Miami Dolphins 2015 Schedule

Today's National Football League and the Miami Dolphins kickoff their fiftieth seasons in less than a fortnight. The leagues schedule makers has the Dolphins starting off innocently enough with a two game road stint at teams with a combined 2014 record of 7 - 25. However. They also have Miami playing Seven of their first Nine games away from the affectionately referred to Joe Robbie Stadium and/or Sun Life Stadium.

1)At Washington Redskins (4 - 12), Sunday September 13th, 1 pm EST.
2)At Jacksonville Jaguars (3 - 13), Sunday September 20th, 4 pm.

Miami's first home game opponent is an inner-division rival that's had the Dolphins number of late.

3)Versus Buffalo Bills (9 - 7), Sunday September 27th, 4:25 pm.

The Dolphins follow that inner-division home game with another home game that takes place in London which happens to be located 1,000 miles further from Miami than from where a second inner-division rival resides.

4)Versus New York Jets (4 - 12), Sunday October 4th, (London) 9:30 AM EST.

A Bye takes place after the seasons longest road trip for a home game.

5) Bye

Following what totals out to be a two way airplane excursion of nine thousand miles for a home game and the Bye week, the Dolphins are again in flight toward an AFC opponent.

6)At Tennessee Titans (2 - 14), Sunday October 18th, 1 pm.

Through the seasons first five games the Miami Dolphins have been in the air on eight occasions, and have faced teams with a combined 2014 record of 22 - 58. It's safe to say that despite all of the frequent flier miles gathered thus-far, the Dolphins had better be swimming with the current from the get go because beyond this point of the season is when the real turbulence begins.

Miami's Dolphins come home for what is just their second game of the season at JRS! They will be taking on a team that they have never beaten in seven tries with three of those attempts taking place at JRS.

7)Versus Houston Texans (9 - 7), Sunday October 25th, 1 pm.

Ohhh-Well, after a much deserved second game on their own turf out of six total games. The Miami Dolphins now get to go on a ruthless three game road trip at teams that tabulated a combined 31 - 17 record in 2014. They start out this particular stint on a Thursday Night with only three days rest at a most feared inner-division rival. Miami then follows that up with another road trip to a potentially snow bound inner-division menace which precedes a third straight road game at the frigid tundra of an NFC East power house!

8)At New England (12 - 4), Thursday October 29th, 8:25 pm.
9)At Buffalo Bills (9 - 7), Sunday November 8th, 1 pm.
10)At Philadelphia Eagles (10 - 6), Sunday November 15th, 1 pm.

Wheeww, what a stretch, and now they have an opportunity to host just their third game of the season at JRS, and they get the NFC Eastern Division Champs.

11)Versus Dallas Cowboys (12 - 4), Sunday November 22nd, 1 pm.

Got that home cook'in out of the way, might as well go tug on a snow covered inner-division thorn.

12)At New York Jets (4 - 12), Sunday November 29th, 1 pm.

So, Miami's Dolphins may or may not have survived the seasons first eleven games of which only three were contended from their own familiar turf with a total of four being counted as home games.

With just five games remaining the Dolphins finally get a break (of sorts), and head home to host four of the seasons final five ever important, playoff pursuit match-ups.

"ALL-RIGHT MIAMI", Here We Go Dolphins, Here We Go!
To start off a two game home stand the Dolphins will host an AFC nemesis that holds a seven games to five head to head advantage while beating Miami in five consecutive meetings.

13)Versus Baltimore Ravens (10 - 6), Sunday December 6th, 1 pm.

A Monday Night Match-Up against an NFC East team follows as somewhat of a reprieve.

14)Versus New York Giants (6 - 10), Monday December 14th, 8:30 pm.

The season's second longest 500 MPH roller-coaster ride breaks up Miami's first stretch that included two consecutive home games at JRS! The Dolphins will be flying West to face off against an AFC contender that Miami beat (at JRS) 37 - ZIPPP in 2014.

15)At San Diego Chargers (9 - 7), Sunday December 20th, 4:25 pm.

Miami has two remaining games, and it is just their second two game home stand of the season. To top off a schedule that seemed "innocent enough" to begin with! The (potentially chasing playoffs) Miami Dolphins close the season hosting the AFC's two best quarterbacks and/or teams that participated in 2014's AFC Championship.

16)Versus Indianapolis Colts (11 - 5), Sunday December 27th, 1 pm.

17)Versus New England Patriots (12 - 4), Sunday January 3rd, 1 pm.

