Dolphins win

Parker Fox, Editor-in-Chief

With a 35-13 route of the Oakland Raiders, the Miami Dolphins improved to 1-1 on the season and earned Coach Joe Philbin his first NFL victory as a head coach.  That leaves the Dolphins tied for first place in the AFC East, alongside the Patriots and the Jets.  Although the season is young, an early win was huge for this Dolphins team as they try to change the losing culture that has plagued the franchise since the end of the Dan Marino days. 

Rookie QB Ryan Tannehill went 18 for 30 with two touchdowns and no interceptions, receiving an impressive 91.0 rating.  Of the QBs from the 2012 Draft class, Tannehill was labeled “the project.”  Unlike Andrew Luck and Robert Griffin III, Tannehill was listed as a guy that would need a few years before taking charge of a team.  But when David Garrard went down in the pre-season with an injury, that left Matt Moore as Tannehill’s only competition.  Tannehill was able to win the job, but had a rough first outing at Houston, going 20 for 36 with no touchdowns and three interceptions.  Apparently, he learned from his mistakes against Houston and was able to lead his team to victory last Sunday.  Or, quite possibly, the Oakland Raiders are simply an awful football team.

Tannehill played well, but RB Reggie Bush put the team on his back.  Bush, still trying to prove his competence as an every down back, had 26 carries for 172 yards, leading the league in rushing.  He also notched two touchdowns and 25 yards through the air. 

For the Dolphins to have any chance at a playoff run, this type of performance from Bush has to become standard.  Even if Tannehill plays well, he may very well have the worst receiving corps in the game, after the team traded Brandon Marshall to Chicago for a third round pick.  His best option is TE Brian Hartline, hardly a Pro Bowler, who currently leads the team in receiving.  Defensively, the ‘Phins definitely have some talent.  Karlos Dansby and Cameron Wake are two of the better linebackers in the entire NFL, playing behind a solid defensive line.  In the secondary, however, the Dolphins are thin behind CB Sean Smith.  CB Vontae Davis was traded to Indianapolis for a second round pick just before the season began, and CB Nolan Carroll is an obvious downgrade.

Hopefully for Dolfans, the Oakland game wasn’t just a flash in the pan, but a sign of things to come.  If not this season, at least in the coming years.