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Running game isn't even average on per carry rate

Dolphins offensive coordinator Dan Henning admits the Dolphins rushing attack does not exactly resemble the barbarian hordes running roughshod through the defenses of the Roman Empire back in ancient times. (The Romans, you see, had injuries to their linebacker corps and didn't protect the bridges or northern frontier very well.)

"We're not happy with the way the running game is going right now," Henning said today during his 10-minute weekly window for speaking with the media. 

That is actually more of an admission than coach Tony Sparano was willing to offer Wednesday. The Dolphins are averaging only 3.8 yards per carry this year and Sparano was asked if that is efficient or good enough.

“It’s not satisfactory but an efficient play, okay in this league is what?" Sparano said, uncharacteristically challenging the reporter (not me). "You tell me; give me the number. You guys make them up.”

Ouch.

Actually, the media doesn't make up that number. The league average gain per rushing play is 4.2 yards per carry. So the reporter told coach Sparano a good rushing play, an efficient play gains 4.6 yards.

“No, that’s not an efficient play, 4.6," Sparano insisted. "That was our average, 4.6. That’s not an efficient play. You tell me."

The reporter lowered the bar and said 4.0 yards per carry, even though average -- just average -- is 4.2 yards per carry leaguewide. 

“Four yards, we’re at 3.8," Sparano said with a shrug that seemed meant to bridge the gap between 4.0 and 3.8.

Neither one is good enough. Neither one is even good enough to be average.

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