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Miami Dolphins tied for AFC East lead

Are you ready for this? The Dolphins are tied for first place in the AFC East.

And it's mid-October!

With the Patriots losing to Seattle on Sunday, the Jets beating Indianapolis, and the Bills beating Arizona in overtime, those teams join Miami with a 3-3 record. All are tied atop the AFC East. So the first six weeks of the season has resolved nothing in the division.

It's irrelevant. What matters is that Miami finds itself mattering at this time of year. Still.

My opinion?

As I wrote in my column in The Miami Herald for Monday, the Dolphins have greatly improved since the season began. There are tangible signs that players and units are getting better. I also write the new coaching staff is also improving and there were signs of that Sunday.

Bottom line is the team is headed in the right direction so far.

I believe only one team is going to come out of the AFC East and make the playoffs this year. But at this stage, the Dolphins have as good a chance as any of the others.

Comments

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uhhhh Aloco.... P Manning half of fame QB with 10+ years experience. THill Rookie that started 6 games so far and 19 (?) in college...

really going to compare?

Oh and if you want to cry, take out the Houston game then look his stats up...

Luck and RGIII keep throwing INTs.

Tannehill has learned not to turn the ball over.

We got the best QB in the draft.

#WINNING.

And we should be 5-1.

@RBs... I agree about the RG3 trade, great player but they gave up a lot to get him. You forgot Minn trading for Walker setting up the Cowboys dynasty. Though I don't see good ole .500 Fisher getting a team anywhere near that good.

Glad to see the D making plays at the end of the game. And anyone mention Vernon? 2 huge sacks, guy will be a good compliment to Wake and more proof that Ireland drafts good...

"WHRBs...
there 3-3...."

Kris,

You're correct. The Redskins are 3-3 & not 2-3.

The point I was making is that they are NOT a complete football team. They're a good offensive team & they can DEFINITELY run the football BUT they allow WAY many points. Right now they're allowing 28.8 per game & that's just not going to get it done in the NFL.

Not having a first round pick in 2013 & 2014 is something that most teams can not afford.

my my my my my look at YG flipflop. at the beginning of the year he was on the we are awful bandwagon and now hes on the tannethrill bandwagon LOL a typical frontrunner

he is....a MINDLESS DRIVLE MONSTER!! AHHHHH!

Fins 31
Jets 6


#WINNING

@RBs... I agree about the RG3 trade, great player but they gave up a lot to get him. You forgot Minn trading for Walker setting up the Cowboys dynasty. Though I don't see good ole .500 Fisher getting a team anywhere near that good.

Glad to see the D making plays at the end of the game. And anyone mention Vernon? 2 huge sacks, guy will be a good compliment to Wake and more proof that Ireland drafts good...

CommonSense,

I think Fisher is a very good coach & the Rams have a much better defense than most people think BUT I'm confident that we hired the right guy for this football team.

I'll admit I wanted Fisher in Miami b/c he was a proven HC & I didn't know much about Philbin. I can't think of too many coaches I'd rather have developing Tannehill right now than him & Sherman. Yeah I know he said he's not that involved with Tannehill's development but I think he's being modest. What I do know for a fact is that he's involved with the improvement of the O-line & developing Jonathan Martin into a starting RT.

I'm not completely dismissing Fisher, he is a good coach, but I do believe he is over-rated to a degree. That team isn't too bad now as is, and with those picks/his coaching should be a decent if not a playoff team.

I was glad they hired Philbin, I was a fan of new blood rather than a veteran HC. Also wouldn't have minded the Bears ST coach (forgot his name). Both would have been decent picks, imo. I was skeptical about Sherman, but he is doing a great job overall(minus a couple of plays I found odd).

I read today that Mike Pouncey is the #1 rated centre in the NFL right now by PFF. Kudos to the Gator. Prooving that he is every bit as good as his twin.

CommonSense,

Hard to discount the effect Sherman has had on Tannehill. Knew the kid better than anyone & Tannehill knows Sherman's offense. If that's not the perfect situation for a rookie QB I don't know what it is.

Okay...Having some more playmakers on offense certainly couldn't hurt. Watching the Notre Dame/Stanford game each team had a TE that could help us in the passing game.

By the way, Helmet Head Kiper has an article on ESPN's Insider rating the 2011 NFL draft class. He goes on and does a redraft - JJ Swatt is #1 (fine), Dalton is #3 which I find bizarre because I'm just not sold on him yet as that kind of talent. But he goes on to give several honoroable mentions to players like nate Solder and Jabal Sheard (what's a Jabal Sheard?) but makes no mention whatsoever of our Mike Pouncey. He subsequently gets shredded in the comments section for this ommission.

