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What to think about the Dolphins, what to do with Carpenter

GLENDALE, Ariz. -- You saw the good and you saw the bad during Sunday's 24-21 overtime loss here. As I wrote in my column that appears in Monday's Miami Herald, this game had plenty of both and you can choose to view it as a failure today or as a game with promise for tomorrow.

Frankly, I'm so sick of covering a loser, I really want to believe this game is the start of something good for the future.

And so I see Ryan Tannehill's 431 yards as a big deal. This was the second most yards any rookie QB in NFL history has thrown for in a game -- behind only Cam Newton's 432 last year versus Green Bay. It also the most passing yards by a rookie on the road.

The 431 yards tied for sixth most in Miami history. Of the top eight such performances in club history, Dan Marino has the other seven and Tannehill joins that list.

It was also a breakout day for Brian Hartline and Cameron Wake and Sean Smith and others. All good.

But ...

This was a loss, folks, and this season is officially in a tailspin. So tomorrow looks good. Today looks like a heaping pile.

The Dolphins have played well enough to be 3-1 this year. They seem every bit as good as the Jets and Cardinals to whom they have lost in overtime the last two weeks. But the fact is the Dolphins lost against two teams that aren't any better than them. And this game was lost while wasting many great, great performances.

So even when guys play great, these Dolphins find a way to lose.

And if you cannot win when half a dozen players are having great days, when can you win?

Then there is this:

Mike Sherman's play-calling puzzled me in crunch time again this week. Last week the Dolphins offensive coordinator went away from the running game in the fourth quarter and they blew a lead.

This week, the Dolphins had a 21-14 lead with 3:45 to play. The team just converted a first down on two running plays. Sherman runs on first down again. Then on second down and eight from the Arizona 43 yard line he runs again, right?. It only makes sense against a defense that was blitzing right up the middle all day, right? You want to run clock, right?

Nope. Sherman called a pass.

And the Cards blitzed. And Richie Incognito missed the blitzer who had a free run at Tannehill right up the gut. And the Dolphins quarterback got hit and sacked and stripped of the ball. Former Dolphins defensive lineman Vonnie Holliday recovered at his own 43.

The Cardinals then converted the turnover into a game-tying touchdown drive in regulation. And they won in overtime.

Frustrating play-calling.

There was also the mounting problems with kicker Dan Carpenter. Last week, he missed two field goals including a possible game-winner.

This week he missed a 51-yarder that was no gimme by any means, but nonetheless a makeable kick. Carpenter, so solid before the season that Miami didn't even bring a kicker to camp to compete against him, could have turned a 13-0 lead into a 16-0 lead.

The miss meant more than three points. It was a momentum killer. It heartened the Cardinals and gave their crowd hope. It wasn't long before the Cardinals took a 14-13 lead.

So what should the Dolphins do about Carpenter now? I asked Joe Philbin if he's concerned about Carpenter now and whether a move might be necessary.

“We’ll have to take a look and see how he did," Philbin said. "When you send your field goal kicker out there, hopefully you know they’re going to make kicks. I’m not sure that’s a concern right now at this moment.”

Not concerned? Really? If not now, then when?

Does Carpenter have to help blow a couple of more games?

The trouble is the Dolphins are financially committed to Carpenter. They aren't really going to cut him at this point. Do they bring in a kicker to send him a message that he has to get his stuff together?

That might end up being another thing that an already worried kicker has to think about. Of course, it might also light the proverbial fire under Carpenter.

No easy answers. None.

Comments

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Is Gary Yepremian still alive?

So yeah, if they can grab a WR and a shutdown corner back they can move Marshall to the nickle spot and we will be in business.
Posted by: Phins78 | October 01, 2012 at 06:16 PM

Definitely! And I think the best thing about it, this will be a worse case scenario. We could find TWO new starting corners or receivers.

I think Marshall was intended to be the nickle all along. But Davis' shenanigans and showing up out of shape AGAIN, changed all that.

Either way and in a worst case scenario, we are going to be ready to bust some freaking skulls next season.

Yeah odinseye Tannehill shows me a little more every week.

