The 3-2 St. Louis Rams are one of the surprise teams so far this season and they look to keep pace with the rest of the now Super Division which is the NFC West when they face off against the 2-3 Miami Dolphins at Sun Life Stadium Sunday afternoon. Both teams head into this one coming off a victories as last week the Rams knocked off the previously undefeated Arizona Cardinals 17-3 at home while the Dolphins won 17-13 against the Cincinnati Bengals on the road.
The Rams defense has been playing well so far this year and rank 14th in the NFL in offensive yards allowed per game (335.4 yards), 12th in pass yards allowed per game (218.2 yards), 18th in rushing allowed per game (117.2 yards) and ninth in points allowed per game (18.8 points) which could create problems for the Dolphins offense in this one. Miami’s offensive unit currently sits 13th in offensive yards gained per game (373.4 yards), 18th in passing yards gained per game (237.8 yards), eighth in rushing yards gained per game (135.6 yards) and 19th in points scored per game (20.6 points).
Rookie quarterback Ryan Tannehill is having a see-saw first-year behind center for the Dolphins passing for 1,269 yards and two touchdowns but has thrown six interceptions already and has only completed 57.4% of his attempts. Tannehll must be much more accurate in this contest if the Dolphins are to stand a chance against a tough Rams defense. Reggie Bush will be the x-factor for Miami’s offense and they will go as far as he takes them. Bush is having his best season so far as an NFL running back rushing for 417 yards and three touchdowns on just 86 carries. If he goes off for a big game then that will only enhance the chances that Miami can come away with a much need victory to even their record at 3-3. Rams defensive end Robert Quinn has been one of the top pass rushers in the league this year with six sacks (tied for 3rd) and will be looking to get as much pressure on the rookie quarterback along with the Rams defensive leaders Chris Long and James Laurinaitis.
During the Rams victory over the Cardinals last week on Thursday Night Football, St. Louis suffered a major set back losing their top wide receiver Danny Amendola for at least six weeks with a dislocated clavicle. Amendola was Sam Bradford‘s (1,022 passing yards, 6 TD, 5 INT and 57.5% completion rate) favorite target and other wideouts must step for St. Louis in order to earn in victory in this contest and remain competitive throughout the duration of his injury. Brandon Gibson (13 receptions for 184 yards and 2 TD) and Chris Givens (4 receptions for 112 yards and a TD) are the next two candidates in line and will need to step up especially considering that the passing game will need to rise to the occasion versus the Dolphins. Miami’s rush defense is the top unit in the league allowing just 61.4 yards on the ground per game which means that Steven Jackson (77 carries for 271 yards this season) will more than likely struggle with running against them.
This game should be a defensive struggle and I doubt there will be a ton of points scored as a result; look for the Rams to come away with the victory in the end, 19-13.