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49 posts from October 2012

October 14, 2012

Dolphins lead 17-6 to start fourth quarter

The Dolphins came out of the locker room and drove right down for a TD to start the half and take a 17-6 lead.

It seemed like the Rams were fading and the Dolphins had their schwerve on.

But, alas, the game slowed thereafter.

And these two teams are still locked in a dogfight of sorts. This game will be decided in the fourth quarter.

And the live blog will continue in the comments section.

Dolphins lead Rams 10-6 going to third quarter

The Dolphins have yielded over 300 gross yards to the Rams. They've struggled along the offensive line and have been gernally outplayed all around.

But they lead the St. Louis Rams, 10-6.

The reason?

Ryan Tannehill is having a good day, completing 11 of 15 passes for 108 yards including a touchdown to Marlon Moore. And following the TD, the Dolphins picked up a key turnover when Marcus Thigpen recovered a fumble that led to a Dan Carpenter FG.

The Miami defense has kept the Rams out of the end zone and rookie kicker Greg Zuerlein, who had not missed a kick in 15 tries before today, has missed twice today.

The live blog continues in the comments section.

Rams lead Dolphins 6-0 to start second quarter

The Dolphins have given up a pair of field goals to the Rams and their kicker Greg Zuerlein.

The Dolphins, the NFL's top run defense, has given up 63 yards on four carries to Daryl Richardson. The Team was allowing an average of 61 yards per game before today.

The offense, meanwhile, has been inconsistent.

So Miami has its work cut out for them.

This one may not be easy.

The live blog continues in the comments section. Join me there.

Live blog coming while Gaffney, Egnew inactive again

The St. Louis Rams just announced the Dolphins inactives. Sad, but true. Theinactives are:

Michael Egnew, Jabar Gaffney, Pat Devlin, Richard Marshall, Daniel Thomas, and Rishard Matthews.

That means linebacker Kevin Burnett, who appeared on the injury report Friday with an ankle injury, is active and apparently starting.

I know what you're about to say: Gaffney is a disappointment. Well, not yet. Obviously he still is not quite familiar enough with the offense to be viable on game day. But it has only been two weeks since he arrived.

He gets a bye week this week to learn the offense better. I suppose/expect he'll be in the playbook catching up rather than vacationing in the Bahamas with teammates. If he doesn't know the offense when the team comes back Oct. 28, then I have to question his learning prowess.

As you know, the Dolphins will induct Zach Thomas and Jason Taylor into their Honor Roll today. The new name tags are in the west end of the stadium.

There will be a live blog. It happens in the comments section below. I will join you at kickoff.

A day to remember good 'ol days and chase new good days

The Dolphins are aiming at a .500 record today (I picked them to win). They are trying to do right by televising a game that really did not sell out. They are trying to find the right course and navigate to better days.

That's today.

But today is also about some better days -- the days Zach Thomas and Jason Taylor were on the team.

Taylor and Thomas are going into the Dolphins Honor Roll today, and as I write in my column at The Miami Herald, it is a nostalgic time for the pair who were the signature players of this franchise for many years.

Check the column as the duo share the irony of their greatest NFL moments, share what being on the Honor Roll means to them, share with you what they would do if possible to fill the void that was left in their careers.

A couple of things I didn't have room to fit in the column that I will here because, you know, there's no space crunch or deadline here as promised:

What do he pair not miss about the NFL grind?

“There really is nothing," Taylor said, "especially now with the new [workout] schedule, it’s really easy now. This is an easy job. It’s an easy, fun job. I won’t miss the losing. But the problem with not risking the losing is you don’t get a chance to win. And that sucks.”

“You sound like the old guys when we were playing that would say, ‘You guys have two-a-days, well we used to have three-a-days,’" Thomas chimes in. "Now you’re one of those guys.” 

"Dude," Taylor responds, "these guys today wear pads once a week.”

A pause from Thomas and then, "That’s true,” he said. "There’s nothing I don’t miss -- because even the losing, that made you more focused the next week. And the stress? Man, that’s what I miss the most because that brings out the best in you. You know?”

 Thomas played for the Dolphins from 1996 through 2007. What made him so very, very good?

