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Four solutions for a struggling running game: (Titans D is one)

The Tennessee Titans are 30th in the NFL against the run. They are a dam with a lot of leaks, folks.

So it stands to reason that this week presents a wonderful opportunity for the Dolphins to get their limping running game -- which hasn't really stepped up recently after a fast start -- to get going again.

If the Dolphins cannot run up the yardage against the Titans, I would not expect them to do so against teams such as San Francisco (No. 5 against the run) or New England (No. 7) later this year. I would say that the first few games were something of a mirage and the truth is Miami's running game is mediocre.

But no one wants to come to that conclusion, least of all the Dolphins, so my understanding is the game plan is to run as much as Mike Sherman's pass-first orientation will allow. And my understanding is also that nothing much is expected to change with the Dolphins attack in that Reggie Bush is expected to get most of the carries and Daniel Thomas will get the rest.

So allow me to give three suggestions to improve the Miami running game -- not only this game but beyond.

1. Ask Ryan Tannehill to run more. Yes, Tannehill is just returning to health after being hobbled by a knee injury last week. But he is healthy. He is athletic, as the fact he played receiver in college proves. And he is fairly big and strong and fast (4.6s in the 40). Use that athleticism! Andrew Luck scored two rushing TDs last night. Robert Griffin III has an 80-yard run this year.

Coaches should make it plain to Tannehill that it is OK to run as long as the run finishes out of bounds or with a slide. Tannehill has not taken advantage of his running skills this year. He's run only 19 times for 24 yards (1.9 yard per rush average). It would be demoralizing to the defense to see the QB pick up first downs rushing the ball.

2. More Lamar Miller, please. I know that Miller isn't getting more playing time because the club is concerned about his blitz pickup and overall pass protection. He's also not 100 percent on his playbook.

But can't the Dolphins find three plays Miller knows and don't involve passing and put the kid in and let him explode? Miller was a 60-yard run waiting to happen in college. He leads all Miami runners with a 5.5 yard per carry average on 24 totes this year. He's explosive. He's a weapon. Give him a chance!

3. Throw in some Wildcat plays at people. Yeah, I know, I'm crazy. The Wildcat is very 2008. Nobody really runs it a ton anymore. But remember that Wildcat's purpose -- aside from surprising the opponent -- is to win a battle of numbers.

Simply, the Wildcat scheme puts as many blockers as defenders into the running play. It puts one more blocker into the play than the conventional running play. That's been one of the Dolphins' problem lately. Teams are stacking the tackle box with eight defenders to outnumber Miami at the line of scrimmage.

OK, then. Raise the stakes! Add a blocker. Let Reggie Bush run away from or Daniel Thomas run over somebody. Yes, it would put Tannehill at receiver for a play. Guess what? He's played WR in college. And as surprises go, this would be one, at least for a down or two.

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Although one of my grandparents was from Barcelona, where the descendants(sons, daughter maybe) of Jesus of Nazareth(Emmanuel as he was actually called) supposedly gathered, that is NOT Galicia, Dashi. Far from it are We.

When the financial collapse happens is when antichrist (Satan playing the role of the false messiah) will step in and Heal the deadly wound, he will claim to be jesus, come to rapture the church out of here. There is no mention of the word rapture in the bible! the rapture is a LIE, Satan will deceive the whole world into believing that he is savior; will he deceive you? the false one comes first at the 666 6th trump. 6th vile. and 6th seal, Our true Lord and Savior "Jesus" does Not appear on earth until after a (5) five month rein of the antichrist, and not until then! So when antichrist comes he will not be some ugly horned monster in red longjohns and a pitch fork, he will be beautiful and will look and talk like jesus, and his message will be "Peace, Peace" but it's a false peace. Much Love to all my fellow Dol-Fans. P.S. Tell our Heavenly Father how much you love him, and thank him for his Word, The Bible, it's the only truth out there!!!

The problem with the run game is that we don't have a dominate WR to keep the safeties honest...As much of a knucklehead that Brandan marshall was he forced teams to respect the entire field and not creep up to the box.

U can't be of Italian descent! Macanosa!

It's a Insult to all of us of real Italian Descent!

But u were quick to deny the gallego allegations! LOL!

