Monday, August 13, 2012

Low Expectations May Lead to Surprise Season for Dolphins

Photo courtesy of the Sun-Sentinel
Not many Dol-Fans will utter the words "Miami" and "Super Bowl" in the same sentence this season, unless they're seeing the Fins Fight Song of course. But realistically nobody expects the Dolphins to reach the promised land this season and perhaps not even make the playoffs. But these low expectations may only serve as fuel to a team that feels it can prove doubters wrong.

We've all heard about the "BIM" trend that WR Clyde Gates began earlier this year. And we know about Reggie Bush's lofty goal to earn the NFL rushing title in 2012.

But these are just a couple of pieces to a bigger puzzle; a puzzle comprised of players ready to face an uphill battle and deflect the clout of skepticism that looms above them. While there still are many questions surrounding this team, they are entering the 2012 season with a newfound hope to turn things around behind Joe Philbin.

The Quarterback Situation

Photo courtesy of
The biggest concern entering this season is the quarterback battle between David Garrard, Matt Moore and Ryan Tannehill. As of August 10th, Garrard lowered his chances of starting after undergoing arthroscopic knee surgery that will sideline him for 2-4 weeks. That gives Moore an opportunity to reclaim his #1 spot on the depth chart. In all likelihood, he will be Miami's starting QB to start off the season, which should set some of the fans at ease and provide comfort to the offense. After all, Moore deserves a second shot after his solid play last season.

Tannehill has looked good in practices as well as in the Fins' first preseason game (14-of-21, 167 yards & 1 TD). However, Miami's brass has made it clear that it does not want to rush the rookie into the game. Ryan's chances at starting will likely come in the event that Miami has a poor start to the season and/or are out of playoff contention. Not to mention, there's also a possibility that Tannehill doesn't get a shot this season if Garrard or Moore light it up.

Miami Moving Forward 

Dol-Fans may be anxious to have an official starting QB but that decision will definitely be made soon enough. The coaching staff wants to milk every ounce of competition that their QB unit has to offer before making the final decision, and competition is what this game is all about. Don't sweat it. 

Dolphins RB Lamar Miller
What we all can be excited about is Miami's running back core, its promising offensive line and its crop of talented, young receivers. The Dolphins' running game has loads of potential with Bush, Daniel Thomas and Lamar Miller spearheading the ground attack. The addition of Jonathan Martin to the O-Line should bolster Miami's already solid core of Jake Long, Mike Pouncey and Richie Incognito. Lastly, the Fins may not have a stud wide receiver but appear to have plenty of upside in their younger receivers like Gates, Roberto Wallace and Marlon Moore.

As mentioned earlier, we never said it's a Super Bowl year but we shouldn't be surprised if Miami can pull off eight wins or more. Crazier things have happened in the NFL.

An After Thought

Chad Johnson's mugshot
Speaking of expectations, Miami had high hopes for Chad Ochocinco Johnson until he ruined his opportunity with a domestic violence misdemeanor. The Dolphins officially cut Johnson from the roster on Sunday evening and have moved on.

The upside: This shows that the Dolphins mean business and will not condone nonsense. The downside: They'll probably have lower ratings on Hard Knocks now (HBO cant be too happy). Regardless, there are plenty of those young receivers ready to step up in Chad's absence.

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