Miami Dolphins' Defense Must Come to the Rescue

By Scott Feder
Thomas J. Russo-USA TODAY Sports

There is no lack of documentation to support anyone’s argument about the Miami Dolphins and their lack of offensive production. And since I am an animal lover, I’m not going to beat a dead horse. Instead, the discussion should be shifted towards Brent Grimes and what the Dolphins defense needs to do to give Miami a shot at achieving something they haven’t done since 2009: beat the New England Patriots.

It’s hard to say that New England appears to be having a ‘down year’ on the premise that they are leading the AFC East with a record of 5-2. Let’s be honest, if the referees didn’t call a penalty in overtime against them on a field goal attempt, Tom Brady would gets the ball back in OT against the New York Jets and perhaps there is a six in the win column instead of a five.

But the Patriots are in the midst of a down year. Brady has fewer offensive weapons at his disposal than Ryan Tannehill and because this, the burden of offensive production for the Patriots falls completely on the throwing arm of Brady. If there is ever a weekend for the Dolphins’ defense to show up, it has to be this weekend.

The Dolphins’ defensive unit stacks up pretty good against the run, allowing just over 102 yards per game, but is ranked 20th in points allowed and is 21st in yards given up per game.

Why the defense is so crucial to this game is because the offense’s inability to generate points. If Miami hopes to achieve victory and snap this three-game losing streak, they will need to get after Brady. The Patriots’ offense isn’t scoring at will like that have in recent years ,past and this is a result of Brady’s weapons either not being there or not being able to stay healthy.

Defensively, the key victory for Miami will be to contain Rob Gronkowski and to put as much pressure on Brady as possible. Gronk returned to action last week against the Jets and looked like he was already in midseason form. The Dolphins’ defense has only intercepted seven passes this year and have just under 20 sacks, so they will have to do a better job of getting after the quarterback if they hope to give themselves a chance at winning this game.

If the defense plays well, Miami could have a shot to win this game. To help alleviate some of the offensive woes, look for the defense to be more aggressive with their pass rush to try and coax Brady into getting rid of the ball before he can look downfield. If they can keep Brady moving around in the pocket, they will give themselves a shot at forcing a few turnovers and taking the burden of victory off of the offense, something all Dolphins fans would appreciate very much.

Scott Feder is a Miami Dolphins Contributor for Follow him on Twitter @federisbetter81, “Like” him on Facebook or add him to your network on Google.

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