It's the perfect storm.
Excluding the AFC East (because Miami has road & home match-ups against) the Divisional opposition of Buffalo, New York, and New England. The 2015 road opponents outside of the division (Redskins, Jaguars, Titans, Eagles, and Chargers) had a combined 2014 record of 28 - 52. The Dolphins will need to win at least four of the above as well as one or more divisional road games.

Meanwhile, Miami's home games (outside of the division) are for the most part against serious playoff contenders in the (Texans, Cowboys, Ravens, Giants, and Colts) who had a 2014 accrued record of 48 - 32. Miami will greatly need the home field advantage in order to win the majority of the games at their own venue which ESPECIALLY includes the 25 - 23 AFC East (BILLS, JETS, AND PATRIOTS)!

It's the perfect storm.
Should The Miami Dolphins happen to make the playoffs?
They will already be playoff worthy,
and a serious force to be reckoned with no-matter the venue!

Were the North-Eastern Based National Football Leagues schedule makers fair to their Southern based Brethren? How do you think the battles amidst the war will play out?

Thank You for an Open-Minded read, and we look forward to your angle of view : )) !!


The Miami Dolphins Must Overcome Injury Bug

The last post was all about the Miami Dolphin glass half-full, but is the glass half-empty? Is the renewed energy surrounding the Dolphins a product of orange-colored glasses? Are folks in glass houses pitching stones? If you haven’t guessed it, the theme of this post is the glassy fragility of the Miami Dolphins.

The Miami offensive line teeters, balancing on a fiber optic tight rope ready for the glass fibers to fray like a knee ligament. Brandon Albert came to Miami with a history of incomplete seasons and that trend continued with a shortened 2014. In the euphoria of the preseason, it is easy to overlook the obvious and ignore Albert’s history of rarely playing 16 games in a season. Jason Fox filled in admirably until the Miami injury plague sidelined Albert’s backup in the second pre-season game.

Starting right guard Billy Turner missed all of last season on IR and starting left guard Dallas Thomas was drafted in need of shoulder surgery two seasons ago. 2014 began without Mike Pouncey for six weeks. Ja'Wuan James must be staying as far away from his line mates as possible to avoid catching the contagion. There is so little depth on the Miami offensive line, even a single injury could lead to disaster.

The Dolphins signed big rangy tight end Cameron Jordan but he arrives with concussion questions and Kenny Stills has missed time with tender legs. All of these problems loom glass-half-empty, taunting Miami fans who want desperately to believe but know the intoxicating whiskey swirls in a cracked tumbler. The possibility of an explosive offense is a shard away from dissolving into the lack of depth on the offensive line and tight end.

Miami fans shook their heads the moment Jamar Taylor limped off the field knowing the secondary could not withstand the loss of another starter. Taylor has yet to shed the injury bug plaguing him since he was drafted injured two years ago. Louis Delmas came to Miami an oft-injured free agent safety and limped off the field in the same condition. Miami fans like to ignore the detached Achilles tendon suffered by Brent Grimes a few short years ago.

The Linebacker crew is led by Koa Misi, who was unable to finish the 2014 season and has yet to play a snap in the 2015 pre-season. Jalani Jenkins and Chris McCain have been steady but their backup Jordan Tripp limped off a week ago and has not returned. Behind them waits, a plethora of undrafted free agent linebackers and Miami’s hopes may soon rest on whether one is a special player overlooked by the entire NFL.

A defense that gave away a 1st and 2nd round picks in the bust named Dion Jordan is as thin as fine crystal. The only real depth on the Dolphin roster is in the defensive line and wide receiver corps. This is the real reason Miami has not sniffed the playoffs since 2008. NFL football is a game of attrition. Teams that draft well and build a deep roster can flourish when the inevitable injuries begin piling up. Miami is not one of them.

When totaled up, the euphoria in Miami should be christened with a glass saltshaker heaved over the left shoulder. Yet, not all is ready to crumble in Dolphin land… The two most complete pieces of the puzzle have shown endurance Miami lacks elsewhere and are the keys to success.

Great teams draft and pay their stars, but the love affair with Ndamukong Suh only lasted four years in Detroit. A look at the Lions defensive ranking over those four years shows only last season as dominating. Even the man named Suh, a virtual lock for pro honors, was allowed to walk when Detroit soured on his untimely penalties. Miami caught a break landing Suh.

The hopes of keeping the flimsy gossamer thread binding the team together rests on Suh and his star counterpart on the offense, Ryan Tannehill. The young QB has shown great durability in the face of major adversity. The NFL’s most sacked QB over his career has yet to come up lame and continues to grow into the most difficult position in all of sports.

The question is, are these two ironmen enough to break the wicked spell that has left Miami bereft of playoff appearances?