“No. 1 he was more prepared than anybody on the football field," Taylor said. "He was ultra competitive, very intense, very focused. He refused to lose. And he always played with that chip on his shoulder and carried himself with that chip on his shoulder. He refused to be denied. It was amazing to run around and do the things he did. As a teammate, you know he’s playing well. You watch him all week. You see him do it throughout the course of the year. And I never felt he got the respect or notoriety for it off the field that he deserved. That used to [peeve] me off. Not to take away what any other linebacker would do who was playing well. But I saw what this guy was doing. And he just kept on going."

Taylor played for the Dolphins from 1997-2007, then in 2009 and 2011. Why is he going to get Hall of Fame consideration?

"No.1, he’s just the most competitive person I’ve ever been around," Thomas said. "He’d do whatever. He’d throw his head in there, he sacrificed a lot on the field because he’s a wild man on the field. You only get respect in the locker room when you make plays on the field and he had an impact on the field. He was a high-character guy that everybody respected. He got more respect from his teammates than anybody else I ever played with."

Come back for today's live blog ...

October 12, 2012

Quickie live chat at 3 p.m.

It's Friday. Before you check out for the weekend, let's talk!

There will be a live chat on here starting at 3 p.m.

Ask your questions ... make your comments ... interact!

I'll be here as long as the questions continue. 

Richard Marshall out (again) this week

Cornerback Richard Marshall is not playing on Sunday against the St. Louis Rams, according to a source.

That should not surprise anyone considering he didn't practice Friday ... or Thursday ... or Wednesday. He didn't play last week. He didn't practice last Friday ... or Thursday ... or Wednesday. And not only has he not practiced, he's not been seen near the field because he's either been getting treatment for a back injury or seeing a doctor about this issue.

The Dolphins hope Marshall might be able to contribute after the coming bye week. But even that is uncertain.

Nolan Carroll, who had a good game in Marshall's absence last week, is also nursing an injury but he is expected to start again despite a sore Achilles.

On another injury front, it is also looks doubtful running back Daniel Thomas will play Sunday against St. Louis but I am only speculating on this one. He's been nursing his second concussion in four games this season. He missed the Oakland game after his first concussion, suffered at Houston.

Again, the club is hopeful Thomas will be cleared and able to play following the bye week.

The Dolphins will release their injury report later today.


Jabar Gaffney has not learned the playbook yet

On a handful of times this week Dolphins wide receiver Jabar Gaffney, signed just over a week ago, has told reporters he's ready to play Sunday against the St. Louis Rams.

"I'll be there," he said. "Ready to play. I'm excited about it."

Yeah, well, why doesn't coach Joe Philbin sound quite as enthusiastic about the prospect of putting Gaffney, inactive last week, on the field this week?

“He’s making progress. He’s making progress, yeah," Philbin said. "Part of it is getting through the terminology barrier. Part of it is learning the concepts themselves. Football’s football. It’s not all that much different, but still there’s a little bit. He’s working hard at it, staying after practice. We’ll see how he progresses."

Let me break that down for you: Gaffney can be an asset once he's in football shape (not quite there yet), healthy (pretty much there) and fully versed in the playbook (not there at all). Gaffney, I'm told, is finding a comfort level with his game plan assignments. He's got some of that down. But he is nowhere near knowing the Dolphins playbook and he is struggling to learn the language of the playbook and calls.

So, yes, the team wants him and needs him. But is he truly ready?

"It can be a little bit more of a challenge if they haven’t been around much," Philbin said of the difficulty of putting a new player into games. "I think he’s making good progress."

We should know exactly how good Sunday.


October 11, 2012

Dolphins to telecast Sunday's game vs. St. Louis

OK, so maybe it's not a sellout.

But if you are in South Florida and want to see the Dolphins play the St. Louis Rams, you can do so on television because the Dolphins have guaranteed the purchase of any remaining tickets.

That means the team has complied with the NFL requirement for lifting the TV blackout.

Tickets remain on sale.

This game may not be the sexiest because, well, the Rams are team without much success lately.

But the game does offer the Dolphins the opportunity to reach .500 for the second time this season. It will also mark a ceremony for former Dolphins Jason Taylor and Zach Thomas -- both of whom will be inducted into the Dolphins Honor Roll.

[Update: A couple of players you are unlikely to see are cornerback Richard Marshall and running back Daniel Thomas. Although Marshall is pushing to play Sunday, a source tells me he's likely going to miss the game barring a fantastic and unexpected recovery between now and then. Marshall missed practice again today. Thomas also is not expected to play because of a concussion. He is hoping to be cleared for contact by the end of the week (Friday) but the club is being very cautious because he's had two concussions in four games this year. Not good.]