Some Bills fans try to make a case for Dareus but really, 54 points, 45 points, 30th in rush defense, no sacks ... where exactly is Dareus' impact being felt??

WHRBs, ND's TE is supposed to be the first off the board in the late first/early second. Here's to Indy crashing out this year so we could grab him potentially.

Imagine that .. top rated TE in the class in exchange for Vontae... nobody could ever say that would be a bad trade ...

A better TE would help a lot. Fasano isn't bad by any means, but certainly isn't the game breaking TEs that have come about lately in the NFL. I had high hopes for Clay, but idk what went wrong there. Some flashes, but very inconsistent now.

Honestly I think the WRs are an alright group now, I always liked Hartline/Bess, but I would still like to see a true #1. Hartline has great hands, but I still see him as a solid 2 WR. By that I mean he doesn't demand doubles or consistently beat coverage.

RG3 is good. But they are destroying his development! On top of getting hit! They are creating bad habits! Not saying don't run around.

Just learn from the pocket!

T-Hill is being developed the right way! Yes, it might be slow to some! But Sherman is just restricting his athletic ability not his mind! Sherm is spoon feeding him to the NFL! Learn the pocket! Week 1 problem was that he only let him do short drops the first half! Chad Pennington game.

Sherm won't unleash T-Sizzle until he knows that the kid can win from the pocket!!!! Trust me if someone wants to see grease lightning!!!! It's Dashi!!!! The kid can fly! People forget that he ran that 4.6 on a bad foot!!!! He's strong to! How many times have u seen T-Hill just muscle his way to the outside and just stop like the LOS was on fire!!

T-Sizzle still wants to dive head first!! U don't do that in the NFL!! Else u will get lit up!!!! Like rg3! Or have 250+ LB's hanging from u like Bradford!

Sherman is thinking long term! T-Sizzle is like a son! He wants him to be great! Shanahan just wants to win now! And them 3 picks hurt! Specially in the first round with the new CBA!!! U can get good young players for cheap!!!

To put it into perspective! Bradford had the last huge #1 contract! $60 mil! U can get RG3 and the other 2-1st rd picks and still have cap space to spend!

The Rams if drafting right can fix a lot of problems! While the skins need to hope Shanahan doesn't burn RG3 out to quick!

...Look at the schedule. If we can get out of these contest with a winning record(the next 5)..We can really take a serious look at being a playoff team. Until then I would say just enjoy the ride.

Once we get to week 12 it is on. We will get a real chance to see where we are at in this week, and then week 13. We may not even play a team with a 500 record until these games. Perhaps Seattle, maybe the jets, maybe the Bills. But no juggernaughts, no serious contenders.

So the barometer of our team really starts if we can make it to this week with a record in the red. We can beat a bunch of teams at say our level, or below. But how do we stack up against the best? If we make it to this point we can take a real serious run at being a playoff team.

F#ck Mel Kiper.

Tyler Eifert is the TE from ND that I like. I really like Zack Ertz from Stanford too but he's a Junior. As for WR I like this kid DeAndre Hopkins from Clemson.

"WHRBs, ND's TE is supposed to be the first off the board in the late first/early second. Here's to Indy crashing out this year so we could grab him potentially.

Imagine that .. top rated TE in the class in exchange for Vontae... nobody could ever say that would be a bad trade ..."

Mark,

The only people who can say that it was a 'bad trade' are people in the Colts organization, Colts fans, & trolls on Dolphin blogs.

I am not even thinking about the final record of the season or the playoffs. This team is all about the current week. Small steps and clear focus will help this team continue to advance.

Things to be excited about heading into the bye week:

1) Players playing for the new coaching staff,
2) THILL showing progress and that he was the right choice in the 1st Round.
3) Defensive Line getting it done against the rush and pass.
4) Bess, Hartline, Fasano and Moore are not Elite Level but they can keep the chains moving and score enough points to win games.
5) Bush, Thomas, Miller and Lane will no be viewed as a top notch backfield but they are getting it done.

Things to improve upon during the bye week:

1) More consistent coverage and stronger hitting from our D-Backs.
2) More consistent run blocking from the OLine - especially in short yardage.
3) Improve our LB's coverage against tight ends.
4) Few mental mistakes from the OLine - penalties and blown pass coverage assignments that are leading to QB pressures/sacks.

Go Miami!!!

If all our players are so great how come we stink?

Another close one thanks to the stinkin REFS!!!
Bad calls go back to the relief refs.

