|Wake had 2.5 sacks on Sunday. (Photo: Cleveland.com)|
It was business as usual for Cameron Wake, who finished with 2.5 sacks on Sunday while Randy Starks seemed to put any issues he may have had with the organization aside to record a sack and a half of his own. On the interior with Starks, Paul Soliai showed that he was more than just a run-stuffer as Soliai batted down two passes and drew plenty of attention to open things up for other pass rushers.
While Olivier Vernon and the versatile Jared Odrick combined for just one tackle, the combo spent much of the day in the Cleveland backfield. Also getting in on the sack action was defensive end Derrick Shelby, who entered the preseason far from a lock to make the team. Shelby finished the day with a sack and a forced fumble which he nearly ripped from the hands of Weeden.
Although the final sack of the day for Miami was marred by a 15-yard facemask penalty which gave Cleveland a first down, it may have been the most encouraging. Rookie and third overall pick Dion Jordan, who had his preseason reps limited due to injury, corralled Weeden on a speed rush for his first career sack with roughly two minutes to play.
While Miami allowed 289 yards passing to Weeden, it came with a completion rate of less than 50 percent (26-for-53). The Dolphins' defensive front was also largely responsible for holding the Browns' talented second-year back Trent Richardson to a pedestrian 47 yards rushing on 13 carries with just 14 yards coming after halftime.
While Sunday was not a perfect day for the Dolphins, their record after one game is. Miami erased a 7-6 halftime deficit to outscore Cleveland 17-3 in the second half with the front four looking even better than advertised. It won't easy to record six sacks every week for Miami, but with the depth and talent that was on display on Sunday, the Dolphins look to be frequent visitors to opposing backfields. With so much depth and versatility as well, this won't be any team to pound away at late in games either.
Mike Ferguson is a staff writer at Dolphin Shout and the founder and editor of Outside the Redzone. Like Outside the Redzone on Facebook! Also, follow Mike on Twitter @MikeWFerguson.