« PFF-Salguero study of Miami over Atlanta | Main | Latest on the injury front (with analysis) »

Dolphins outscoring the AFC East

It was the turn of the century, in the year 2000, when the Dolphins won the AFC East with an 11-5 record. The team had four Pro Bowl players on defense. And on offense the team did something it hasn't done since.

It outscored the New England Patriots.

Since then for a dozen years New England has scored more points than the Dolphins -- until this year.

But right now, today, the Dolphins are averaging 24.7 points per game. The Patriots, an offensive juggernaut for a dozen years since Tom Brady took over at quarterback, are averaging 19.7 points per game.

And indeed the Dolphins are leading the division in scoring.

It might be a new day in the division.

This statistic speaks to the addition of talent the Dolphins got on offense this year. Mike Wallace, Brandon Gibson are helping the passing game.

This statistic speaks to the maturation of talent the Dolphins drafted. Quarterback Ryan Tannehill, tight end Charles Clay, and left tackle Jonathan Martin are playing well.

And, yes, the statistical fact speaks to a talent decline in New England. Aaron Hernandez is in jail. Rob Gronkowski hasn't played a snap. Wes Welker is in Denver. And Danny Amendola is injured, as he perpetually seems to be.

Tom Brady doesn't have the supporting talent he's had in the past. (It's like watching the 1996 Dolphins with Dan Marino and only one worthy wide out, O.J. McDuffie, a possession receiver).

But this statistic is also interesting because while the Patriots have played Tampa Bay and the Bills and the Jets -- none of them playoff teams a year ago -- the Dolphins have played two 2012 playoff qualifiers -- Indianapolis and Atlanta -- in two of their first three games.

Now, I recognize this is a small sample size. The season is still very young.

But I suggest the Miami offense has room to grow. The running game, mostly a non-factor so far, can get better. The combination of Tannehill to Wallace is still not quite comfortable for both players. The pass protection has been poor. Tannehill, while very good so far, could help by not holding the ball so long.

There is great room for improvement in Miami.

By the end of the year 24.7 points per game might be the Dolphins' output on a bad day.

All this is good news for the franchise. The truth is fans who grew up watching and expecting great offense every week when Marino was quarterback have been starved for good offense for nearly a dozen years.

Yes, the defense has often been very good.

But the offense has rarely been any good.

The Dolphins have had to win many 20-17 games in which they score only two TDs. It was unexciting.

This year the Dolphins have scored three touchdowns in two of their three games.

Progress. Perhaps a new day.

Comments

Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

Why is everyone gonna anoint the darn Saints? I am not convinced they have a good Defense. Yay you beat the Cardinals and Bucs, Congratufuqinlations! Rob Ryan is a crappy D-ccordinator. How many teams has he coached for? If you are soooooooo good, why doesnt anyone keep you for more than 2 years?

Why is everyone so scared of the Saints offense? Do you realize they only have 1 really good receiver, the others are not that great. Yes I realize Brees' makes them better. But do you know who makes them worse? Grimes! Say goodbye to half your field Brees. Carroll can match up with the rest of the receivers on their roster.

Sproles and Graham are the 2 people we need to worry about. Lets start with Sproles, he is a homerun hitter, for sure! If the team follows their assignments and plays disciplined and decides to make the tackle, he can be held less than 100 yards total offense.

Graham is absolutely concerneing as our TE coverage has been crappy. But let me ask a few questions.

Do you think we gameplanned for Cameron in Cleveland? Was he someone who had us shaking in our little Dolphin boots?

Did we gameplan for Coby Weener? Did he have us peeing in our little Dolphin uneroos?

Did Tony Gonzales do anything that mattered in the game? the Dolphins were more concerned with Roddy and Julio "Down by the schoolyard" Jones

Tight Ends have scored touchdowns and have caught some balls, but none of their stats really affected the game all that much? let them get their meaningless Stats.

Graham will be our main point of concern in this game and I see him being contained. I think maybe 70 yards and no TD.

If you ya'll wanna be a bunch of Candya$$e$ and say "Its ok if we are 3-1" I aint got time for that!