Dolphins face tough sales dilemma, fans face tough choice

The Dolphins will not sell out this Sunday's game in which the St. Louis Rams will visit Sun Life Stadium. That is a virtual fact already given the thousands of tickets that remain unsold as of this writing and the thousands more tickets (often going below market value for seats in better locations) that are available through the secondary market.

That's the problem the Dolphins face this week and have been facing for some time as they continue to weigh whether to -- gulp --  buy their own tickets and lift the TV blackout in the local market.

We know that so far the Dolphins have bought up remaining tickets to ensure the lifting of the TV blackout. I have a guess as to what the Dolphins will do today at the deadline but because it is only a guess and major dollars are at stake for other folks based on what I might write I don't want to share it here.

We'll know soon enough if the Dolphins dig into their own pockets and pay the bill that fans normally pay to make sure the game is televised. Or if the deadline comes and the team allows the blackout to stand.

But what I do want to do today is explain to you the dilemma the team faces in making the decision whether to continue buying its own product (tickets) in hopes that eventually fans will return to the fold and do the buying instead.

Here's the dilemma:

If the Dolphins were playing hardball and not caring whether you fans see the game on television or not, they would simply let Thursday's deadline come and pass and announce the sufficient number of tickets were not sold.

Remember, this is a low threshold. The Dolphins this year are needing to sell 15 percent fewer tickets for a sellout to be granted and yet fans aren't even doing that for this game.

The team could say, "If you want to see the game, South Florida, you have to purchase a ticket and come out to the stadium."

The club is perfectly within its right to do this.

The problem is the Dolphins are on something of a roll of late. They have a chance to even their record at 3-3 on Sunday.  The team has been competitive so far this season. By all accounts the decade-long struggle to find a good young quarterback finally seems on the road to being solved.

So the team wants to continue riding that wave of goo feelings. The club wants please its fans and its fans have universally requested that all the games be on local TV. And the last three weeks, in two overtime losses and a victory over Cincinnati, the TV ratings have reflected a significant uptick in fan interest.

On the other hand, the Dolphins are also a private business. And it is a bad business model to buy your own product and then give it away free on television. (Sounds remotely similar to what newspapers do, but that's another story.)

At some point, the team must and will put its proverbial cleat down and say, "No more free rides. If games aren't sold out, they're not televised."

But is that time now?

Is that time in the middle of this so-called roll I just described above? Are the Dolphins in a position of sufficient strength to tell their fans that they must be at the stadium to see the game or otherwise they won't see the game?

The Tampa Bay Bucs made that call a couple of years ago. You know what the Tampa Bay fans did?

They didn't buy tickets to the games to see the team play. And they stopped watching on television also.

So what the Dolphins have going on is a high wire act.

And this is where you come in ...

The Miami Dolphins read this blog. That is not bragging. It is simply true. Folks at all levels of the organization read this blog from the very top on down. And they read your comments.

So here is the question of this day as the blackout deadline looms and the team makes the delicate decision whether to buy its own tickets and televise the game, or allow the facts of the current market to be the facts of the current market and black out the game:

As fans would you blame the Dolphins if they stop buying their own tickets and the game is blacked out?

Or do you put the responsibility of buying tickets on the actual ticket-buying public and blame fan apathy or a tough economy for the blackout?

And if the Dolphins make the hard decision of blacking out the game, would that decrease your overall excitement about this team? Would you blame the team for a bad public relations move? Or would you understand that business is business and this too shall pass?

This is your chance to tell the team what you, the fans, think ...

Show wisdom in your answers because they matter.

October 10, 2012

Morning news on Thomas, Fisher, steaks

This is what's happening at this hour:

Running back Daniel Thomas, who apparently suffered his second concussion in five weeks on Sunday, has not been cleared for contact and is not practicing this morning. Thomas will be re-evaluated later this week to see if he can pass the NFL mandated tests by an independent doctor before he can be cleared to practice, much less play on Sunday.New Thomas

Thomas missed a game against the Oakland Raiders after he suffered a concussion in the opner against Houston. His status against the Rams on Sunday is questionable at best, although that status doesn't come out officially until Friday.

Without Thomas at practice, that means Lamar Miller is taking second-team snaps as he's the next guy up on the depth chart. Reggie Bush continues to be Miami's starting RB.


The Richard Marshall back saga continues.

