Coming off a very poor performance in a 59-10 blowout loss to the Baltimore Ravens during opening weekend, the Miami Dolphins will be finding it quite hard to rebound this weekend as they host the New England Patriots. The Patriots will look to hammer down on the Dolphins even more after adding wide receiver Antonio Brown to their receiving depth that already includes Josh Gordon and Julian Edelman.
Tall task ahead for Miami
Miami quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick made NFL history on Sunday as he became the first QB ever to throw a touchdown for eight different teams. Fitzpatrick will look to build on his 14-for-29 and just 185 passing yards in week one against a defense that held Pittsburgh Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger and the team to just three points. Additionally, Miami had just one TD in the game, a six-yard score to rookie Preston Williams.
“I think we’re kind of moved on to this week. I think everyone had plays they wished they had back, and some guys – as a coaching staff, we have things we have things we wished we had back, but we’re kind of moved on to – I shouldn’t say kind of. We’re moved on to this week,” Dolphins head coach Brian Flores said.
The Dolphins have little time to figure out its offense miscues if they want any chance of scoring on New England. It’s obvious that being at home didn’t help matters much for Miami in week one, and it’s a tough case to sell that it’ll upset Brady and the Patriots for the fifth time in six tries. Both teams are clearly going in opposite directions.
“We’re trying to build the Miami Dolphins. I’ll say that first and foremost. New England has their players, their coaches, their own organization. We’re the Miami Dolphins, and we’re trying to build something here. Each player is different. Each coach is different. How you coach differently, it’s all different. To build something in the likeness of someone else – that’s not how it works. We’re going to have our own personality as a team, our own culture. That’s the goal,” Flores said.
New England revenge
The Patriots will look to avenge last year’s “Miami Miracle” and put the Dolphins down and out early. Brady will also have a new target to throw to in Brown, assuming he takes the field. Brown has practiced this week, but recent allegations in the news could push off his debut or limit his time this season.
With Gordon, Edelman and now Brown, amongst the teams’ other pop-in receivers and running back committee, the Dolphins defense that gave up 643 total yards last week are very likely in for a long day.
In what was thought to be a close game, Brady and the Patriots tore through the Steelers, going 24-for-36 with 341 yards and three scores. There’s no reason at all why those numbers will slow down this week.
“Everybody knows the Patriots are a well-coached team. They are coached by Bill Belichick. There’s a reason why they are in the Super Bowl each and every year. They make you make mistakes and they execute off of it,” defensive tackle Davon Godchaux said. “At the end of the day, we’ve got to make less mistakes and execute our plays. The biggest thing on my mind that we need to do this week is (to) start fast, and focus on defense, offense, special teams. We need to start fast.”
What to expect
Division games are always close games, but from what anyone who watched saw from the Miami defense on Sunday, this will almost certainly feel like a cake walk for the Patriots. There’s no reason why New England won’t be up big at the half like the Ravens were, and the Patriots should put this game away early.
Kayla Morton contributed to this article.