Miami Dolphins vs. Atlanta Falcons: Five Things To Look For
With two pre-season games left to play, the Dolphins still have a lot of unanswered questions lingering like a drunk old man who won't leave the bar.
Ryan Tannehill wonders who he'll be throwing to. Joe Philbin wonders if any of the bubble players will step up and earn a job. Jeff Ireland wonders if any and all players' mothers are dirty, dirty whores. Lots of questions. Few answers.
The third pre-season game is widely accepted as the final-dress rehearsal before the start of the regular season. So what we'll see tonight is what we'll see come September 9 when the Fins open the 2012 season at the Houston Texans. If it's anything like their past two pre-season games, we're royally dicked.
1. On The Bubble
This is the time for dudes who haven't been all that impressive to step up and earn a spot, or else face the prospect of being cut and having to go back stocking the produce aisle at Publix with cantaloupes. Marcus Thigpen is trying to earn the kick-returner spot, while Austin Spitler is looking to secure a job as a back-up linebacker. It's both fun and depressing to behold. With all the pressure on to make the final roster, we could see guys having big games, or completely shitting themselves as they buckle under the pressure.
2. The Offensive Line
The sack of old lady diarrhea known as the offensive line has been putrid this pre-season. What an excellent time to throw in our rookie franchise quarterback and watch him get mauled like a pack of hyaenas taking down a baby gazelle. If Ryan Tannehill's career gets fucked by his lack of stand-out receivers and this awful offensive line, we're literally going to start to see Dolphins' fans faces melt off their skulls like the Nazis at the end of Raiders of the Lost Ark. Jeff Ireland and his brain trust have spent every draft taking large fat guys to put on their line, and not a single one (save for Jake Long) is worth dick. So, to recap: Ryan Tannehill is fucked.
3. Seriously, the receivers!
We're not sure if it's because it's pre-season and the coaching staff is waiting to unleash the real offensive gameplan, but they need to knock if off with this curl routes and then dive for the football near the sidelines horsefuck. This team has had many opportunities to take receivers in past drafts, like Hakeem Nicks, who went on to help the Giants win the Super Bowl last year, and Dez Bryant, whose mother is an aforementioned whore. So now, we're left with Roberto Wallace and Marlon Moore and a bunch of other assholes who can't run routes, catch, or get open. But, hey, Chris Hogan is totally gonna be the next franchise folk hero! *heavy metal fingers, bro!*
4. Defensive holes
A lot of it has to do with injuries, but the Dolphins defense has so far looked spectacularly not good. The front seven can't stop running backs and the secondary is getting skull banged with just about every long pass by opposing quarterbacks. Sean Smith has been solid, and Richard Marshall is making a strong case to start. But the defense, as a whole, has been atrocious. Karlos Dansby needs to hit up Marshalls and buy himself a pair of brand new chancletas because the defense needs his help. Also, is Cameron Wake dead? Someone should really check on this.
5. Ryan's Team
In spite of having the shittiest offensive line imaginable, and a receiving corps that would be on every other team's practice squad, Ryan Tannehill needs to show us his balls tonight. It's your team, kid. Kick ass, yell at assholes who run the wrong routes or miss catches, and for shitsake keep moving around in the pocket so that a linebacker does dislodge your spleen.
You can watch tonight's game on CBS-4 (Channel 34 West Palm Beach). Kickoff is at 7:30 p.m.
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