Two things I have noticed in the past two weeks that are encouraging.

1. I was worried about his passion for the game. He didn't seem to get ticked or have an intense look when I wanted to see it in preseason and then in game one. But the past two to three games he has shown a fire. It's just that look that says, "f%*k, this, time to get our a%$es in gear". I like to see a qb get mad. Joey Harrington (Joey Blue Skies) was the opposite. Never had that fire burning. And I could list hundreds of qbs who never had that fire and failed miserably in the nfl.

2. The audibling at the line is phenomenal for a rookie. Peyton didn't even do a lot of that his first season. This kid sees the field, seems to be able to read the defenses intentions, and then call a better play. He also is constantly changing the line protection. You would think the veteran linemen would be able to do that on their own but on more than one occasion I have seen Tannehill run up to the line and tell them where he wants them.

I don't know man. We've been burned so many times before so I won't make any predictions. I will just say I am very happy about Tannehills progress up until now.

You HAVE to love the fact that any time someone calls him out for something he comes back the following week and seems to have it fixed already. Promising, promising, promising.

Odin...
that is the DOUBLE -EDGED sword....
Posted by: Kris | October 01, 2012 at 06:20 PM

Sorry, I'm missing it?

In reference to what?

Cuban Menace holy s**t! What's up man, what name you been posting under or have you seriously been M.I.A.?

Phins78 is on. A number 1WR, will open up the field for the rest of the offense. Another starting CB and one more pass rusher and we are in business.

Posted by: fins4ever | October 01, 2012 at 06:25 PM

I agree. I think we could almost target a pass rushing outside linebacker over a DE. Depending on whose on the board of course.

But we have Wake, Odrick and even Starks if need be. Then Vernon and Shelby, who in my opinion will "Get There".

We have a Bigger need at Outside Linebacker. If he's a good pass rusher too. Bringing him along side of Wake on the same side? Yeah, then were talking defense!

Been in the South Pacific man.
Been "CHILL-LAXING"(AKA Retirement)

Very tired of playing for next year every year. This is the NFL. We have good lines on both sides of the ball and that should mean something, however in the new passing NFL we just don't have the secondary to keep up and it's killed us. Ireland better spend about 4 picks next draft in the secondary. I bet Nick Novak is in town tomorrow to compete with Carpenter.

It was a SUPER TOUGH TWO losses to take. But I've seen enough good things and improvements to ease the pain!

odinseye | October 01, 2012 at 06:31 PM

I must have looked at the replay of that fumble 20 times already and wonder in honesty what Pouncey was thinking with Cards LB Darryl Washington selling out so hard on that blitz he looks from some angles across the line. Sure Tannehill could have gone audible into shotgun but his Center should have called it out on the line as well and for those thinking he could have pitched it to Bush I suggest you watch the play again. Tannehill never got to take a second step before he gets drilled. He pitches that ball or tries and that thing would have been a 15 yard fumble or picked up for 6 the other way. The LB came across quicker than I've seen somebody in a looooong time that was a bang bang play.

FIN4LIFE, GREAT POST. I'm definitely in the camp for signing a free agent or two at the wr position and saving that pick for something better seeing how I'm not in love with any of the college receivers so far.

And a pass rush specialist with our #1 if there is one there would be amazing. Great pass rush makes cbs better. We were picked apart late because our defense was tired, couldn't get switched, and didn't have a lot of solid depth waiting. McDaniels being hurt was crushing yesterday. If he was playing our guys wouldn't have been as gassed at the end because we would have had a better rotation.

But I think you were saying we should grab a pass rush specialist and I am definitely down.

Got to go guys, ttyl,,,,peace.

Wow...refreshing to see that not everyone on here wants to run Philbin out of town on a rail....guy's doing pretty well with the dead man's hand he was dealt if you ask me.

Tannehill is gonna be good cause he doesn't get rattled. I thought it would be over when Cardinals went up a point, but he fought on and hit Hartline with that bomb. Very satisfying to see him come back like that. Been too many years since a Fin QB has battled like that.

