Tag Archives: Dolphins

Solid Dolphins Getting Beached by Joe “Queasy Does It” Philbin

11 Nov

The 2014 Miami Dolphins are the 6th highest scoring team in the AFC, just a notch behind the juggernaut Steelers. The Dolphins field the #1 defense in the AFC. So how is it that the Dolphins face Buffalo this Thursday with their playoff hopes most likely hanging in the balance? We have to regretfully place blame on the shoulders of Joe Philbin.

In an alternate universe the Dolphins have been playing to win, and have put away six straight foes. We’re 7-2, and atop the AFC East thanks to our week 1 upset of the Patsies. In that alternate universe we’ve been playing to put games away, instead of handing the ball back to Pro Bowl quarterbacks and crossing our fingers.

Alas, this is the only universe we know. It’s a universe where our coach doesn’t believe in going for the jugular. He plays not to lose, and therefore tends to do so when the going gets tough. It is a universe where we claim Ryan Tannehill is “the guy”, yet don’t trust him to close the door on our opponents. And now it’s a universe where we’re once again in the muddled pile of Wild Card hopefuls we’ve grown so accustomed to over the years.

Detroit faked two punts this weekend, and went for it on a 4th and 6. While our masterful end game was to run Daniel Thomas and Damien Williams into the teeth of the #1 rushing D in football, they closed out the contest by trusting their signal caller, who slung passes on 11 straight plays, ultimately leading them to the end zone. They played to win. They did. They’re in first place.

And until Joe Philbin has some moment of clarity, or DirecTV starts offering Sunday Ticket Alternate Universe, such heights will probably elude us.

GO DOLPHINS, and feel free to follow us on Twitter @TheBottlenose, or our lighter side is available at @VaguelyFunnyDan

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SoFlo Sea Mammals Stock Report as Week 2 Arrives

15 Sep

Dolphins Overall Worth (DOW) after an opening win in the Land of Cleve: 612.6 (+21.5)

RISERS

CAMERON WAKE (NASDAQ: WAKE) +2: What can you really say about Wake now that hasn’t already been said? He’s gone from mortgage broker to one of the NFL’s premiere sack masters.  2 1/2 sacks against the Brownies, as our D piled up six. God help quarterbacks when Jordan gets up to speed on the other side.

DIMITRI PATTERSON (NYSE: DPATT) +3 1/2: For a long while the Dolphins have been a solid defense with a strange takeaway allergy. We may have witnessed the unit stepping into elite territory this past weekend. Two picks for Patterson. It was an impressive day for Dimitri, but we won’t play Brandon Weeden every week.

BRIAN HARTLINE (NYSE: BHART) +4: Mike Wallace earned heckles for his disappearing act against Joe Haden, who is a great corner. Meanwhile, across the line, Brian was snagging 9 catches for 114yds and a TD. Hartline is slippery, dependable, and darned nifty to have around. Defenses can roll over toward Wallace if they want, but there’s a solid receiver opposite him.

TUMBLERS

MIKE WALLACE (NYSE: MWALL) – 1: We’re going to go easy on Mike for now. It was his first game, with the studly Joe Haden locked on him. Not to mention the attention paid to Mike certainly opened things up for Hartline and Gibson to do their thing. Still, Wallace was brought in to make plays, and one catch wasn’t exactly the fireworks show we were hoping for.

LAMAR MILLER (NASDAQ: MILL) – 2 1/4: This was the big unveiling of Lamar as our feature back? 10 touches for 10 yards. He’s got big play potential, but Lamar doesn’t have a knack for getting past the first defender. Our blocking will have to improve if we hope to free Miller for the monster plays he’s capable of.

JONATHAN MARTIN (NYSE: JMART) – 4 1/2: Martin was the fallback option this offseason, and, to be honest, he played like one. He was consistently shoved around by Cleveland defenders, and even when not sacked, Tannehill was on the ground several times thanks to Martin’s suspect pass blocking. This hinders the offense, as either Tanny has less time, is forced to roll right, or loses a target who now has to chip pass rushers on the left side. 

SUMMARY

Nice to start things off with a win, especially considering our brutal first half schedule. Loved almost everything we saw on defense, and we’re saying 50 Hail Marys for our offense. Too much big play potential in Wallace and Miller not to, well, make big plays. The loss of Keller was a pain in the blowhole, and our offense is still trying to find an identity. Four sacks allowed and 0.9 yards on the ground? If our offensive line really is that bad, the Sea Mammals will have a tough time moving the ball this year. Indy looked very mortal in week 1. Let’s hope we expose them further.

GO DOLPHINS, and feel free to follow us on Twitter @thebottlenose

2013 Fantasy Predictions Podcast, Featuring Former Dolphin Anthony Alabi

5 Sep

Recently had the honor of starting Maximum Understanding of Fantasy Football (M.U.F.F.), a podcast based here in L.A., and about to premiere on the Westcast Network. I’ve gotten permission to drop a sneak preview of our 2013 Fantasy Season Predictions episode, featuring former Fin lineman turned fantasy baller Anthony Alabi.