So, Is Mando? Of Gallego Descent? Good Question to ask. But he might get offended. Ur going to have to ask him that Oscar.

And Tim are U going to talk football! Or DO U STILL WANT TO SCHOOL US ON THE PRINCIPLE OF COMPOSITIONALITY. BE EASY GRAMMAR GOD!!

NOW WE KNOW WHY U FAILED IN THE NFL! TOO BUSY CORRECTING THE WAY COACHES NAME A PLAY! AND NOT ENOUGH STUDYING OF WHAT IS GOING ON IN THE FIELD OF PLAY!!

Putting Moore at QB and Tanny at WR would improve 2 positions PLUS open up the running game.

I have an idea for the running game. Actually run it more... Last game there was, what 16 carries? With both Thomas and Bush averaging over 4 ypc in a game that they either had the lead or was tied until the end.

Thats why the running game isn't working, they go pass happy. Tannehill is a good QB, but you're asking way too much to ask him to win it daily (with a lack of weapons). Especially with a TE (safety valve) that isn't that reliable.

Andy....

You must seek Buddah,
You must seek Christ,
You must seek therapy...

Has anyone ever seen D Thomas break a tackle?
Me neither.

I'm sorry to tell you, Andy, but the Bible was written by men, great men I believe, but that shi--ed and p--d just like you or I. There is even no evidence at all, that Jesus Christ existed as a Historical personage. Believe me, I have been researching this since 1972.

DC,

Yeah, we can begin passing on 1st down, but here's the present problem. We need more than just Bess and Hartline to be consistent recievers. That's where an emergence of Gaffney plays a very important role. Because if we can only rely on Bess/Hartline to catch passes. Then what happens when they arent open?

Its 40/60 the the other recievers catch the ball, maybe even less. So now its 2nd and 10 and we got to pass again. Now we got to make sure Miller isnt in there because teams will blitz. It's 2nd and 10 and defenses know its 90/10 the play will be a pass.

Or on first down we pass, the defender baits Tannehill to make it look like Bess/Hartline are open, then bam! Pic 6.

The true answer to the bulk of the offensive woes is at least getting Gaffney to become a 3rd wr force, More to become a legit deep threat, and Clay to become far more consistent catching the ball.

Clay only gets thrown the ball 2-3 times a game because its a coin flip he'll catch the ball 1 out of the 3 times he's target. Getting the run game going again will start with Gaffney becoming a force at 3rd wr and Fasano, Moore, Clay becoming more effective getting open and catching the ball.

Common Sense, I hear you, that was beautiful man, But its your choice weather to believe or not. think about it. God Bless.

The bible is like Greek mythology. A myth.

Andy,

We triumphed! Over Satan! Romney Lost! Dang, Doesn't anybody watch the history channel!

Not to go all religious! But put a checklist! On The Anti-Christ! And Romney! And DASHI BETS ROMNEY CHECKS OUT ON 9 of 10 things!

And Oscar don't give Dashi this mularkey that u are somehow related to the Templar's!

And I'm a Direct Descendant of COLUMBUS!! Or Colón! As he is called on the Island!

Believing is one thing, Reality is another, Andy. Take your pick.

Actually a "Half Baked" quote, but ya....

I am assuming your Christian by your poor understanding of christianity.

The 666 reference, was to a Roman emperor. So unless you are talking Zombie appocalypse. You're all good.

Good blog mando. Actually i think the best thing that happened to this blog was when Richard Marshall went on IR. It actually forced you to come up with better topics.

However, the truth of the matter is that the run game is inconsequential in the NFL to a point. You just have to be good enough to keep defenses off balance to win on offense. The best offensive teams are the ones that have a high volume of passing yards with as few turnovers as possible. The truth is the top 10 passing teams in the NFL have a .585 win %. Top ten rushing teams, barely over .500 (.506). So you see being 15th in rush yards is just fine. What we need to improve is the 22nd in pass yards which I expect to happen as Tannehill matures and we add more weapons.

So Sherman's pass first philsophy with the run mingled in just enough is the best philosophy. Stop listening to Mando and his absurd wildcat philosophy and keeping bringing Tannehill along. This is what brought Miami from the dregs of the NFL to respectability and this is what will bring Miami from respectability to contention.