Jake...I knew we were okay when he didn't fold after the week 1 shellacking we took in Houston.. The guy's going to be a superstar.

I wonder if the 16 players on injury report had more to do with the statistics the Fins put up against Arizona? Regardless, I was impressed with the team's improvement.

On the bright side, Fins are only ONE game out from being tied for first place in AFC East. I mentioned in a prior blog that I believe this division will probably be won with a 9-7 record.

Fins can easily reach 9-7 if they continue to put up numbers like last game.

Agreed Navy,
Philbin has brought some excitement back to the team. 1 and 3 sucks but I haven't seen a Fin team play this hard since the win streak with Satan to end the year a few years back before he back stabbed us. As far as offense goes, I can't remember passing stats like that out of this team for 20 years.

Odin, You old SO-AND-SO, How many village's have felt you anger this season so far????

Posted by: Cuban Menace | October 01, 2012 at 06:35 PM

I've been taking it easy lately. A little while back, me and my Two Oldest Sons smashed a party we went to play at.

A Steel Worker/Wanna Be Bass Player started it up and Me and My Brood took the Whole Place apart. My oldest Son was swinging a stratocaster like Thor swung his HAMMER! I told him: Next time pick up somebody elses cheaper guitar, but I was proud nonetheless.

State Police, Police Reports, the whole she-bang! No charges pending this time EITHER(at least none that I know of)!

Whoop WHOOOOOOP!

Of course all that was just before my Trampoline/Young Hottie accident in which I almost paralized myself. She was **ALMOST** worth it-LOL.

Which by the way, I finally got all the paper work/insurance dope straightened out. Just this morning they scheduled my consultation with the Nuerosurgeon(my second BTW. Had to have a second opinion on this one) and the Medical Faciltiy in which they'll do my Neck and shoulder surgeries.

ValHalla!!!!

Philbin will always have my respect for walking into the job of coaching one of the most troubled teams in the NFL after enduring an unspeakable tragedy during the offseason.

Odin, Easy man, Your not 25 anymore.,,
But the good thing is, Think about the Medication...
And I'am sure the small towns and hamlets are glad your on the "PUP" list.

I think Ireland needs to break the bank on Bowe. He puts up big stats on a shitty KC team. Grimes seems to be a winner for Atlanta as well. Eventhough he is hurt, Atlanta was so upset to lose him for the year. Gotta tell you something. No Diva corners just solid quiet ones.

I have a feeling that Egnew will turn it on mid season I have faith in him. I wouldnt be surprised if we see Jeff Fuller in a few weeks either. He was Tannehills favorite target plus he has the size we are missing.

Nothing good can come out of a loss by the Miami Dolphins. I'm telling you.

I think Ireland needs to break the bank on Bowe. He puts up big stats on a shitty KC team. Grimes seems to be a winner for Atlanta as well. Eventhough he is hurt, Atlanta was so upset to lose him for the year. Gotta tell you something. No Diva corners just solid quiet ones.

Jake in Pa | October 01, 2012 at 07:07 PM

The prize FA at DB next Yr. is Aqib Talib who I bet the Bucs let walk. The problem with him will be the offset language (which we seem to be good at putting in place) in any deal with this guy but that aside he is without doubt one of the 5 best at DB and he hits the market in 2013.

Philbin not the problem, the man has like 25 years of coaching in general. I like Philbin
I said it give Philbin full control of the team, let him bring his own GM that he feels comfortable with and believe in his philosophy.. Great game yesterday I pick them to win but we just ended up short. I say the best 1-3 team in the league.
LETS GO PHINS LET'S BEAT THOSE BENGALS I GUARANTEE A WIN NEXT WEEK. WE GOT THIS. COYLE KNOWS THAT BENGALS OFFENSE. WE GOT THE UPPER HAND!!

Fin4,

Nice post at 6:36. Man! The stuff you just throw out there makes my head spin-LOL.

It's way to early for me to think about any specifics coming up in Free Agency and the Draft. I do think that in Free Agency they'll look to resign our own and then just target TWO free agents. One for the O and one for the D.

I do agree though, that WR should be addressed first in free agency and for two main reasons.