"A better TE would help a lot. Fasano isn't bad by any means, but certainly isn't the game breaking TEs that have come about lately in the NFL. I had high hopes for Clay, but idk what went wrong there. Some flashes, but very inconsistent now.

Honestly I think the WRs are an alright group now, I always liked Hartline/Bess, but I would still like to see a true #1. Hartline has great hands, but I still see him as a solid 2 WR. By that I mean he doesn't demand doubles or consistently beat coverage."

Common Sense,

I'm with you. A pass catching TE would do wonders for this offense. I like Fasano as well but imagine we had a guy like Coby Fleener instead of Clay??? Lots of good football players who are extremely intelligent from Stanford & I'm very happy we took Martin. I say keep drafting from the talent pool at Stanford & the U.

I was never thrilled with Fisher coming to Miami. Just that based on being a brand name and his hc experience, he seemed like the best hc prospect available. We can "ALL" now thank our Lucky stars both Fisher and Peyton Manning said no this offseason. Here's why:

Fisher:

Ultra conservative play great defense, gain field position, and run, run, run style of coaching. Not very imaginitive either. Here in Miami, when was the last time we could say we were outplayed, but, "OUTCOACHED" the opposing team?

Yes, Philbin "OUTCOACHED" Fisher yesterday. Both with the halftime adjustments and the "fake punt" decisicion. Philbin spotted thier st's weakness on film in preparation for the game. Its usually the opponent that does that to us. Philbin decisively outcoached Fisher and had our players more prepared to win the game.

Oh, if soon to fall apart Peyton Manning had come to Miami. At least 2013(next year) we would be searching for his hier apparent to groom under him. Meaning most likely, we wouldnt now be experiencing "Tanne-Thrill Mania in Miami.

As I was leaving the game yesterday, I wondered how did we win that game? I mean I'm glad but the Rams were moving the ball up and down the field and our O was just not doing it. The D couldn't stop 'em.

I think the difference is making plays at crucial times. We seen it last week and this week too. Holding for 3 at the goal line. Turnovers...we got robbed twice but it shows some intensity.

BTW, I've been critical of Shermans play calls but he called a good game yesterday. And not just the run calls to burn time.

How the heck did we win without 3 pick Daniel Thomas? LOL

Clemons is not getting the credit he deserves this season. Sure Jones has played extremely well & he deserves the praise but there were MANY people on here saying that Clemons sucked which is just not the case.

key was what killed us last few losses, the kicker. rams win the game if that kid hits his kicks

And Chris Clemons will also be a FA.

Bill...

Give the credit of those MISSED kicks were it belongs....

to the T-shaped hands of coach JOE...

He iced the kicker early...and he never recovered....

Philbin is responsible for 6 points NOT making it to the score board....

the last kick NEVER HAD A CHANCE...By then...Joe had already turned the kicker into mental mush...

Game ball to Moore, I don't know how many times I said look at Gafney contributing already...wait, that's Moore. All I know is T-hill starting to make me feel like we got the East in our pocket. Go fins baby!

key was what killed us last few losses, the kicker. rams win the game if that kid hits his kicks

Bill,

That was a 66 yard FGA!!! The longest FG in NFL history is 63 yards so the chances of that kid making it were not exactly good.

Guys,

This team is now playing as well, if not better, than in 2008. At least we dont have a noodled armed qb under center.

If this teams continues to make game for game strides. It will become much easier for Ireland/Philbin to properly identify which team positions need to have the truest upgrade by seasons end.

In plumbing, when the entire pipe leaks, patching holes is completely futile. Almost, or the entire pipe needs replacing.

Yeah Clemons has stepped up.

Another thing I was impressed with and I think it goes back to coaching was the awareness on the final drive while trying to eat the clock up. Everyone stayed in bounds even on sideline catches. After Clays minor mistake in the last game, I wouldn't be suprised if this was a point of emphasis at practice this week.

All and all the team is looking good. Schedule doesn't look very tough, if they can get a split out of the AFC East and a couple other wins 9-12 are possible. A sweep of the Bills/Pats would be nice, but hard to sweep a team. Will be nice just to split with the Pats, been awhile.

FISHER WAS OUTCOACHED BY PHILBIN YESTERDAY. PLAIN AND SIMPLE!

WHRBs, I disagree. Watch those games closer. He's out of place on many, many plays. Don't let one play (fake punt) blur your vision. He's a Safety. Misses tackles, takes bad angles, can't cover. There's a reason we're the top rated run defense OTHER than our stout front 7. It's that our secondary is so porous teams have an easier time passing. Remember the Jets game? That was Mark Sanchez torching us. Has he done it against ANYONE ELSE this year? No.