Marshall, whose missed practice most of the past two weeks and did not play at Cincinnati, was not at practice today. Nolan Carroll continues to take snaps with the starters in his absence.


As you know, Joe Philbin was Miami's second choice for the head coach job. First choice Jeff Fisher declined Miami's job offer and took the Rams job instead.

Now Fisher and the 3-2 Rams visit Philbin and the 2-3 Dolphins on Sunday at Sun Life.

Fisher was on a conference call today and had no interest relitigating the reasons he picked the Rams over the Dolphins.

"I went through that before, I don't think it's necessary to go through that again," Fisher said. "They made the right decision. They've got things going. Coach Philbin is doing an excellent job there. I really had a great time there. I have a lot of respect for Mr. [Stephen] Ross and [Jeff] Ireland and I felt this was the better opportunity for me."

As you know, Fisher was offered the job but wanted final organizational say over personnel as well as coaching decisions -- which he has in St. Louis. The Dolphins declined to give him say over personnel, deciding instead to keep that in Ireland's hands.


You're going to hear about this in the next couple of hours so I might as well tell you now. Much talk early in the lockerroom this morning centered around the dinner the offensive line had at Prime One Twelve on Miami Beach Monday night.

The total tab was approximately 7,400.

Word is the players ordered one and in some cases, multiples of everything on the menu. There was also wine, beer, shots and champagne.

The offensive line does this several times a year as a bonding experience.


Randy Starks, who had a monster game against Cincinnati on Sunday, has been named the AFC defensive player of the week.

Starks had an interception and was a beast against the run. He is also unsigned after this season.



The Dolphins this morning added linebacker Josh Kaddu off their practice squad to the active roster and added defensive end Louis Nzegwu to the practice squad.

October 09, 2012

Sherman tells what position on offense has improved most

It's one thing when I tell you how far a player has come and improved. It's one thing when you tell me how far a player has come and improved. But when the coaches see it, based on in-depth tape study of games as well as practice, based on personal interaction and evaluation, then we have something.

The Dolphins have something in Ryan Tannehill.

Mike Sherman, the Dolphins offensive coordinator, was asked Monday what area on offense has improved the most since the regular-season opener at Houston.

One guess ... it wasn't Charles Clay.

“I would have to say our quarterback position is the most dramatic improvement on the offensive side of the ball," Sherman said. "He just keeps getting better and better. Very seldom does he make the same mistake twice. You tell him that you need to do this and he does it. So I think that his maturation throughout the course of the NFL season, going into Week Six, he has taken steps every single week. He will continue to do that throughout the course of the season and the course of his career. So I would think that’s the single biggest jump this season."

Not only has Tannehill shown long-range improvement but he's playing better now than he did even a couple of weeks ago when I told you his accuracy was off. Since that time, he's delivered consecutive games with a completion percentages of over 60, including a career high 65 percent versus Cincinnati.

“I think his decision making has definitely improved over the last couple of weeks," Sherman said. "Each game we go into and come out of less and less of us being critical of his decisions. He’s made some very good decisions here as of late. The other thing I would say would be, push in the pocket. He had the tendency to leave the pocket with depth. Now he's stepping up in the pocket and finding throws to make. He had a great throw to (Davone) Bess on a scramble in the game. He’s created some plays with his feet by pushing up in the pocket. Yeah I would say those two areas, push in the pocket and decision making have definitely improved."

Tannehill is on the right path, folks. The case can be made that he is the second-best quarterback in the AFC East right now.

When was the last time the Dolphins could say that and believe it was a long-term truth? And, assuming he continues to get better, when was the last time one could believe eventually -- once Tom Brady's play begins to diminish with time -- that Miami could dominate the division because of its QB play?

Been a while.

[BLOG NOTE: I regret that we will no longer be including the feature videos on every Tannehill throw from week to week. The NFL's long legal arm contacted the maker of the videos that we've put up here for a month and informed him he was in violation of some policy or other. Then J.J. Watt knocked his front door down and told him if he didn't stop it, he'd break in two. So the videos are no more.]


October 08, 2012

The candidates for delivering the big plays

CINCINNATI -- Exciting despite the fact it was only 17-13, wasn't it? This Dolphins victory caused your heart to skip a beat almost as much of the previous two games against Arizona and the Jets.

Admit it.

When the Bengals got the football with 1:45 to play, you were nervous that a victory might be slipping away. But as I write in my column today, the Dolphins finally found someone, anyone to make a play.

Reshad Jones did that Sunday.