1. I think you said it earlier. I don't want a Rookie to come in and us have to wait or limit the playbook for him to get up to speed. If there's a younger VET WR at the right price get him.

2. The simple and well reknown fact: I don't like drafting WR's in the first round.

The main thing though, at this point, is the way this team is coming together. We've solidified a lot of the roster very quickly. Meaning, in my opinion, we can just go after the BEST PLAYMAKER(S) AVAILABLE!

We're getting so close now, I don't think we'll put much emphsis on needs at all. Just straight up PLAYMAKERS!

fin4life
I hope it's not JI picking the free agents next off season, I hope it's someone else or just Philbin Sherman Coyle combine, not JI. The PHINS haven't hit on a F/A since Richy and Starks. And those two wasn't JI who pick them!

Fin4life,
I agree Talib is a talent but he also has alot of baggage. He may be 1 strike away from a ban of some sort. I just don't think he is worth the risk and doubt the Fins will throw big money at a guy with the personal issues.

Why is Naanee still on the team? Put Marlon Moore in.

If Hartline can be the #1 receiver in the NFL in this offense just think what a true stud like Bowe could do. Hartline just got a big payday whether it be for the Fins or someone else. He probably just made 10 million dollars on that game over the lifetime of his next contract. Think Garcon or Laurent Robinson here.

Ray,
Bengals will be tough. Smith has to deal with AJ Green, Linebackers have to deal with Daulton run threat and Gresham, and I worry about their slot guy Hawkins. He may eat our secondary for lunch. Good news is their secondary is very banged up. We may take some revenge on Crocker! Hopefully Hall is still on the sidelines.

CUBEN MENECE, THE GREAT ODIN,FIN$LFE ON BLOG AT THER SAME TIME.
THEYRE GOING TO TEACH SOME OF THE BROWN DONKYS ON HERE WHAT I HOPE THE GARAGE MACHANIC IS LISTENING, THEY BRING THE TEAM FROM THWE CELLAr to 3rd place.

fin4life
I hope it's not JI picking the free agents next off season, I hope it's someone else or just Philbin Sherman Coyle combine, not JI. The PHINS haven't hit on a F/A since Richy and Starks. And those two wasn't JI who pick them!

ray | October 01, 2012 at 07:20 PM

I don't believe for a minute that Tannehill was a call we make with the 2011 Coaching staff in place. After watching JI's attitude in HARDKNOCKS about keeping Gates (he wanted to keep him around longer) then see the call Philbin makes with the UHH HUHH he gives Ireland before axing him it tends to give you the feeling this is not a one man show. Even though were 1-3 I like the way we came out of the gates this Yr. another thing people is we've cut down drastically on false starts. This was an undisciplined bunch playing prehistoric ball under Sparano who by the way had the Wild Cat forced fed to him yesterday by the 49ers and Colin Keaperneck whom a few on here liked in his draft.

I don't know man. We've been burned so many times before so I won't make any predictions. I will just say I am very happy about Tannehills progress up until now.
You HAVE to love the fact that any time someone calls him out for something he comes back the following week and seems to have it fixed already. Promising,

promising, promising.
Posted by: Phins78 | October 01, 2012 at 06:42 PM

All I'll say to this is:

Amen........and AMEN-lol!

Jake in Pa | October 01, 2012 at 07:33 PM

You and me both on their slot guy Hawkins the guy really looks like he's a virtual reality video game, amazing player!

No doubt about Tannehill. His critics are hiding. They will be hiding for years I hope. Yesterday was a great sign of things to come!

promising, promising.
Posted by: Phins78 | October 01, 2012 at 06:42 PM

All I'll say to this is:

Amen........and AMEN-lol!
odinseye | October 01, 2012 at 07:34 PM

Preaching to the Choir on that one Bruda! We've been burned so much even when it goes good you wait for the roof to cave in on our heads but am coming around as well to bluer skies in the future. I especially liked how Tannehill didn't shy away from going P.Peterson's way which he did plenty yesterday, alot of poise out of this kid and is really smart.

On the play where the lb kills T-Hill?