MY TEAM IS GONE BE 4-0 SON!


R-dubs = Denny Green!

IF YOU WANT TO ANNOINT THEM, THEN ANNOINT THEIR ARSES.

:) the saints are real good. :)

Fire Ross? Even if we were 0-3 I would allow the entire season to play out before casting judgments. But we're undefeated??? How can we be angry with our organization and the moves that our owner right now? He's inserted personnel that have brought a little excitement, hype, and hope to South Florida.

rdubs, preach it... i'm with you ...

Coby Weener, haha

F*** Drew brees and his face tattoo

Guess who's been horrible in red zone offense? NOrleans - 31 in the league. Miami #1 ... if we can match their drives we will be scoring 7s v their 3s...

EFF the Saints....

tell'em Rdubs...

I am just amazed how people are so impressed with this N.O team!! They have scored 7 TDS'S all year. That is not an offensive powerhouse!

THE SAINTS AVERAGE 35 POINTS A GAME AT THE SUPERDOME THE LAST 3 YEARS.

I STILL LIKE OUR CHANCES THOUGH.

I'm just sayin, They are good. Not saying we can't/won't win. But the Sants look good and they are not clicking yet. Much better at home also.

41-27 Saints. Saints run out to a 14-0 or 17-0 lead with the crowd and momentum behind them, then Dolphins play some catch up the rest of the game, maybe cut it to a touchdown in the 3rd quarter, but Brees keeps piling it on late. Saints punt maybe twice the whole game. Tannehill plays well in a loss. Defense needs to pack it in until after the bye week when they get some guys back.

I feel ya Poizen! A lot of people and media are slobbin on New Orleans knob! It is not justified! Not say anyone should be slobbin on our knob either. I am not saying the Saints are garbage though, but they will be on Monday!

Agreed, the Saints have not been that great this season. They beat the Falcons by 6 at home. They then beat the 0-3 Bucs by 2 points on a last second field goal. They then beat up on Arizona at home.

Miami has beat much tougher opponents. As mentioned earlier Brees throwing to Graham and Sproles are their biggest threats. Grimes can lock down Colston.

Their defense is hard for me to put a finger on. They are better than I thought they would be at least so far.

The offense is going to have to win this one for us. I predict Dolphins win 31-24. This is our coming out party for the rest of America.

I'm a fan of what the Dolphins are doing, but I'm a little concerned that this is the team that spanks us. Not sure we have a player that can keep with Graham, and the Saints pass defense appears to be pretty special. Just doesn't look necessarily like a good matchup, especially with 2 of our best defenders likely out.

But we beat the Colts and the Falcons and I was confident about those game either. If we do win this game, then we will probably be a major talking point throughout NFL nation next week ESPECIALLY b/c we'll be on display for fans everywhere Monday night. Huge moment for our team.

13-3

; )

24.7ppg on offense is banging on the door of 25ppg needed to be a legit playoff team. dolfans should savor this.

But, lets talk defense. Defensively, we've played 2 legit 2nd rd playoff offenses(Falcons/Colts). Yet, have yielded a total of 53pts(including Browns). Our points allowed number when considering this is also astounding. As a defense we've allowed 17.7ppg.

Right now, that's nearly 1pt less than the defense allowed playing a lesser schedule of offenses last season. Thus far, this TEAM, and I do mean TEAM, are steadily finding ways to play great together.

I'll take a TEAM of players, over a roster of stars anyday. Exactly why I love our chances of becoming victorious in the "Big Easy" Monday. It won't be easy, but this TEAM has proven, it's great will to persevere.

Pats defense leads AFC East in least points allowed. 34pts or 11.3ppg. Not exciting when considering they have played the Bills, Jets, and Buc offenses in succession.

13-3
; )
Posted by: Bo Jackson | September 25, 2013 at 02:02 PM
the score mon.nite.?
lol

Krillian, no concerns at all with Jimmy Graham. Actually, I welcome Brees to make him their primary weapon. That's less to worry from everyone else on their offense.

