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A Few Thoughts About the Dolphins Game, in no particular order

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© Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports


Well, if you're going to post angry, go big or go home. If you are on team "we were injured," feel free to stop reading now. This game was embarrassing in all aspects of the game and, even beyond, to the NFL. 

1 - Everyone else

This whole week has been about the players we don't have on the field, yet it was the guys who stayed healthy that made some of the most significant impacts on the game. In a game of "what if's," there were countless plays you could point to that could have sent this game in a different direction. Milano with an inexcusable dropped pick 6, Josh with at least four passes that should have been easily intercepted, multiple plays with lost yardage, plays due to bad snaps, Brown getting just abused at RT until he also leaves the game sick, Bass, with a short FG miss that could have been the game-winner, and again Allen missing a wide open McKenzie for a touchdown. 

2 - Inevitable

If there were one thing that kept me up at night going into this game, it was fear of miscommunication and gap integrity between the safeties and corners. In a game where the Bills did a great job of limiting Tua, Waddle, and Hill, they folded when it counted the most, giving up an inexcusable 3rd and 22 to the Bills' goal line. Without that play, of all of them, the Dolphins' stat line is pedestrian, and they pull off a miracle defensive performance.



© Rich Storry-USA TODAY Sports

3 - Safety

I don't know enough about all of the medical protocols or options for teams in a game like this, but you really have to question the NFL after this game. How Tua was able to clear concussion protocol so quickly makes absolutely no sense. I haven't seen a QB stagger off the field like that since Joe Montana with the Chiefs against the Bills in the playoffs. I don't care how well he passed tests in the locker room; there's no way he should have been allowed to play. To be clear, this has nothing to do with the Bills losing, and I don't think Tua beat us on any level. Between that, the number of play stoppages for dehydration, cramping, and the number of players who left the game early, something needs to be done differently.


Come and take a walk on the wild side
Let me kiss you hard in the pouring rain
You like your girls insane ("Louder!", "Alright")
So choose your last words, this is the last time
'Cause you and I—we were born to die


5 - Allen

You are either a stat person, or you aren't, and for this game, I don't care about Josh's stats. He lost this game for us on offense, and I think he would tell you the same thing. Josh's accuracy on crossing routes was poor, throwing multiple passes behind the receivers. He threw at least four passes that easily should have been picked off, plus the miss to a wide-open McKenzie last goal line drive. While he overcame it, the PF call to lose 15 yards was inexcusable. Josh was clearly rattled in the second half and started to press too much. Maybe it was the heat, frustration of some terrible snaps, or playing with only three active receivers at times, but Josh needs to be better than this.


© Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

6 - Play calling

I have to hand it to the Dolphins as they had a very good game plan for our offense and did enough to keep the Bills' offense at bay. Again, you can look at stats all you want, but Diggs was relatively shut down in this game after the first quarter. Howard left the game for a while, and Diggs still couldn't do anything. Davis was also quiet as we heard Gilly's name more than his. As for the Bills, they continue to collapse on short-yardage plays, can't run to save their life, and flirted with turnovers a lot. Nothing ever felt fluid for the Bills on offense or defense in a game that's almost impossible to describe to someone who didn't watch it.

7 - Motor

I understand that Moss had a big run in this game. But beyond that, Motor was the only back doing anything on the field, and it's been this way through three games. Additionally, the running plays on the RPO or out of the shotgun were some of the slowest developing plays I've ever seen. You would think the offense was running in quicksand and showed no push or burst up front. And before you point to the loss of the entire right side of our line, this was before those injuries and were runs to the left side. I know we are a passing team, but this is inexcusable.

8 - McKenzie

If there were one shining light on offense, it might have been that we finally saw a McKenzie jet sweep in this game. McKenzie used his speed on quite a few plays to pick up nice chunks of yards, to the point that makes you wonder why he hasn't been used more up until now. His 20+ yard catch was a beautiful touch pass by Josh, but an equally great catch by McK. I also want to know why McK wasn't returned the free kick after the safety. Was that because it was still a punt, in theory?


© Rich Storry-USA TODAY Sports

9 - Special teams

Between the Bass missed FG, being pinned inside our 20 a few times, and Crowder not even getting back to the 25 after the safety, the special teams were another group who found a way not to show up in this game. Absolutely horrendous job by the unit that was healthy coming into the game.

10 - Bye Week

I'll be honest, I don't know what to expect through the next three weeks. You can find some solace in how the defense held Waddle and Hill down, but I'm not one willing to crown the Dolphins as a top-tier team yet. Going into Baltimore next week is going to be brutal, and then we still have the Chiefs after that. I know it's early, and thankfully we get to play the Dolphins again. But we may very well need the tiebreakers for the Ravens and Chiefs, so it sucks to have these games coming up when we aren't even 50% healthy. Out of everything, I just hate having a season be defined by injuries, and that's exactly what this season is shaping up to be.
For those looking for more about the game, my apologies. I'm not going to cool down from this game for a long time. I can handle a loss and was expecting one. But to lose like this is just pathetic to me. The Dolphins were better prepared, had more energy, and played harder. Lose, but don't get beat in those three phases. That's on McD. in those three phases.  That's on McD.


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