It looked like it was going to be a draw. Lane missed on his block. Pounce and cognito were just making a running lane! If lane makes his block that's a 10yd gain not a 4yd loss.

Also, on the play when they fake the fb and throw it out for Reggie. It was bad execution not bad design. If the toss would've been on point we are talking Reggie and a lb 1 on 1 in space. He breaks that and it's off to the races. But Reggie doesn't reset before the play and T-Hill throws a duck at him. 8 in the box and u fake inside! The outside was wide open.

And to nail this point home. It wasn't the play calling!

WE CAN'T STOP ANYBODY ON 3RD DOWN!!

That falls on the LB's and FS! We let opponents complete to many short passes!

The only thing Arizona has on us!

Think about it! P.Peterson and their CB's got torched! A.Wilson and those LB's saved the day!

Any of those 15 play drives Arizona has! We stop them on 3rd down and it's 3 & out not 14 points. We only got bombed once all game. And on that drive if we stop them on 3rd down once! They are not throwing that pass!

We only stopped one team on 3rd down the raiders! They went 1-12 and look how that game turned out!

The cardinals didn't convert 1 3rd down in the 1st half and converted 4 in the 2nd and were 2-2 on 4th down!

OUR LB'S LET TO MANY PASSES COMPLETED IN THAT 5-15 Yard AREA. U KNOW ENOUGH FOR A 1st! Our cb's are OK at least they aren't getting burned for Td's as often the last couple years.

But the LB's have to go.

Had a dream that Naanee and Armstrong were cut and Gaffney was signed to be our 3rd and Fuller was promoted to the active roster. I hope it's reality.

Tannehill is gonna be good cause he doesn't get rattled. I thought it would be over when Cardinals went up a point, but he fought on and hit Hartline with that bomb. Very satisfying to see him come back like that. Been too many years since a Fin QB has battled like that.

Posted by: Jake in Pa | October 01, 2012 at 06:55 PM

Posts don't have to be long winded to great. Nice one Jake!

I mentioned it last night. One of the most encouraging things I've seen with Tannehill is the calmness in the pocket and how he keeps his eyes downfield.

From week 1 till now, major improvement. No Deer in the Headlights here at all. You can tell he's still having to think to much, but the progress, or I should say, the SPEED of his progress is insane.

He almost appeared Brady like in regards to his Calmness in the pocket......at times.

I think we should get rid of salguero an keep carpenter

Unfortunately we need to get young on the oline and our LBS.

Agree totally Dashi,
Our linebackers just are awful in coverage and Clemons is the biggest liability we have. Coyle needs to fix this. Hell, he had a great D last year with Crocker as his FS.

bk,

We need to get young on the OLine? Are you kidding fella? How about Long, Pouncey, Jerry, and Martin? Are you saying they're old or something? Somebody's not paying attention.

Here is a prediction on Tannehill, in about three more years he will be the top QB in the AFC east, Brady will be too old and already Tannehill has way more potential than Sanchez and Fitzpatrick.

there are a lot of people hating on the kid but you can tell he IS IMPROVING, HE ALSO HAS GREAT INTANGIBLES ,the future is bright guys...

Thanks Odin,
I think we have been on the same page with Tannehill since day one. He is hope for us older guys and a talent we haven't seen in so long. This guy is the real deal. i just wish everyone could see it.

BK, The O-line is not the problem, The Secondary on the other hand has room for improvement.

Great list fin4life.

Thanks Jake.

We should resign our top Fa's and then get 1 top flight Wr and cb in free agency. Looks like that's how it will shape up.

Then go LB, FS, LB with the 1st 3 picks! After that BPA!

On the DE thing? Dashi will wait. OV and Shelby are rookies and misi can play DE! The DE rotation is just young. Remember what golden told Ireland! He was getting 2 guys that next year could be 1st rd picks!

Right on FZB... Hopefully he brings the yearly passing yardage record back to Miami where it belongs!

FP4FGs,

I think bk is smoking some funny stuff tonight. The OL has been ooutstanding so far this year.

