Thursday night football was absolutely marvelous. I can’t remember the last time the Dolphins went wire-to-wire, trouncing the youngest team in the NFL, 31-13, at TIAA Bank Field in Jacksonville. Fitzpatrick proved that Beard beats Mustache (sorry Cashew, err, Minshew), RB Miles Gaskin once again showed us that he is a rightful starter for this team, and the receiver corps actually showed some distance and made great catches by great passes by the FitzPants. Did you love it?
Sure, we saw the weak spots. It is still a young line on both sides, and although the D-line finally had pressure sacks and key picks in the second half, in the early going they were still trying to get their footing. My biggest concern was the run blocking of the O-line, at times not there, and especially weak in the goal line formations. But you and the Dolphins certainly don’t need to hear that from me, they know what they need to work on to improve and they know the road ahead will be a treacherous one.
I am referring to the upcoming schedule. Miami is back at home Sunday (Oct 4th) hosting the Seattle Seahawks and Russell Wilson. After that, it is a West Coast trip for two consecutive weeks to San Francisco first to play the 49ers and then to Mile High against the Broncos. Both of those stadiums are always bruising to the Dolphins. I still hear that hit that Chris Chambers took in Denver those many years ago, and in my opinion he was always down a notch after that (sorry Chris), but who wouldn’t be?
The two Los Angeles Hard Knocks teams come to town after that, and no rest for the weary as we are back traveling west to Arizona in November. Thankfully, we have a 4-week run with the Jets twice, the Bengals, and a much-needed Bye week in Week 11.
The final four games are brutal. First, home against two scrambling QBs in Patrick Mahones and the Chiefs, and then Cam Newton for a repeat Week 15 encounter. The last two games of the season are in Las Vegas and finally Buffalo in January. Buffalo in January, yikes!
All I can say is that this is a schedule that builds champions. To beat the best you have to play the best. The Dolphins are the second youngest team in the NFL, with a lot of raw talent and a great coaching staff. I’m not sure when Tua Tagovailoa will make his debut, but with a schedule like this I’m hoping that it’s way later than sooner.
So Finatics, buckle up and enjoy the 2020 ride. I’m sure that the analysts will make us an underdog in a lot of these games, but I am hoping for a surprise or two down the road. AND, we must beat the Jets. Twice. And soundly on both. Will Gase even be there by November?
I am going to enjoy watching this team become a TEAM, and bring on 2021 quickly.
Who’s with me?