Clemons has a lot of improvement to make before I think of him as a legit starter.

Right now this entire defensive backfield is the slightest above slightly above average. Sean Smith is playing borderline pro bowl ball. He still needs to continue to improve to be a legit pro bowl calibre corner. Same analysis goes to Reshad Jones.

Our secondary hasnt made a vast improvement, but they have made a "slight" improvement. The single greates improvement in our pass defense, single handidly goes to the vast improvement of our pass rush.

Tell you guys what, if the revived pass rush we now witness, regresses. We are right back to the same rag tag secondary we've always known. There's no player in our secondary that could be legitimately be considered pro bowl calibre, not yet any way.

We have a couple(Smith/Jones) that can be considered borderline pro bowlers at very best. Thats on a good day.

Good thing we dont have to play Baltimore, Green Bay, Atlanta, the Giants, or Pitt.

You cant say if Zurlein hits his kicks the Rams win because thats not accounting the kick off returns that Thigpen MAY have returned or what the offense WOULDVE done in response to the field goals. What did happen was T-Hill took the game on his shoulders since the run wasnt there and threw two TD's and the Defense didnt break and give up a TD minus the QB sneak that Dansby almost broke Bradfords back on lol.. That was ridiculous. Im surprised he didnt get hurt on there.. Bradford that is.

Not saying he is great by any means, but Nolan Caroll, from as bad as he was last year to being servicable this year is a big improvement and he will only get better.

Great for this team to be 3-3 even though they let a couple get away. Philbin seems like he can develope players. Tannehill is more poised now and has a lot of confidence Philbin, was a greater loss to Green Bay than most people thought. The fake punt sealed the game taking an extra minute and a half off the clock.
Brandon Fields is the best punter in the league he changes field position with every boot.

The DBACKS are the #1 weakness of this team right now.

I agree with DC...look at the tape from each game and MOST of the big plays given up by the Fin's Defense involves Chris Clemons out of position or taking bad angles to the ball. Simply put, he is a liability and not a starting NFL Safety. Too much time under his belt to not show consistency. He has to go after this season.

Smith seems to play to the level of competition. When he gets to play man cover on tru #1 receivers he does well. But in zone cover against rookies and #2 and #3 receivers he plays too soft. He needs to be more consistent.

Wilson and Carroll are trying to contribute and are doing fine as 'fill ins.' But they too are inconsistent and often unable to stop the 3rd down conversion. I don't see their press coverage skills being strong. They give too much of a buffer.

I like the progress shown by Jones. I think he shows real potential.

Marshall is not a starting CB in the NFL. Maybe a Nickel back but that's it. I see better play from the D unit without him on the field.

Their kicker missed 3 kicks!! Very lucky to win yesterday.

I dont see drafting a te high this offseason neither. I fully trust Philbin to have Egnew up and running next season.

Like another poster posted today. I believe they're bulking Egnew up(weight room) to handle the physicality of nfl level blocking. They're coaching him up on technique, route running, and whatever else needed. So when he's fully unvield, he's as close to a finished product, as humanly possible.

I believe Egnew will be a very fine te when this coaching staff is finished with him. We may already have our pro bowl calibre te. Right now he's being properly assembled.

Greg Cote said it right:

"On a day when a strong Rams defense bottled up Reggie Bush and the ground game and forced the result into Tannehill’s hands, all he did was deliver, though quietly, as if it was fully expected. On a day when a Tannehill turnover would likely have turned this game, he kept it clean. This is a good sign: When your rookie quarterback’s strong performance begins to become assumed, like, no big deal."

We have 2 of 4 pieces in the secondary. Dashi would like to see us get a FS early next year! I think we can survive with Smith and Marsha 2.0 at CB's and Carroll as a Nickel and Wilson in the dime. A good FS makes ur CB's better! Look at the Seahawks! Probably the best secondary in the NFL! And it's because they have 2 safety's that cover the whole back end of the field! Not just One Half!

Playmakers! Ball hawks! Let Coyle have his draft! 2012 was mostly for Sherman! Do it vice versa! Go all defense and 1 offense! With offensive player being a WR! Bess, hartline, Matthews, and some rookie next year! Plus fix our FS and LB's problem!

Im giving most of the credit of a much improve secondary to a much improved pass rush. The pass rush is forcing more faster and less accurate passes to come off of qb hands.

Since the improved pass rush I've seen many times the qb was forced to throw sooner than he liked and missed "WIDE OPEN" recievers in our secondary.