Heck, is it really you Guys here? I remember most in this Blog being against Tannehill being picked at #8. Were you People wrong?

Graig M, A man has to have a Hobbie.

Most everybody here was also questioning the drafting of Jonathan Martin by Ireland and the play of John Jerry. Now, everything is beautiful with the OL. Were you wrong there too?

Thanks Craig,

Dashi was going to answer BK. But Felt he was just trolling. A OLD O-LINE!

U know get rid of Jake at the End of the Season? Get off the Smack Buddy!

We have the Best O-line the fins have had since the 70's!!!

Look at the time T-Sizzle has to throw!!

Jake missed 1 cut Block, Then Was Dominant The rest of the Game! These are the Same Clowns that say the Fins shouldn't have drafted Martin and Now want him Replacing Jake!

Philbin fixed the O-line!!! That is Shermans O-Line Coach from Texas A&M!!

And Again Sherman is an Offensive Genius. Just don't tell him to build u a D. Good thing Philbin didn't hire nobody from A&M Defense and just got the Offensive Coaches!

Philbin must know this from his pal Sherman so he brought his pal Coyle to run the Defense!

I dont believe you can blame it on your kicker for missing a 51 yarder. No game should come down to one kick. With the play calling that i sall you should blame the coaches..Im kinda curious about something. We play 47 mints ine way but the last 13 mints we go into prevent defs and loose every time. Why???

Armando, please stop criticizing Sherman's playcalling. Guy knows a little more about football than you. If you're still in need of an explanation please look at the tape from GB vs NO: Packers are up by 1 facing a 3rd & 2 from midfield. What do they do? You guessed it, pass and win the game. That conservative BS from a Sparano is not what Philbin & Co are about. They play to win games.

Missed in my last post that Packers faced their 3rd down at the 2 min warning with game on the line

On the play where the lb kills T-Hill?

It looked like it was going to be a draw. Lane missed on his block. Pounce and cognito were just making a running lane! If lane makes his block that's a 10yd gain not a 4yd loss.

Also, on the play when they fake the fb and throw it out for Reggie. It was bad execution not bad design. If the toss would've been on point we are talking Reggie and a lb 1 on 1 in space. He breaks that and it's off to the races. But Reggie doesn't reset before the play and T-Hill throws a duck at him. 8 in the box and u fake inside! The outside was wide open.

Dashi | October 01, 2012 at 07:43 PM


Dashi,

I agree that Pouncey and Incognito seemed to be run blocking on the play in question. In the replay Cogs is pulling the LDE left with Pouncey & Jerry pulling the DT to their right but watch it again Bush never really makes a move seems in pass protect mode, he couldn't even locate the fumble and was behind Tannehill who appears trying to roll to his right when the LB came free, Lane in honesty looks lost all together and reacts slow. There seems to be mass miss-communication on the play and Pouncey should have called out the blitz pick up on the line regardless. All that said we played much better but I'd make you a money bet the OL had the wrong play call given Tannehill as the QB knew what he was going to be doing although you wonder if throwing why he didn't go into the gun.

Oscar,

U urself were the one with T-Hill, Martin, and JJ Suck!!

Admit it Dashi was Right! Dashi knows U won't but thats ok!

U STILL HAVE MATT MOORE!!! Hows that going Oscar!

Another guy that is a free agent is Jennings from Packets. But injury prone. Only if he is cheap.

Craig M,

How does it feel now being a staunch Ireland supporter?

I think I even messed with you a few times on it back when I was totally down on him.

A couple of things have led me to think a reprieve is in order. Ireland did so-so and landed Pouncey. And then this years class I really like.

But I believe a couple of the most overlooked aspects of Ireland solo tenure is this:

1. He cleaned up the salary cap mess that Parcells had a major role in creating.

2. He's actually stockpiled some picks. Not just late rounders either. This could be/should be Freaking Huge Man-lol!

And maybe just as importantly, a third point is how well he's apparently been able to work with Philbin and Co.

I'm not sold on Ireland just yet. But like I posted last night, in light of recent developments, I'm willing to ride one more year.

To Koyle, prevent defense sucks and it probably cost us a game.

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