Tuesday, August 9, 2016

MIAMI DOLPHINS - 2016 Season Preview

MIAMI DOLPHINS                                                                         

2015 Record:  6-10-0

Head Coach:  Adam Gase

New Faces for 2016 - DL Mario Williams, CB Byron Maxwell, S Isa Abdul-Quddus, LB Kiko Alonso

OFFENSE:  Ryan Tannehill (4,208 passing yards with 24 touchdowns and 12 interceptions in 2015) is entering his fifth season and is backed up by Kellen Moore.
Jay Ajayi is replacing Lamar Miller (gone to Houston Texans) as the top running back after showing some flashes last year in limited action. Ajayi had 187 rush yards (3.8 ypc average) and scored one touchdown. Rookie Kenyan Drake (Alabama) and Damien Williams, who is a decent receiver out of the backfield, will be the back ups. Arian Foster is also in camp after an injury plagued season with Houston last year.
Jarvis Landry (110 receptions, 1,157 yards and four TD), Kenny Stills (27, 440, three TD) and DeVante Parker (26, 494, three TD) are the main stays at wide receiver this season. Jordan Cameron is the tight end and he made 35 receptions last year for 386 yards and three scores.

DEFENSE:  The Dolphins play the 4-3 set and have Ndamukong Suh (six QB sacks) and Earl Mitchell at tackle along with Cameron Wake (seven sacks) and free agent Mario Williams (five sacks with Buffalo last season) playing the end positions. Dion Jordan could be another player up front after being re-instated following last season's suspension by the league.
The linebackers are Kiko Alonso in the middle along with Jelani Jenkins and Koa Misi manning the outside. Neville Hewitt, Zach Vigil (rookie from Utah State) and Mike Hull provide depth.
The safeties are Reshad Jones and Isa Abdul-Quddus while Byron Maxwell and perhaps rookie Xavien Howard (Baylor) will play the cornerback spots. Tony Lippett and Bobby McCain are other options at cornerback.

OUTLOOK:  The Miami Dolphins have a new Head Coach with Adam Gase taking over for the 2016 season. He is known for his offensive prowess and perhaps Tannehill will benefit from that and improve the stale offense (19.4 points per game last season) that ranked 27th overall.
The running game has question marks but the Dolphins believe Ajayi can do the job as they let Lamar Miller leave in free agency.
Jarvis Landry is a solid wide receiver and Tannehill's go to guy but the other wideouts have to step up along with TE Cameron Wake. The offensive line must do better in pass protection as Tannehill was dropped 45 times last year.
Defensively, the 'Fins must improve, especially going against pass happy New England and the New York Jets twice in a season.
The defense ranked 25th overall (376 yards allowed per game) along with 28th against the run and 21st against the pass. They also gave up 24 points per game.
Playing in the AFC East, Miami can make a move up the ladder and perhaps, if things break their way, they could compete with Buffalo and/or the New York Jets for second place.

Fearless forecast -  6-10 this year

Week 1 - at Seattle
Week 2 - at New England
Week 3 - vs. Cleveland
Week 4 - at Cincinnati
Week 5 - vs. Tennessee
Week 6 - vs. Pittsburgh
Week 7 - vs. Buffalo
Week 8 - BYE
Week 9 - vs. NY Jets
Week 10 - at San Diego
Week 11 - at Los Angeles
Week 12 - vs. San Francisco
Week 13 - at Baltimore
Week 14 - vs. Arizona
Week 15 - at NY Jets
Week 16 - at Buffalo
Week 17 - vs. New England

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