"I read the quarterback and did what I do best, go and get the ball," Jones said.

Good. It's going to have to become something of a habit for the Dolphins because after nearly a month of watching games come down to the wire -- and sometimes extend into overtime -- I get the feeling that's just how it's going to be for much of the next two months.

The Dolphins are going to have to find a playmaker, a hero, a man of the hour, to nail down victories week after week.

There are candidates for the role:

Randy Starks: Playing great, had an interception and half a sack Sunday.

Sean Smith: Playing great the past two games in helping to shut down Larry Fitzgerald and A.J. Green. He led the team in tackles on Sunday.

Reggie Bush: He started fast but yards have gotten tougher to come by lately. Eventually when teams go back to playing more balanced schemes instead of selling out to stop the run, the field will open up for Bush again.

Brian Hartline and Davone Bess: They are really the only two dependable receivers the Dolphins have.

Ryan Tannehill: He continues to progress. Eventually he'll have a game put on his shoulder and he'll have to deliver.

Guys that need to improve to be options to come through in tough spots:

Dan Carpenter: He missed another FG on Sunday, this one from 53 yards out. That's a long field goal to attempt. Joe Philbin said he went with it because the wind was with Carpenter. Yeah, except Carpenter is in a slump and has missed three field goals the past three games. He did make a 46-yard attempt, but asking him to do anything from beyond that range is optimistic at best and more likely ill-advised.

So do the Dolphins continue to nurse their embattled kicker along?

I perceive the organization's collective patience is waning.

Charles Clay: There is a concerted effort to make him more woven into the fabric of the offense. But despite opportunities, Clay continues to disappoint. He dropped what might have been a long gain. And on his third-down reception inside of two minutes to play, he allowed himself to go out of bounds and stop the clock for the Bengals. Not good.

Anthony Armstrong/Jabar Gaffney: A source told me Gaffney was inactive for the game simply because he's still rusty after missing most of preseason and being unemployed the past month until last week. He needs to get in shape and ready ... Armstrong has been a disappointment in that he was basically handed snaps the first week but has been losing ground since. This says it all about Armstrong: He didn't play much, if at all, on offense on Sunday. And Marlon Moore, who had been inactive the past two weeks with an injury, did play on offense. So a player whose been injured has passed Armstrong.

Here's hoping the ones playing well continue and the one playing poorly improve. I say this because as my column makes the point: The way the Dolphins are playing, they're going to be in most games at the end and they're going to need someone to come through for them with one big play practically every game.

October 07, 2012

Dolphins beat Bengals 17-13

CINCINNATI -- The Dolphins had blown fourth-quarter leads in each of the past two weeks. Not this time!

Miami held on despite giving up a touchdown in the final stanza. The fact Cincinnati missed a 40-yard field goal and then Reshad Jones ended the Bengals final grasp at victory with an interception balanced this one in Miami's favor.

The Dolphins needed this one.

It is a lesson how to win on the road, or at least it can be used that way.

Ryan Tannehill did a good job keeping away from the turnover today. He completed 17 of 26 passes for 223 yards with neither a TD nor INT.

The Dolphins are 2-3 and go home next week against the Rams.

Dolphins lead Bengals 17-6 to start fourth quarter

CINCINNATI -- Last time they were on the road, the Dolphins blew an 11-point lead. They have a 13-point lead now.

But the Bengals have the ball at the Miami 3 to start the fourth quarter and are threatening.

Can Miami hold on to win?

We'll find out as the live blog continues in the comments section. Join me there.

Dolphins lead Bengals 7-6 going to third quarter

CINCINNATI -- This is a hard game to get a grasp on.

The Dolphins gave six points away in the first quarter. The Bengals had two turnovers in the second quarter and the Miami offense moved the ball very well on one drive to take a 7-6 lead at halftime.

Interesting that Nolan Carroll is holding up so far.

Cincy QB Andy Dalton is clearly not having a good day, with his accuracy way off. He has comleted 11 of 18 passes for 83 yards. Ryan Tannehill so far is the better QB in this game. He is 7of 10 for 101 yards.

The live blog continues in the comments section below. See you there.

Bengals lead Dolphins 6-0 going to second quarter

CINCINNATI -- The Dolphins have played terrible so far.

They've committed two turnovers. They've missed tackles. They have been their own worst enemy.

And yet they only trail 6-0. Consider that a blessing because it could be much worse.

