Week after week, the word around the Miami Dolphins facilities has been about the need to get the running game going again. The players said it, the coaches said it, the analysts said it, and even the fans were saying it. After a string of sub-par performances it had become clear, the Dolphins had to take some pressure off of Ryan Tannehill by moving the ball on the ground.
Week after week went by, and Miami failed to establish any real threat on the ground, an impotence the players found to be extremely frustrating considering how successful the rushing attack had been at the start of the season. Reggie Bush was being benched, and it looked like the wheels were falling off of the Dolphins season. It was going to take heart and determination to keep from sinking to the bottom of the AFC East.
On Sunday, that heart and determination was on full display as the Dolphins came from behind in the fourth quarter, and beat the Seattle Seahawks to keep their fading playoff hopes alive.
Finally, the running game got going, and Reggie Bush was finally able to reestablish himself as a key contributor, taking advantage of just 14 carries and finishing with 87 yards and a touchdown. Surprisingly, he only had one catch, and it was for negative yardage.
Bush wasn’t the only Dolphin making a difference on the ground, he had help getting the run game on track. Daniel Thomas was able to finish with 60 yards and a score of his own, impacting the game as a secondary back. Thomas also only had one reception, but rather than losing yardage like his counterpart, Thomas took his for an 18 yard gain.
Regardless of the running backs’ lack of production in the passing game, the two got it done on the ground, which was something the Dolphins sorely needed. As a team, Miami rushed for 189 yards, the most they had gained on the ground since Week 3.
Another key point of Sunday’s performance is the defense Bush and Thomas faced. Seattle has a very stout rush defense that has only allowed 100+ yards twice this season. Take away those two bloated statistics, and the Seahawks are allowing an average of just 64 yards a game.
Having the run game get such good results against such a stingy defense makes the win even more meaningful. A game like this should boost the confidence of the entire team as they head into Week 13, and with the red-hot New England Patriots next on the schedule, the Dolphins are going to need all of the confidence they can get.
eff Everette is a Featured Columnist for RantSports.com, covering the NFL and NBA. Follow Jeff on twitter @jeverettesports, like his page on FaceBook, or add his Google + to your circles for all of his latest articles, thoughts, and rants.