Enjoy at the link below. And FYI, there’ll be plenty more M.U.F.F. coming your way soon.

http://muffpodcast.westcastnetwork.libsynpro.com/m-u-f-f-episode-2-w-anthony-alabi

MUFF Episode 2 Icon copy

Meet New Dolphins Left Tackle, Jonathan Martimsislee

28 Apr

Hmm. Right around the time Jeff Ireland performed last rites on the Branden Albert idea he began hedging his bet, drafting mammoth blocking tight end Dion Sims, along with one of the best pass blocking backs in the draft in Florida’s Mike Gillislee.

We want Jonathan Martin to excel on the left side as much as anybody, but we’re not holding our breath (great analysis of Martin’s performance last season here, by the way (http://www.thephinsider.com/2013/2/4/3901992/miami-dolphins-season-in-review-offensive-line-trench-warfare). Heck, Jeff Ireland was obviously in the market for another player to protect the blind side.

But with the idea of Martin actually starting at that crucial spot becoming more and more of a reality, we made a couple of supplemental moves. Ireland grabbed Dion Sims, considered perhaps the best blocking tight end in the draft. He also imported Florida Gator Mike Gillislee, who in addition to his talent with the ball received rave reviews for his blocking skills from just about every scout and site you can name. Dustin Keller and Lamar Miller have their skill set, but legit ability to slow Demarcus Ware will probably never appear on their resume.

So perhaps we’ll be seeing a fair amount of Dion Sims just to the left of Jonathan Martin. It wouldn’t surprise us to see a whole lot of Gillislee in the backfield too, chipping whatever DEs and LBs are coming around the Martin. Oh, and let’s throw in a lot of Dr. T rolling to his right, just in case the “blind side by committee” falters.

GO DOLPHINS, and feel free to follow us on Twitter @TheBottlenose

The Bottlenose’s 2013 Miami Dolphins Mock Draft

25 Apr

Hell, why not give it a whirl?

PICK #12. We think Tavon’s gonna be history by this pick. We’re also not sold (barring a Milliner tumble) on the corners available here being any better than the guys available in the next round. This pick may boil down to who the Sea Mammals have graded higher, Eifert or Sheldon Richardson. We’ve secured the services of both Randy Starks and Dustin Keller only for 2013, so either a TE or DT will be a need sooner rather than later. We like the TEs available later much more than the DTs. SELECTION: SHELDON RICHARDSON, DT, MISSOURI

PICK #42. Can’t bet the farm on the Grimes signing, which is another one year special Jeff Ireland cooked up. We didn’t go CB in round 1 ’cause we liked the depth later. Time to pull the trigger on a small school kid with big time talent. SELECTION: ROBERT ALFORD, CB, SE LOUISIANA

PICK #54. This pick secures Pro Football Focus’ #7 ranked pass blocker in the NFL last season. #9 ranked in 2011. That’s out of over 70+ linemen they graded. Protecting Tannehill is even more important now that he actually has targets to throw to. Let Martin progress on the right side. He’s not an NFL LT. But KC’s 28-year old malcontent IS. SELECTION: BRANDEN ALBERT, LT, KANSAS CITY

PICK #77. Nice depth at TE this year. Passing up on Eifert left this a need area, not knowing if Keller will be around beyond 2013. Hopefully this kid’s got a little Gronk in him. SELECTION: GAVIN ESCOBAR, TE, SAN DIEGO STATE

PICK#82. Misi doesn’t scare left tackles. We’re not convinced Olivier Vernon scares left tackles. We think this guy will. SELECTION: COREY LEMONIER, DE/OLB, AUBURN

PICK #110. Reggie Bush is chilling on Eight Mile now. Really think Ireland is content with Lamar Miller and Daniel “Two Yards and a Cloud of Dust” Thomas in the backfield? Exaaaactly. SELECTION: MIKE GILLISLEE, RB, FLORIDA

PICK #146. The Dolphins wait to add some wide receiver help, but a remarkably deep class leaves a pretty intriguing prospect still on the board. A possible Bess trade would make this an even smarter move. SELECTION: JOSH BOYCE, WR, TCU

PICK #166 If John Jerry isn’t the guy, then who is? We could see them adding a hard-working, smart, character guy with upside on the interior. Level of competition is suspect, but he’s got the will and the tools to put it all together. SELECTION: OG, J.C. TRETTER, CORNELL

PICK #217 Almost closing time at this point. When a 340lb, SEC battle-tested nose is sitting there you have to take notice. Let’s not forget that Soliai’s contract is up after this season too. Maybe big Paul could show this up and down youngster how consistency works. SELECTION: NT KWAME GEATHERS, GEORGIA

PICK #224 Hard to see why this physical freak isn’t projected to go higher. The Sea Mammals have shown interest, and the addition of a big, fast back like Murray, along with the addition of Lee, could easily send Daniel Thomas packing. SELECTION: LATAVIUS MURRAY, RB, CENTRAL FLORIDA

PICK #250. Why not give a look to the 6’5, 235lb safety prospect who lit up the East West Shrine Game? SELECTION: COOPER TAYLOR, S, RICHMOND

GO DOLPHINS, and feel free to follow us on Twitter @TheBottlenose

Top Ten Reasons to Put Away the Branden Albert “Haterade”

23 Apr

Lots of negative chatter about the SoFlo Sea Mammals’ discussions with the Chiefs regarding Branden Albert. The following list represents our best attempt at quelling this discontent as the draft approaches.