"...I would say that the first few games were something of a mirage and the truth is Miami's running game is mediocre."

Mando,

A mirage??? It's called an injury to Bush & less rushing attempts.

Wildcat? LOL. The Jets look like High School team when they run that. The Dolphins finally have a QB that they want to have on the field at all times. No need to put him on the sideline.

Very good. We believe we can't beat you. For now.(We love challenges).

Thats whats great about this world age we are living in, its YOUR CHOICE, to believe in whatever you want, but just think , look around you all know something is not right in this world, and believe me Religion is the cause of alot of the problems, because most churches don't teach the false messiah comes first, but Gods word (the Bible) does! I have much Love for my Fellow Dol-Fans, and I don't like seeing people being deceived. God Bless The Miami Dolphins and their Fans.

..."Throw in some Wildcat plays at people. Yeah, I know, I'm crazy. The Wildcat is very 2008. Nobody really runs it a ton anymore. But remember that Wildcat's purpose -- aside from surprising the opponent -- is to win a battle of numbers..."


Mando,

I agree with you on Miller whose burst is undeniable BUT running Tannehill more or using the WC??? What planet are you on???

BTW--You're right. You are crazy & your football acumen is severely in question.

Andy, you are correct on one thing.

"look around you all know something is not right in this world, and believe me Religion is the cause of alot of the problems"

The Anti-Christ is already here. He wqs just elected to a second term.

Yeah, I also think Bush is not the same after getting hurt. But I've seen some pretty sloppy blocking too. It all starts with each lineman beating their man. Goes for pass plays too.

Amen to that Common Sense! Amen to that!

Oh! but We are the Chalice(not the Chavez)jejeje

Mando, its official you have lost your mind. So against a team with a horrible run D, you want to take the ball out of RB's hands and have T-Hill run (just when he starts getting a little healthy). How about getting some good run blocking and let the RB's run. Andrew Luck only ran when he had too. There were no designed plays for him to run! Good lord Mando! I want my QB to be a great passer not a part time RB.

oscar,

Haillie Sellessi is a direct decendent of Jesus of Nazareth does that make him the re-incarnt of Jesus Christ

YG, I absolutely agree with you. We need a 3rd WR to step-up, and Gaffney should be able to play that role (he became the #1 with the Skins). He's dropped a couple, but I think that's just rust. They need to get him going earlier, to loosen up the defense, and then the middle of the field should open up. Speaking of that, why do other teams always catch us up the seam with their TE (or slot WR) but we can't seem to do the same (consistently). Ok, I'll answer my own question, because we don't have a consistent TE. But it can't just be that. I don't think we go there enough. That one pass to Reggie last game (or the one before) was PERFECT. Huge gain. We need to take advantage of the middle of the field and stop just throwing to the sidelines.

Yeah, I also think Bush is not the same after getting hurt. But I've seen some pretty sloppy blocking too. It all starts with each lineman beating their man. Goes for pass plays too.

Cocoajoe,

With less attempts it's hard to tell. Just when it appeared both RB's were getting into a rhythm (Bush w/ the beautiful TD run & Thomas with that 20 yard run) Sherman stopped calling their numbers....

Prior to Reggie getting hurt against the Jets we had one of the better running games in the league. With the early departure of reggie in that game Thomas and Miller stepped up to the plate. When given more that a couple of runs Miller has proven he can run. With the Titans D against the run it is a perfect time to get our running game back to where it was. When you run the ball the O line has to be more aggresive to push the D back and open lanes. With Reggie dancing behind the line looking for the holes instead of attacking them has put us behind the 8 ball in the running game. Once you establish a sound running game and the O line is having fun pushing the D line around, the defense usually stacks the line and that opens up the play action, screens and short passes creating more yards after the catch. But run the ball we must. If Reggie is still hurt let Thomas and Miller play with a FB as a blocker against the blitz. Reggie is using up too many running plays without positive yardage and that puts pressure on the passing plays to get that yardage back. Remember the O line has to get into a rhythm constantly back peddling to protect the pocket in passing situations makes them go into a defensive mode rather than a dominating mentality in the running game.