Lets not forget, Julio Jones, lit us up for 9 catches 115yds. But, we kept him out of the end zone. Graham should have a big day. No matter how good, many defenses can't stop him.

The number that will concern me most about Graham Monday night, will be the number of times he scores in the end zone. No matter his other numbers, if we hold Graham to 1 or less scoring tds, it will be a perfect recipe for victory.

Remember, Julio Jones had a big day, where it counts most our D shut him out. ZERO tds was the most important number.

Also, I like the red zone matchup coverage of 6'6 Dion Jordan in coverage against 6'8 Jimmy Graham. Jordan's height would force Brees to alter the trajectory of his endzone pass to Graham even more.

Jordan on Graham inside the redzone is a matchup I very welcome to see.

Guys no way we win against the Saints away.. The Defense is too banged up, Brees and Brady are the top QB in the league in my opinion, just look at the Vegas line, Saints favored by 6.5. We lose 30 to 27! God I hope im wrong!

KEEP THE FAITH GUYS.....

Look for a #3 overall pick day from Dion Jordan Monday. I believe he can be effective in redzone coverage of Graham, as well as rushing the passer, and key run game stops.

This will be the game that stuffs sock in mouth of all Dion Jordan trolls.

I Hope the Miami coaches show Dion Jordon John Gruden's comments the night we picked him over and over and over

I like the fact that Tannehill is reading the D, thus causing him to hold the ball. He's waiting for the right moment to fire a pass and willing to take a hit if need be. Smart dude. Tough dude. Good arm. One thing he can do is feel the pressure and drift away or step up while he is waiting. Also, Brady holds the ball a long time as well unless it's one of those bubble screens or something. He does feel the pressure and move in the pocket well but that guy gets a lot of time to throw. Even with the Pats problems at their skill positions, they do a good job of holding, uh, I mean pass blocking.

I never in my wildest dreams thought we'd be 3-0!! I was looking at 1-2 at best and predicting 0-3!! Im eating my crow and loving it!!! Go Dolphins!!!!!

With julio jones I believe our secondary was coached to let him have the small stuff. They were playing for him not to get behind the defense. I believe it was a calculated risk to play off!! I think that is the right way to play him because he is unstoppable

Great article, Mando. It's true - it's been a LONG time since Marino lit up the skies. FINALLY, we have a QB!!! GO FINS!

Wallyfin@1:11 you're correct. Stunts are like blitz's....a good QB/OC will figure it out and burn you

Sam I Am,

My concern is that we don't have a DB large enough to cover him. Wilson's probably our toughest DB, but don't think he's capable and our attempts to use LBs in our 4-3 hybrid sets on passing plays have left us victimized by the TEs.

I like R.Matthews. But to some people we only have 3 legit NFL WRs.

And would want us to run a 2 TE set.

Krillian, it's suicide to have a db cover Graham. The size matchup is to great. We probably have a lb on him and I look to see Dion Jordan cover him some in the redzone.

Jordan is the best size speed matchup we have for Graham on our roster. Don't care about Graham having a big day. Just don't allow scoring tds to become part of it.

Posted by: FIRE ROSS | September 25, 2013 at 11:59 AM

They dominated the browns and CONTROLLED the Colt from the coin toss. Where as they took control from the falcons in thee closing second. Only game the SHOULD have lost was the falcons game. The dolphins earn to other games. The won every game this year and the other team didn't lose those game. Defense isn't as great as I would want it to be but the newer LBs cover much more ground and big play are not happening every where. Ellerbe best game was against the falcon but wheeler played poorly and good vs the colts. Their defense is much better against the pass (isn't the NFL a passing league?)

Sam I AM,

You're agreeing with me I think, but maybe I just communicated my thoughts poorly. The main thing I was trying to emphasize was that we don't have anyone that can cover him, period. The talent of our defense doesn't comply with the TE prototype of both speed and size. We get beat by the TE time and time again and it appears that our LB corps, even with the speculative upgrades, is still struggling.

Some people try to place a larger corner on star TEs. I was merely trying to point out that our team doesn't have any dbs with the size/skillset to make that possible.

