Dolphins Sweep Patriots


The Miami Dolphins ended their 2021-2022 with a win but one can hardly say that they ended it on a high note. The Dolphins did impressive work to turn things around a 1-7 record at the midway point of the season into a respectable winning record, but unfortunately it was not enough to get them into the post regular season tournament. Therefore, this season can ultimately only be seen as a disappointment. The Dolphins have only made the playoffs twice over the past 2 decades and their last playoff win was all the way back in December of 2000. Remember that year? That year where we were all scared of the world ending because all of the computer systems were supposed to crash on us. That was the last time the Dolphins won a playoff game. Bill Clinton was still the president. Let that sink in for a minute.

Football season is a special time of the year, and we all want to see our team win. We start the season with lots of hope for optimistic outcomes. We live and die with our team. It always feels good to beat the Patriots and the Dolphins completed the season sweep of New England on Sunday for the first time since the year 2000 as well. Opening and closing the season with a win over the Patriots usually means that you are in the running to win the division and make the playoffs, but a bad loss to the Jacksonville Jaguars in London made sure that the Dolphins were just spectators in the final week of the regular season. Miami could not even play spoilers because the Pats had already clinched a spot in the playoffs the week before. This is an all too familiar script of mediocrity that the Dolphins have followed for the past 22 years. It is frustrating to be a Dolfan. It is downright difficult to be a Dolfan. Especially when we have to watch perennial powers have extended success or teams that were in the dumpster with us finally able to climb out of the trash heap while we can only muster a lucky season where we get destroyed in a Wildcard playoff game once every decade.

I remember being so upset when I wanted the Dolphins to get Drew Brees, and they did not. Then I wanted them to draft Aaron Rodgers because I had been watching him since high school and knew that he would be an amazing professional. The Dolphins drafted Ronnie Brown instead of a future hall of fame QB. I remember watching the run up to the 2018 draft and could not for the life of me understand why so many people were underestimating Lamar Jackson’s prospects as an NFL quarterback. We drafted Minkah Fitzpatrick and then later traded him to Pittsburgh for a pick that would become Austin Jackson because the coach and player couldn’t get along. Russel Wilson, Matt Ryan, and Justin Herbert were all quarterbacks that we could have taken that we passed on. Pre-draft I was screaming to everyone who would listen to take Herbert. We went in a different direction. It is the Dolphin’s curse. It seems one thing that is for sure is that they will pick the wrong coach and the wrong quarterback. Drew Brees is on his way to the hall of fame, does anyone know where Daunte Culpepper is?

The Dolphins were clearly tanking in 2019 to draft a QB in that deep draft class. The number 1 pick was theirs if they wanted it, then they suddenly decided to win five meaningless games at the end of the season and ended up with the 5th pick. Bye Bye Burrow. Does anyone remember those meaningless wins now? Jackpot Joey was a player who could have finally changed the trajectory of this franchise, but more bad decisions took Miami completely out of position to get him.

Tua is not a horrible pro like some make him out to be. He has won a lot of games as the starting trigger man for the Dolphins, and he is undefeated in three starts against Bill Belichick and the New England Patriots. Tagovailoa throws a very accurate short to intermediate ball and has the ability to get it downfield at times. He struggles with consistency and chilly weather though. He also struggled with some accuracy issues in the home season finale against the Patriots defense after coming out on fire in the opening drive when he led the offense down the field and scored. At this point in his young career Tua seems like he is going to need a lot of work and development before considering him as a potential starting franchise quarterback. Tua flashed some brilliance in his rookie season in games against Arizona and Kansas City but his sophomore season we have seen less of those flashes and more of the game management part of his skillset. I want dual threat Tua back. If he can get the running game back as a part of his skillset it could change a lot for the trajectory of his career.

Mac Jones was not impressive in Sunday’s game no matter how much the national media wants to build him up to be the next Brady. He threw a pick 6 to Xavien Howard in his first offensive possession and from that point forward it felt like the game was effectively finished with the way the Dolphins defense has been limiting teams on the scoreboard. However, Mac Jones is the one in the playoffs and will be getting plenty of reps in the most competitive games he has ever played in his life next week while Tua and the Dolphins are home watching. The Dolphins need to address their offensive line, running back room, and wide receiver corps if they want to seriously contend for a playoff spot next season and stop being Buffalo’s AFC East doormat.

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