Well when it happens (the collapse) and antichrist healing the one world system, He will promise the world anything they want, if you just worship him. ( the sheep) bahh bahh, so when you see on CNN, or Fox News that jesus the messiah has returned to jerUSAlem, don't believe it he's a fake. Remember when someone offer's you something, Nothing is Free, it could cost you the most important thing you own, your Soul.

Mando, its official you have lost your mind. So against a team with a horrible run D, you want to take the ball out of RB's hands and have T-Hill run (just when he starts getting a little healthy). How about getting some good run blocking and let the RB's run. Andrew Luck only ran when he had too. There were no designed plays for him to run! Good lord Mando! I want my QB to be a great passer not a part time RB.

Mando,

I seriously wonder if he says stuff like that just to get us pissed off. I can't imagine Mando being that insane/stupid.

Sorry that last post from 2:08 was to Dolfinman.

Has any one thought of signing Michelle Obama to shore up our tight end position? She has perfect NFL size. I wonder what her 40 time is?

DC,

Fasano doesnt have the footspeed to consistently get open in the seam(talent). Clay's not consistently catching the ball enough(trust). Obviosly Egnew's not ready to see the playing field field(trust).

There it is in a nutshell.

YG4E:

I'm telling you, the answer at the TE position is currently a sreet free agent. Michelle Obama!! Sign her now!!

Dude when I take the time to offer free lessons I'm typing at 800 words per minute. No time to fix typos. I'm at work, working most of the time.

Marinovich? Where did you land a job? 7-11 slinging slurpees?

OK. One last one.

To truly know God! U have to give up religion. All the great religious leaders! Gave up believing on what they grew up on! I'm not saying don't believe in God! I'm saying they're more than 60,000 ways! To Find God! The Reason we have over 1000 different type of religions! And Only 1 God! So why not believe in 1 god! Instead of 1000's of religion.

Jesus! Didn't start Christianity! It started 300 years after his death! When Constantine! Took The Pagan Religions and Mixed it with The BiggesT Cult at the time!

Again, Learn World History! And U would see Most of the Religions were like Political Movements! And Not Really about God!

Specially the Fairy Tales in the Old Testament! Or The Jewish Bible(Torah). All Political!

The Republicans are the modern day KKK.

Dashi is a pin head and the reason it was a bad idea to legalize marijuana.

Dullfins vs Titans YAWN

Well, I least I gave you a good scare for your $. It's only 2 $ now, you know.

"Ok, I'll answer my own question, because we don't have a consistent TE. But it can't just be that. I don't think we go there enough. That one pass to Reggie last game (or the one before) was PERFECT. Huge gain. We need to take advantage of the middle of the field and stop just throwing to the sidelines."

DC,

With all the passes that get thrown to Bess & Hartline I find it hard to believe that we can't incorporate Fasano or Clay or Bush or Thomas or even Lane more often.

Watching Luck last Sunday & again last night the kid consistently has three or four solid targets that he uses. Wayne, Avery, Hilton, & then Allen.

I don't think most Dolphin fans realize how good Tannehill has played with just two primary targets. I rememember watching Marino do it for stretches with just O.J. McDuffie but Marino is the gold standard for pure-pocket passers. If he were playing in today's NFL he'd throw for 6000 yards in a season. Brees is a great QB & everything but the rule changes on offense have CLEARLY inflated their numbers.

On the one highlight run during the Colts game Bush showed he's now 100%.

A poster hit on the head when he said Bush looks for the homerun every carry.

Also, part of the run problem is we're getting less total offensive plays than our opposition. That means, even though up until last week we were #1 in 3rd down defense, our defense was still spending too many plays on the field.

Against the Colts, we ran 56 offensive plays to like 78 offensive plays for them. Seems even during the 3 game win streak. The opposition offense ran more plays than we did.

Our recieving corps definitely needs to be overall more efficient. Dropped passes and incompletes because recievers arent open kills drives.

Oh goodie!
Can we bring back the FIST PUMP too?!

Go Phins!

Oh hey yesss!

How about the Statue of Liberty play like the 3 stooges?!

Go Phins!

The same people that liked Henne like Tanny.

WHRB's,

The reason Tannehill targets Bess/Hartline so often is until Gaffney truly emerges. they're the only 2 wr's he can count on to both get open and catch the football.

If I were a nfl qb and my granmother played reciever. Just because she got open doesnt neccessarily mean I'll throw her the ball. I know its less than 50/50 she catches the pass.

