line Pat at wide out in the wildhog.

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