Dolphins Crush Raiders 34-14, Continue Solid Play
On Sunday, the Miami Dolphins took out their frustration on the Oakland Raiders…..and knocked the Raiders out of first place in the AFC West. The Dolphins dominated this game from the opening kickoff until the final kneel down. The Dolphins controlled the clock by rushing for over 200 yards and by stifling the Raiders offense. The Dolphins defense again showed why so many thought they would be a top 5 defense, before the season started.
Matt Moore wasn’t spectacular, but he didn’t have to be. He was efficient, and that’s all the Dolphins are asking of him. Moore threw for 162 yards and 1 TD with ZERO INTs. Reggie Bush rushed 22 times for 100 yards and 1 TD. Daniel Thomas added 73 yards on the ground, as the Dolphins offensive line dominated the line of scrimmage.
The Dolphins defense did their part as well. They not only shut down Carson Palmer and held the Raiders scoreless through 3 quarters, but Kevin Burnett returned an INT for a TD. The Dolphins defense suffocated Michael Bush, holding him to only 18 yards on 10 carries.
Even special teams got into the act. Dan Carpenter, who returned from his groin injury, kicked 2 field goals. Rookie Clyde Gates, who’s been lackluster returning kicks in 2011, returned the opening 2nd half kickoff 77 yards. THAT is the type of production we want to see from the Dolphins rookie!!
This win was exciting for the Dolphins, no doubt. I even saw yesterday that some ‘experts’ are calling the Miami Dolphins the best 4-8 team ever. I’m sorry, but that’s like saying you’re the tallest midget at the carnival. The team is still 4-8, please stop with the pom pom waving Dolphins fans! Yes, I’m very happy to see the team playing better. However, a 4-8 record is not good enough. 4 wins in 5 games does not make up for starting the season 0-7. Any talk about the playoffs is just insane. The Dolphins are 3 games behind 4 teams for the 6th playoff spot (with other teams in between). They will likely be eliminated, officially, from playoff contention by next week. Sadly, all we have are 4 more games in 2011 to look forward to. So, in early December, we are forced to start to look towards 2012 and beyond. We’ll delve into that later, but Tony Sparano’s future could depend on how the rest of 2011 plays out.