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Dolphins can't let Pats cramp their style

This is a true story: In the hours before game time on Novemer 15, Dolphins cornerback Sean Smith was feeling a little weary. He didn't feel quite alert enough, quite energized enough to play an NFL football game -- particularly one at night against the Buffalo Bills.

Smith needed a pick-me-up.

The Dolphins cornerback related this to Dolphins teammate Paul Soliai (they both are represented by local agent David Canter) and the mamoth defensive tackle offered a simple solution to the situation. Soliai told Smith to take a 5-hour energy drink.

And Smith did before warmups.

And then he took another after warmups.

And sometime around the third quarter Smith started feeling his body tighten up. And by the fourth quarter he felt paralyzed.

"In that third quarter I felt a little pinch and I said, 'I'm ok, never mind.' But in the fourth quarter it was all over," Smith said. "I talked to the doctor after the game and he asked if I took any energy drinks and I said, 'yeah I took two 5-hours' and he said that was the problem. All the caffiene dried me up and it was cold so I wasn't probably drinking enough water."

Smith left the game with cramps. And his backup Nolan Carroll, who had been benched for struggling with multiple defensive holding and interference calls, had to go back in. And then Carroll was flagged again, costing the Dolphins a first down.

"I actually tried to get back out there for a play and as soon as I got in my stance I locked up," Smith said. "I came right back out.

"I was extremely mad at Paul but there was nothing I could do about. Imagine flexing your led straight for an hour. Flex as hard as you can and then release. My muscles were sore after the game. It was ridiculous."

And I share with you this story because this Sunday when the New England Patriots come to town, the Dolphins can afford no cramping on the field (as they had against Buffalo this year and last year in the season-opener vs. New England). The Dolphins can afford nothing but showing that they are in tip-top shape and ready to play 70-80 plays and play them with little rest between snaps.

The reason?

The Patriots run a no-huddle offense that goes fast, fast, fast. The Patriots also churn first downs like they're butter. While the average team typically snaps 58 offensive plays, the Patriots are averaging nearly 78 plays per game. And they're doing this with little rest time between snaps.

That puts a strain on the defense and its players.

The Dolphins know this and they have been preparing for such a challenge in practice.

"I think the practice environment is where we’re doing the best job to simulate the things they are going to see in the game," coach Joe Philbin said. "That’s really what we’ve been doing. We’re reloading the next skill set of guys that are presenting the look as fast as we can.

"What typically happens in the week is there is somebody holding a card up and everybody is looking and then everybody is breaking. We’re kind of working the next play ahead and getting guys going and using some of our own language on very similar plays so we can get guys up and running and just simulate that pace. I think it’s gone well. We’ve had a couple snafus, but that happens."

So will it work? No idea. But obviously the Dolphins cannot let the Patriots cramp their style.



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Omelet is Oscar hehe


When people don't understand something, they try to project it into something they can understand, without realizing they are only fooling themselves.

And we all shine on.


You have to hydrate properly, you mofo.

Yes, but I have good memories.

Happiness and Contentment? Lucky You.

Look at BB, he hasn't said one word + or - about Us for Tomorrow's Game. He has some kind of trap laid out for Us. For Sure. We know him.

I hope the Dolphins CB's do not play soft as they have all season. The Patriots will throw short as mentioned in this article but can go deep at times. The problem for the Dolphins is that the Patriots can also run the ball. This is a Great test to see how this secondary has developed. I expect the Patriots to go after Smith who really has trouble with quick receivers due to his big body. The Dolphins have done a good job with their current talent level at the skill positions. However I would expect to see new personnel in the secondary and at the WR positions for next season.

pats will easily score no less than 42 guessing 52-17 sounds rt oh well

promichael, don't hold your breathe bro. 11 games in, the team is what it is. What in the previous 11 games gives you the impression the DBs won't get abused today? Absolutely nothing. The only games they've played well were games where the front 7 got pressure on the QB (or vs. run first teams). Plus they haven't seen a Brady tier QB all year (and have gotten abused by just above average QBs.

Only chance we have is not to play conservatively. We need to create more plays for the offense. That means going for it on 4th down. Fake punts. Special teams needs to come up big today, at least 1 TD. Takeaways from somewhere (ST or defense). We need to use every trick in the book. Stun them. Otherwise, it'll be just like most other game we've played vs. Pats last few years, a loss.

DC Dolfan says:

What in the previous 11 games gives you the impression the DBs won't get abused today?