We'll see if the team can turn things around. The live blog continues in the comments section below. Join me there.

Live blog of Dolphins vs. Bengals here

CINCINNATI -- Something's different today.

The season has changed in that the weather is officially turning to Fall. It's jacket weather here -- in the 40s, gray overcast. It just feels like football weather.

The season has changed in that pretty soon the Dolphins either have to start winning some games or we're going to be discussing free agency and the draft as primary topics. In other words, as I asked in my column today, can the Dolphins salvage the season?

Players say yes. We'll see.

The inactives today are something of a surprise in that Jabar Gaffney is inactive. That is a disappointment because he's supposed to be a veteran upgrade at WR. He's healthy. Saw him working in warmups. Obviously, something didn't click in that he is not playing today.

Marlon Moore may have something to do with this. He's been inactive the past couple of weeks so he's back today. That frees him and Anthony Armstrong for WR work today.

The other inactives are Pat Devlin, Richard Marshall, Will Yeatman, Michael Egnew and Rishard Matthews. Carroll starts for the injured Marshall.

The live blog is coming also. It starts in the comments section at kickoff.

October 06, 2012

Travel day notes for consideration

Today's a travel for the Dolphins ... and me.

Kentucky here I come!!! (It borders Ohio, folks.)

Anyway things to consider today:

Is Nolan Carroll ready to start against the Bengals? Ready or not he is set for that role because Richard Marshall is out with a back ailment and that presses Carroll into his fifth career start and first of 2012. We all know Carroll has been inconsistent in his previous starts.

The Dolphins hope the progress he's shown to coaches so far this year can carry him through on Sunday.

“I think he has played well," coach Joe Philbin said. "We would like him to make more plays on the ball at times just like our other defensive backs. He’s a competitive guy, he's intelligent, and you know what you’re going to get from him when you put him in the game. You’re going to get a great effort from the kid on the special teams and defense. He’s done well, but I think there is room for improvement."

Let's face it, folks. Carroll was the Dolphins fourth cornerback when training camp began. Now he's starting. If he does not play well, I say the Dolphins are auditioning veterans on Tuesday.


Many of you have advocated the Dolphins start auditioning kickers after Dan Carpenter has struggled the past two weeks. Well, my understanding is that is exactly what will happen if the Miami kicker misses what is considered to be a makeable kick against the Bengals.

What is a makeable kick?

For Carpenter it seems anything from 45 yards in is a lock. Although he a terrible 29th in accuracy so far this season, he's one for one in the 40 to 45 yard range. The problem is the far distances, or 46 yards and above.

He is 0 for 3 in that department this season and here's something more troubling:

He's a mere 10 for 25 since 2010 from 46 yards or more out. He was, by comparison, 14 of 15 from that same range his first two seasons in 2008 and 2009.

It gets worse.

It so happens that Carpenter went on his slide right after he signed a four-year contract in July of 2010. He is making $2.525 million this season, which is already guaranteed. He's scheduled to make $2.675 million next year.

You better believe the team will bring in a kicker to try to beat him out next year. But this year? It's hard to find someone better on the street and it doesn't help matters any to cut a guy once you've guaranteed his salary for the season.

So if, and this is a big if, Carpenter struggles again Sunday, expect the Dolphins to bring someone in to audition. But none of that will automatically mean Carpenter will be out of a job.

The team might even be convinced to carry two kickers.

October 05, 2012

Live blog chat at 3 p.m. today

The Herald asks its "experts" to pick the outcome of the Dolphins game every week. Let me anticipate your next thought: "Well, they're obviously not contacting you, Salguero, because you definitely are not an expert."

In truth I am on the panel. And I have a perfect 4-0 record so far this year. I picked the Dolphins to beat the Raiders and picked them to lose the other three games they played and indeed lost. Not bragging. Just stating a fact.

My pick this Sunday?

I'm picking the Bengals. I think their passing game is too good. I think Miami's secondary, mediocre to begin with, is really a mess with a diminished or absent Richard Marshall. Marshall missed practice Friday for the third consecutive day and is expected to be doubtful for the game.

[Update: Marshall has been ruled OUT for the game. He will not play.]

The game is on the road. The Bengals defense creates a good pass rush and feeds off turnovers.

That's a lot to overcome.


If you wish to discuss this analysis or if you have anything else on your mind, I will be here starting at 3 p.m. for a live blog chat. Everything is on the table.

In the meantime, leave me your analysis of the coming game.

See you then.