On the bright side, the Dolphins get to put the stinker they just played to rest quite early this week. They travel to Buffalo on Thursday and get a chance to forget and make you forget the 37-3 loss to Tennessee.
So a Thursday night game is good news.
"In some ways, when you play a game like we just played, it’s the best thing you could ever have happen because, all of a sudden, you have to move forward," offensive coordinator Mike Sherman said. "You can’t sit around and think (about) what just transpired. You have to move forward. So I think it’s a blessing in some ways that way."
On the side of the equation where no light shines, the Dolphins are on the road. And for the road team, a Thursday night game has been bad news lately.
The NFL has played 20 Thursday games dating back to last season. Of those, I am discounting the two Thursday night regular-season openers because for those the teams basically had an entire preseason to prepare for the game and then had another 10 days before the start of the season to get ready.
But in games where teams came off Sunday games and then played again on Thursday the home team has a 13-5 record the past two years.
This season, the home team is 6-3 on Thursday night. But if you look closer, two of those home losses were posted by the Jaguars and Carolina Panthers. And those two teams don't win at home no matter what day of the week you're talking about.
The Panthers are 1-4 at home this year while the Jaguars are 0-5 at home this year. So their inability to cash in on a Thursday night game is well overshadowed by the fact they, um, stink.
Buffalo also stinks but not nearly as much. The Bills are 3-6 this season and have lost three consecutive games. But they're only slightly worse than the Dolphins who are 4-5 and have lost two in a row.
So Buffalo isn't so awful as to not pose a problem for the traveling Dolphins.
Why, you might ask, do traveling teams struggle so much on the road during a short week?
Well, perhaps the fact they have condensed preparation time might have something to do with it. The Dolphins coaching staff left Sunday's game at Sun Life Stadium on a bus and had a police escort as they headed back to their training facility to prepare for Buffalo.
Coaches were at the facility until the wee hours and they struggled with not only their upcoming preparation but the haunting nature of Sunday's loss.
"I don’t know exactly what time we got out of here, but it was (late). It was a long night, put it that way, particularly after the way we played and coached that football game," Sherman said. "It was a long night in relationship to that as well. Dealing with trying to put one game aside and then get ready for the next game, that juxtaposition was difficult to handle at times last night, but we managed."
The Dolphins Monday morning were still finalizing a game plan and as of noon still hadn't gone through the corrections on Sunday's loss with players -- and believe me, lots needed correcting.
The club did not practice Monday. It had a spry walk-thru that was closed to the media. The team will practice Tuesday and then depart Wednesday afternoon for Western New York after another walk-thru.
"We had a good practice today and we move forward and I think that’s the best thing we can do as I told our guys today in my offensive meeting." Sherman said.
One game. One full practice.
Indeed, the Dolphins will spend more time flying to this game than they will spend actually in a full practice.
And you wonder why visiting teams struggle on Thursday night?