It is always interesting to see the coaching merry-go-round spin in the NFL when the front office truly holds the keys to the franchise. Joe Philbin loses his pro bowl center and left tackle without adequate backups. He loses most of his secondary without adequate backup. Loses most of his linebackers, his star wideouts play possum and his starting running back was lost before the season even started.

Coach Philbin really sucks! He can’t get fourth stringers to beat Tom Brady, he can’t get a broke team to play the final two games! This guy has no personality he just stands there looking like a deer in the headlights… He is a deer in the headlights.

The coach of a team starting the season with high hopes only to have it disseminated by wicked glass shattered by men bashing heads at 40 MPH.

Is there a secret formula? Is the sun just too damn strong in Miami? Don Shula would never believe that, but Philbin must and somehow he continues to walk unfazed through the land mines leading up to the 2015 NFL season. Like every Miami fan, he dreads pre-season games as one player after another limps off the field.

The promise of redemption crumbled like an empty wine glass dashed in the fireplace.

The Difference in Miami is a Man Named Suh

The fate of the 2015 Miami Dolphins seemed destined to mirror the previous two 8 & 8 seasons. Then training camp started and Joe Philbin told his team, “Your goal is to win the Super Bowl!” The audacity of such a statement, the boldness Old Joe had never dared whisper when his prudence ruled his pragmatism. Joe was not capable of making such a statement because it was a lie and he knew it.

The Dolphins had done some equally bold maneuvers during the off-season that made the statement viable. Unlike when the team spent megabucks on a marginal wide receiver with attitude problems, the attitude problems they spent for this year struck fear in their opponents. A man named Suh…

"Son, this world is rough
And if a man's gonna make it, he's gotta be tough
And I knew I wouldn't be there to help ya along.
So I give ya that name and I said goodbye
I knew you'd have to get tough or die."

See, the Dolphins didn’t have the fear factor, they didn’t have an identity and all those folks out there calling the man named Suh dirty, well they’re just jealous because he’s a Miami Dolphin! Cameron Wake, he’s a nice guy but mean, not so much, until a man named Suh lined up beside him. Olivia Vernon, imagine when teams must double team Suh, the havoc this defensive line will wreak on the NFL.

Mr. Brady, Mr. Brady, may I have your attention please!

Your life is about to change and unfortunately not for the better. You see Tom, a messy pocket and interior pressure disrupt your timing and it is all about timing isn’t it Tom? And Tom, when you have to move off your spot and try to make it outside the pocket, there will be some company waiting. The man named Suh changes a finesse defense into power beast-mode defense. So we look forward to seeing you this season Tom!

“We’re looking forward to playing you,” are words Bill Belichick and Tom Brady are not used to hearing from Miami. It might seem like a lot to place on the man named Suh but there’s more and it comes from Ryan Tannehill. Tannehill is perhaps the only Dolphin player with more influence in the outcome of games. Suh influences with his attitude as much as his play, Tannehill must do the same.

The next step in Tannehill’s maturation came with a simply statement, “I should be judged by wins.” He finally understands the difference between good and great. A good QB has twice as many TDs and INTs. A good QB has a 66 percent completion percentage. No QB gets fired for putting up those numbers, but teams don’t get to the dance unless the QB wins a lot more than 50 percent of his games. Tannehill gets it. He knows if he ever wants to be considered great, he must win when the fight is even.

"Now you just fought one hell of a fight
And I know you hate me, and you got the right
To kill me now, and I wouldn't blame you if you do.
But ya ought to thank me, before I die,
For the gravel in ya guts and the spit in ya eye
Cause I'm the son-of-a-bitch that named you "Sue."

It’s the gravel in his guts and the spit in his eye that leads to victory and this attitude makes one NFL team better than the next. Victory, whether throwing four TDs or four INTs, if Miami comes out with a “W” that’s why we’re watching. It’s a brutal game, played by men who literally risk their lives for the spotlight and the chance to strike it rich, why not win? Why suffer all that and not go the extra step to beat an opponent?

Now perhaps we understand the change in Old Joe, because it’s not a change in Old Joe, he’s not capable of saying things to motivate unless he believes them. The change is in his team. His defense has a defining character led by a ferocious man that is feared by the entire league. His offense is led by a man who finally understands, the SB trophies on his mantle define his legacy, not his completion percentage. Old Joe is smiling…

I got all choked up and I threw down my gun
And I called him my pa, and he called me his son,
And I came away with a different point of view.
And I think about him, now and then,
Every time I try and every time I win,
And if I ever have a son, I think I'm gonna name him Bill or George!

Joe has a different point of view and I think Miami Dolphin fans may feel the same when this season is done.

Instead of pretty wide receivers, Miami has a man named Suh.