In short, I'm concerned about Graham when looking at team matchups.

The Dolphins have scored 8 touchdowns this season all on offense.Seven of those touchdowns were scored in the Red Zone.I have them perfect in the Red Zone 7 Tds out of 7 possessions in the RZ.There are other sites that have the Dolphins 7 out of 8 in the RZ.
IMO they have won the last two games because they took advantage of their 6 pocessions in the RZ, 3 in each game and converted those opportunities into 3TDs in each game,while their opponents didnt take advantage of those opportunities.
In the Cleveland game they had ONE play inside the opposing twenty yard line a 3rd down before they kicked
a field goal after not gaining a first down on that 3rd down play.I dont consider this a Red Zone possession.I consider a Red Zone possession when a team starts a COMPLETE set of downs first and ten anywhere inside their opponents 20 yard line.
I realize that a lot of plays led to a Red Zone possession but for this stat Im only interested in the plays that led to the points the RZ possession.
In the NFL most of the TDs by FAR are originated in the Red Zone.
I also am following takeaways and points off of takeaways.I can tell you that in these 3 statistical categories the Dolphins are winning against the teams they have played for the ENTIRE 3 game season that has been played.

Something to ad to my last at 4:50pm they have been in the RZ as far as my record keeping once at Cleveland 3 times at Indy and 3 times at home against the Falcons.The other RZ down was only one play at Cleveland inside the 20 that they didnt convert and kicked a FG on 4th down.

I'm sure Graham will be double teamed a lot, he's their main weapon. This defense is built to bend, not brake. In today's pass happy NFL with so many really good QB's, you can only play to contain them. Their going to get their 200-300 yards, but keep them out of the end zone and only allow field goals should be the plan. Bend, don't break.

Let the opposing coach do FIST PUMPS!

1. Although Tannehill is athletic and could run like Kapernick, I want him to stay in the pocket and be a pocket passer. If he ever runs it should be 1-2X a game to keep defenses fearful.
2. I would rather Tannehill hold the ball too long and take 4 sacks rather than throw an interception. So far his TD:INT ratio is 2. I hope this continues.
3. Tannehill is a scholar of the game and is getting better game by game. It will be a few years before he reaches full stride. I think there is a good chance that in the end he will surpass RGIII (who will get crippled up as always happens to QB that run) and Kapernick (ditto RGIII) and will be a rival with Luck but with a better team around him.
4. The issues right now are not talent issues, they are coaching issues. We are a really young team - esp on offense - with a lot of newer players. Coaches have to get the young TE up to speed, the OL up to speed and to get Miller to be more consistent (he is great one play then terrible for three).
5. I have great confidence that as the dings heal up, Coyle will be able to coach up our defense to top 5 status by the years end. It will be harder to do it with the offense because so many players are relatively new. But we should be a contender in the playoffs and the following year we will hit our stride as a dominant team.
6. The most worrisome game on the whole schedule is the next one - NO. Brees is an awesome QB with his accuracy, I think he is the best since Marino retired. Graham will really challenge our ability to shut down TE receivers. Should be a great game.

Then why are Pats on top on the standings? No respect! that's why!!!

Beavis, 1st tiebreaker for standings is divisional record. Then head to head. Although we're 3-0, we've yet to play a divisional opponent. The Pats are 2-0 within the division.

So, technically they're 1a and we're 1b, seeing how we've yet to play a divisional opponent 2-0 trumps 0-0.

The Fins have their QB, you can see it, this guy gets it, How about the Patriots 3-0 only because of their soft schedule to start the season, I for one can not wait to see Atlanta kick their asses sunday evening!

New Orleans is an offensive powerhouse...with 70 points. Miami has 74 points. What does that make Miami?

Mando? Mando? We dont need no stinking Mando!

The most impressive thing about the points scored, not pts by defense or special team.

J Graham 10 for 160 and 2 TD's

D Brees 5 TD's

saints 41

dolphins 24

I will be back on Tuesday

« 1 2 3

The comments to this entry are closed.