"WHRBs...
there 3-3...."
Kris,
You're correct. The Redskins are 3-3 & not 2-3.
The point I was making is that they are NOT a complete football team. They're a good offensive team & they can DEFINITELY run the football BUT they allow WAY many points. Right now they're allowing 28.8 per game & that's just not going to get it done in the NFL.
Not having a first round pick in 2013 & 2014 is something that most teams can not afford.

Posted by: We Have RB's | October 15, 2012 at 01:12 PM

And how does the skins not being a complete team have ANYTHING to do with my earlier comments?

"RGIII was the best player in the draft & will reward the skins a decade of excellence"

That's what I said. Nothing more nothing less. You've gone on post after post about the skins team, the talent, the injury risk & blah blah blah!

FOCUS FOR A MOMENT ON WHAT WAS SAID, NOT WHAT WASN'T.

You homers like to spin EVERYTHING to fit your talking points but, it doesn't change anything.

First you dummies call everyone a jets fans & now Raven fans? Pathetically desperate!

If anything, you further proved the case for RGIII. They are not a complete team & has his team at 3-3. You see what good QB play can bring?

He's a rookie & like Tanny is learning! He'll do what he has to to stay healthy in the future. Every team strives for consistency from the QB. Look no further than South Florida for proof.

But, I expect you to come back with more talking points unrelated to anything I said.

it appeared visible to me that mathew stafford's skill set is better then that of tannehill's, this might be so, his arm may be stronger and he has the heigth advantage, but QB's such as drew breeze nulify such comparisons, my question is this... actually 2 questions...1) is mathew stafford's superior velocity and deep ball(when compared to ryan tannehill) a direct result of protection(time allowed to throw) or is it more of a reflection of his skill set. seems to me that tannehill had very little time to set his feet....

jpao,

Exactly why I now call Tannehill, "TANNE-THRILL".

Tanne has place "the thrill" back into the qb position in Miami, and each game continues to get better.


The Fins took care of business. The defense bent quite a bit, but the only stat that matters is the scoreboard. Glad Tannehill had another game where he protected the football as well as tossing two TDs. Good teams are able to find ways to win games. Is this team good? Time will tell.

thanx the blax qb's knee and he thanx ross 4 the $mil. bux.
lol

long bust.
incognito bust.
clay bust.
jerry bust.
eggnew still bust.
nolan bust.
barnett bust.
lol

budtki,

Taking nothing away from Matthew Stafford, but he has Megatron. Can you imagine what our offense would now look like if Tannehill had Megatron?

Without Megatron, IMO, Matthew Stafford would be somewhere around a top 10 to top 13 qb at best. I believe Tanne-Thrill has far better athleticism, pretty even as far as making all of throws, may even be a slightly better decisicion maker, and more natural upside than Stafford.

My plan for Free Agency:

Starks - top priority - must keep
Bush #2 priority - must keep (too good in the locker room and as a receiver)
Smith #3 priority - must keep, if more consistent
Long #4 priority - keep at fair wage nothing more
Dansby #5 priority - only if his salary comes down
Hartline #6 - only if we pay him like a #2 or #3 WR

In my mind a perfect draft would be:

1 - WR or CB best talent available
2 - WR or CB best talent available
2 - S (need position - replace Clemons)
3- LB (Need position replacing either Dansby or Burnett)
3 - T (need position - either a back up or replacement for RT after Martin goes to replace Long in FA).
4 - TE (need position - hope Egnew makes it and this become our #2 TE).
5 - RB - (do we need to replace Thomas and/or Bush)?
6 - CB (backup - keep adding to the weak back field)
7 - G (backup prospect)

dwayne bowe...

With a highly upgraded recieving corps. I believe Tanne-Thrill could be a top 5 qb within 2-3 more seasons. The kid's smart as a whip, has all of the tools and athleticism, and seems to have that indefinable "IT" factor.

I am glad that ROBERT DUVALL is our coach.

CLUBBER LANG is our ferocious Sacking DE

ROBERT BACKUS aka MR. HOWELL/MR. MAGOO is our owner

and left guard EPHIALITES/HUNCHBACK of the film 300 as well.

Can't forget Thomas Lennon as Lt. Jim Dangle
leaving Reno 911 to become our best wide receiver!

Go Phins!!!

2 watt - bust

jpao,

2013 we have a 1st, two 2nds, and two 3rd rd picks. That's 5 of the top 100 players available. So I highly doubt we'll see a huge fa splash during the offseason.

I see us resigning as many of our own fa's that are worthy and adding cheap depth. Besides, once these big splash fa's sign huge contracts, then begins the slide in thier great play.

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