DC Dolfan, read my post again. I am stating that the Dolphins can not play soft or conservatively as you mentioned. I do not state that the DB's will not get abused. They will especially Smith who I mentioned in my post. He can not stay with the quick receivers the Patriots have. They create separation which is what the current receivers for the Dolphins have not done. I did see some different routes and separation from the Dolphins receivers against Seahawks and as a fan I hope that continues.

Oh boy it's game day don't know if its good or bad remember we play to win the game

Sack Brady hit Brady watch Brady fall Go Dolphins It's our day!,,,,!,

The Miami Dolphins have no chance.

promichael, I wasn't contesting your post, I was unfortunately agreeing with your worst fears. With that said, I put a greater probability of us beating NE than us beating Houston.

I've never been to Boston or traveled much but have filled my mouth with New York Jets chowda and loved it.

So the corner back played bad because he drank an over the counter energy drink consumed by millions every day?

Seems like the corner back has some credibility issues and lack of character blaming a small can of Gatorade or the like.

This week maybe the corner back will say he played bad because of the nectarine he ate.

or his mashed potatoes were too lumpy at lunch time.

Okay, we get it now.

Game Day....Even though I expect a complete Sh-t Show from the Fins today, I can't help but get excited for the game. The way I see it if we win then fantastic, if we lose it will likely expose more of the same issues we know exist and that should leave to big moves offseason.

Getting rid of our weak CB's, needing a dominant receiver, needing a new S, and needing LB's who can cover.

I hope they win...I truly do.

But if they don't then I hope these consistent weaknesses continue to get exposed so it continues to be painfully obvious what needs to get done once the season is over.

3 reasons why the Dolphins suck

5 hour energy drink

orange juice


all bad and are to blame for everything

otherwise the Dolphins would have won ever SuperBowl

jpao, win or lose, that change you've alluded to will come. We have plenty of players who will be FA's after the Season, and I don't see us re-signing a few to many of them. Some I agree, some I'm not sure about. I think Bush, Starks probably won't be back (I agree with Bush, though he's a good player, he might the easiest to replace with Miller. Not sure about Starks, but we have a lot of dline players so he might not be missed, however, I think he's more important to the stoutness of our defense than his stats may show). Long will probably be franchised, and I guess that's the right thing to do (we have so many other holes we need to fill immediately, timing says we shouldn't create another big one AGAIN with the oline). Same probably with Smith. We already need 1 CB, AND a S. It's just not realistic to think with everything else we need that we'll get rid of our ONE CB who isn't an embarrassment. Hartline will be tricky. He's CERTAINLY not worth Jordy Nelson money to me. Yeah, he has good YAC, but 1 TD? That's not something you can't replace if you ask me. But again, since we're DEFINITELY getting a WR this year, I don't know if they want to have to get 2. Plus a TE.

This seems to be the dilemma of a bad team. You have lots of holes to fill, yet every year more holes seem to be created. You just can't do everything at once. And as you continue to not be able to fill holes, you just shoot yourself in the foot, creating mountains that you can never climb.

Great, our game is a nationally televised game (not on Direct TV up here). Now everyone can see our weaknesses for themselves.

I ate a whole pig that's why I fumbled 5 times

Will someone please eat Tom Brady so we can win the game

Maybe we can activate that zombie dude that eats faces

Zombie power

Tannehill questionable for drinking two 8 0z glasses of skim milk

I hope someone eats some courage

Jeff Ireland - the Dolphin killer

LOL @ Dolphins report

This is the Dolphins playoffs?? How pathetic.

Why you say we have no chance, you obscure fukk? Better say we have little chance.

The stars seem to be aligning for Miami. I'm hearing its a hot day there and Gronkowski's out. Miami 27 NE 20.

There's a reason why they play the games on the field. Sure the Pats are favored but if we play well we can make it a long day for Brady and Billicheat.

Cant see the Pats being too motivated for the Dolphins either.

Monte, it's a division game. Both teams will be highly motivated. Just like the Raiders are when they play the Chiefs. Just like the Rams are when they play Seattle. Division games are always the most important and passionate games, because teams know each other well.

actually, Mando, I think its going to be New England who'll be cramping the Dolphins style. The Dolphins should have waited one more year to get their franchise QB.

DC, yeah its a division game but the Pats already have the division locked up. They can afford to lose this game and still coast. Cant see them taking us as a serious threat and being too motivated. They have bigger fish to fry. Thats why they're very vulnerable to the upset.

"The Pats have bigger fish to fry"


The Phins have little to lose today and need to play the spoiler. Need to put some hot sauce on Brady and throw the kitchen sink at the him and see how he reacts. We can't let that guy play his game and pick us apart.

Thanks for the great post on your blog, it really gives me an insight on this topic.

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