The very talented Tony Nicoletti sent me this piece to share with the great readers of Dolphin Shout. I know you'll enjoy it:
I keep hearing about the Detroit Lions having the number one ranked defense and this high powered, explosive offense but frankly, I don't see it. Sure they have Megatron, Reggie Bush and a few nice pieces on offense. (Including a top 10 QB in Stafford). But like Green Bay, and San Diego, they rely too heavily on the pass which makes them resort too easily to a one dimensional game plan.
And yes, their defense has allowed the fewest points in the NFL at the half way point of the season. They have also won 3 of their 4 games at home, too. Both of us are coming into the match with a 3 game winning streaks. Miami is a 3 point underdog. But when you investigate a little deeper you see some kinks in their armor.
I mean, look at their defense. They really haven't played any teams with power house offenses. They have only faced two teams that have scored more than 200 points, so far this season. (The Packers and the Saints). For that matter, they have only played 2 teams that have a winning record. (The Bills and Packers, both having a 5 and 3 record). (The Saints are sitting at 4 and 4). They did beat Green Bay and New Orleans, though. Their only losses were at Buffalo and a home game against the Panthers, (A 3 - 5 and 1 team).
Meanwhile, Miami has gone up against 5 teams with a winning record. (The Patriots who are 7 and 2, and the Chargers with their 5 and 4 record). We won both of those contests, convincingly. (The Bills, Chiefs and Packers are all sitting at 5 and 3). They also happen to be the only teams we have lost to. And despite our leaking points and yardage to teams like Buffalo and Kansas City, we held some potent offenses, well in check. Four of our contests involved clubs that have bested 200 points or more. The Dolphins have been steadily climbing the Defensive and Offensive charts.We are number 3 in points allowed now. The defense is 2nd in the league against the pass. (The Lions are 5th).
They haven't teed off against a defense like ours yet, this season. They may be in for a rude awakening. They are efficient in scoring and have relied on their defense to keep them in games. (Doesn't that sound familiar)? They needed to, putting up a meager 162 points. (We are sitting at 211 points, offensively and ranked 9th in the league in scoring and total offense). The Lions are 20th in total offense but have a 9th ranking passing attack.That doesn't sound like that much of a threat. Especially when they have no balance or running game to speak of. They are no where near as talented or formidable as the aerial attack Brady, Rodgers, Cutler or Rivers can lay on you.
I envision this as a defensive struggle, early on. I believe Lazor will adjust and find ways to counter Detroit's defensive strengths and with our balanced attack, we should be able to put up some points. I believe our defense will be able to contain their weak running game and stifle their passing assault. (Rendering Stafford's strong arm to minimal damage against us). We need to execute and win the turn over battle. Home field advantage and crowd noise aside, we stand a good chance of leaving Ford Field victorious, and could well reduce the upstart Lions to what I see as.........paper tigers.