I know!

Lets get Spanky to pass it to Buckwheat and have Pete the Pup block!

Go Phins!

On the one highlight run during the Colts game Bush showed he's now 100%.

A poster hit on the head when he said Bush looks for the homerun every carry.

Also, part of the run problem is we're getting less total offensive plays than our opposition. That means, even though up until last week we were #1 in 3rd down defense, our defense was still spending too many plays on the field.

Against the Colts, we ran 56 offensive plays to like 78 offensive plays for them. Seems even during the 3 game win streak. The opposition offense ran more plays than we did.

Our recieving corps definitely needs to be overall more efficient. Dropped passes and incompletes because recievers arent open kills drives.

YG,

All excellent points.

As for the receiving (corp/core/???) You can't ask Bess or Hartline to do much more than they have. We need a 3rd guy to step up. You saw how when Gaffney dropped that one pass that could have been the difference between us scoring a TD instead of settling for a FG.

On the flip side we squandered INT opportunities with the dropped INT's. Good teams have to capitalize in critical situations & we didn't do that against the Colts.

WHRB's,

The reason Tannehill targets Bess/Hartline so often is until Gaffney truly emerges. they're the only 2 wr's he can count on to both get open and catch the football.

If I were a nfl qb and my granmother played reciever. Just because she got open doesnt neccessarily mean I'll throw her the ball. I know its less than 50/50 she catches the pass.

YG,

I realize that. Let's try you grandma then.

I think our run game began to suffer about the same time nfl dc's discovered we only had two recievers(Bess/Hartline) that could consistently get open and catch the ball. Just put 8 men on the of scrimmage and double Hartline because Bess has never beaten any defender deep.

I'm telling you, it's not Reggie getting hurt but rather that other Teams are putting 8 on the line against Us. What can we do about that? Anybody? Here?jeje

We Have RB's | November 09, 2012 at 02:07 PM

You have a point but earlier in the year Bush seemed to be busting up thru the line more....line blocking better? And now, more dancing....looking for a non-existent block. Seems to me, hurt players or players that don't want to get hurt again will dance. And maybe that's what it is, he's not wanting to get hurt like A or B gap. Out in the open, he's pretty much fearless. Just looking for answers like everybody else.

The same people that liked Henne like Tanny.

Nathan,

They're called Dolphin fans. Go watch your 'Sanchise' take his team to 3-6 after Seattle beats them down.

Carroll was right--Sanchez wasn't ready for the pros & should have stayed in college. Four years into his career & there are five rookie QB's playing outplaying him this year.

I come from a long line of kings.
Born in Babylonia, raised in Arizona

..So re-watching the game this is what struck me. I don't think that the Colts were the reason we didn't run the ball. In fact we ran it very efficiently in the first half. We just simply went away from it in half 2. Why? I'm not sure.

Watching the second half. Were were definitley more commited to the pass. Plainly put we just did not execute well in half 2. At first reflection I blamed the coaches for a poor gameplan. this still may be true. But after watching the game for a second time. We just did not do well on first down, When we did the gain would be followed by a penalty or a negative play. Pretty much erasing the the few positive gains we had on first down.

We also just didn't run enough plays in half 2. Blame this on the defense, blame it on poor execution. playcalling, or whatever you want. We just did not give oursleves enough opportunities to make plays with the limited snaps we had.

..Still we had the ball with a chnace to win or tie at the end of the game. Not bad if you really think about it. This weeks game should be a w in our favor. I doubr that the Titans have the capapbility to convert third downs like the Colts did. They don't pressure, or cause turnovers in their favor. For us to be a serious team down the road. These are the games we have to win.Bury these guys and get on to Buffalo.

Maybe not the wildcat , but how about lining reggie up at WR and doing some end arounds with miller in the backfield and interchange them doing this would also help the running game and also more screen passes, our offense needs to score more for us to have a chance at the playoffs this year.And yes I said the playoffs we really do have a shot this year they need to get more creative and lastly I like Tannehill and I understand he is a rookie but he kind of kind rattle on that last drive no reason we could not move the ball on that Colts Defense at the end of the game , this is the first time I have seen this from Ryan, Hopefully it will just be once.

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