1. The trade hasn’t even happened yet.

2. Albert just turned 28, and Pro Football Focus ranked him as a top ten pass blocker the last two years (#7 last year, #9 in 2011).

3. He’ll cost us a 2nd rounder. Our most recent 2nd rounders? Jonathan Martin, Daniel Thomas, Koa Misi, Pat White, Sean Smith, Samson Satele, Philip Merling, Chad Henne and John Beck. Let’s stop acting like those second rounders are gold.

4. We’ve got TWO second rounders.

5. Jonathan Martin was a big, giant sketchball on the left side. I’m sorry. He was. He fell to the second round because people doubted his ability to lock down the blind side. He didn’t exactly face the defensive hounds of hell in the PAC 12, where 42-38 final scores are the norm.

6. To import Mike Wallace, Dustin Keller and Brandon Gibson (not to mention any additional targets we acquire in the draft) and not give Tanny enough time to get rid of the ball would be a humongous, crying shame.

7. Yes, a contract we give Albert would reflect the importance of having a good left tackle, but it will also be one that’s relatively painless to get out of after two seasons.

8. Jake Long’s last truly good season was 2010. The Rams are betting on him turning back the clock three years, and it’s an expensive gamble. Albert is playing at a high level NOW, and that means something.

9. When Jeff Ireland had to decide on Jake, the “big three” LT prospects hadn’t meteorically risen up the draft board. Things happen on a certain timeline. As things change, you play the cards you’re dealt. That’s what Jeff’s doing.

10. We’d get one less player if we traded up for a LT. Trading up would mean losing a second rounder. Suppose we did jump up. We’re talking about having just Lane Johnson, or having the guy we know is a top 10 pass blocking linemen (out of 70+ eligible players) locked in on the left side AND Tavon Austin, or Dee Milliner, or whatever player might fall to #12. Not to mention the possibility of trading down and adding more picks, and plugging more holes.

In conclusion, we’re not going to cry if we acquire a 28-year old, top ten pass blocker to protect Tannehill’s blind side, and pay him the going rate. Not to mention it’ll lessen the hurt when the trade also allows us to plug two other holes by the end of round 2.

GO DOLPHINS, and feel free to follow us on Twitter @TheBottlenose

Dolphins Must Still Be Bold About Receiving Corps in Draft

13 Apr

Patriots, Broncos, Saints, Redskins, Packers Giants, Falcons.

Those were the seven highest scoring teams in the NFL last year. The significance of that list? With the exception of the Redskins and dual threat Jedi RG3, all of these offenses took the field with at least two beastly receiving targets on the field.

Welker/Gronk. Demaryius/Decker. Graham/Colston. Nelson/Cobb. Nicks/Cruz. Juilo/Roddy/Gonzo.

Left tackle. Cornerback. Pass rushing end. Running back. There are other areas of obvious need for the SoFlo Sea Mammals as the draft nears. But in today’s NFL there is no such thing as too much pass catching talent.

This isn’t a knock on Keller, Bess, Hartline, Gibson, Clay or Matthews. They may all play a key role this season. But we also know now, by and large, what these players are capable of.

So when Jeff Ireland and the boys are on the clock in those first couple of rounds, here’s hoping they remember that there’s been no better time to go “best player available” at WR and TE.

If Tavon Austin is the next Harvin. If Cordy Patterson’s the next Roddy White. If Justin Hunter’s the next A.J. Green. If Zach Ertz is the next Gronkowski…

We’ve got Wallace to open things up. We love the signing, but our work isn’t done. The beastly offenses in this NFL double-down with prime time targets. If we let a star pass catcher slip through our fingers in exchange for a “physical corner” who may get flagged every time they lay a finger on an opposing receiver, or a run-blocking interior or right-side lineman, it would be a shame.

The tea leaves are clear. The NFL wants scoring. The NFL wants passing. As a defense, the only thing scarier than having to deal with Mike Wallace would be having another beast to worry about.

“But if we focus on Mike Wallace then _________________ will make us pay.”

Fill in that blank. Bess? Hartline? Keller (no spring chicken, and he’s on a 1-year deal)? If the “big 3” left tackles are gone. If Milliner hasn’t miraculously fallen. If we haven’t traded up. Or if the right guy sneaks into the second round…

Why not fill in that blank?

GO DOLPHINS, and feel free to follow us on Twitter @TheBottlenose