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Miami Dolphins

Dolphins and Coach Gase have come together in a hurry

Christopher Fischer

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Photo by Icon Sportswire

In the land known for making feel good stories come to life on the big screen, it was the Dolphins who continued scripting one of the leagues best turnarounds of the season Sunday in Los Angeles. Miami’s fifth straight win, after starting 1-4, was a last minute come from behind effort against the hopeful hero Rams QB Jared Goff in his NFL starting debut.

“Especially in the beginning of the year we played form behind a lot, we found out a lot about ourselves,” wideout Jarvis Landry said to NFL Network. “Coach (Adam Gase) said we could have something special here.

What has made the this five-game winning streak “special” is the maturation process of a young head coach and his team.

Gase has never been one to shy away from criticism and admit he is wrong. Case in point, Gase dialed back his no huddle hurry up plan of attack and had QB Ryan Tannehill and the offense start working out of the huddle following the loss to the Bengals. Gase said he felt too much, too soon on Tannehill’s plate.

Tannehill admitted the decision to work out of the huddle has allowed them to understand the play call and get lined up properly. It’s been a complete contrast from the miscommunication and uncertainty we saw early on the season.

Yet, the huddle also allowed Tannehill to inject some confidence to while trailing 10-0 Sunday in the fourth quarter.

“I told the guys right before the first touchdown drive, everyone take a deep breath, were going to win this game,” said Tannehill.

Along with the evolution of a first year head, the Fins fifth year quarterback is evolving as well.
Gone are the Week 4 “boo birds” calling for back up Matt Moore. Now that Tannehill is getting time to throw in the pocket, he’s showing the caliber of quarterback he can be.

That was no more apparent than in the final two drives of the game, where he went 12 of 13 passing for two crucial touchdowns in the final 6 minutes of the game.

“It was ugly on offense for most of the game, but defense kept us in the football game, made some really big plays for us, we found ways to make plays when it counted,” said Tannehill.

His running back Jay Ajayi has seen his fair share of praise lately, but neither one them would have it without the strength of the offensive line. Since all five starters have returned to the field, the Dolphins have yet to lose a game.

It’s not a coincidence that the success lately has been a direct correlation to the offensive line. The defense has even benefited from the O-Line stability.

Early on the in the season, the DC Vance Joseph’s defense was gassed and gashed for being on the field for too long. And while Sunday looked reminiscent of that, the defense managed to keep them in the game.

“That’s the way we practice, compete every single play, we practice this way especially on Fridays’,” said defensive tackle Ndomukong Suh. “It’s key for us to go out there and compete, and that’s what were going to do and continue to do.”

Some thought early on this season that Gase, the youngest head coach in the league, was in over his head, but now after five wins in a row, he is making a case for turnaround of the year.

Hollywood indeed.

A native Floridian who graduated from Clearwater High School and the University of Florida, Chris Fischer has spent nearly 15 years in Sports Televison, including the last five as Sports Reporter and Anchor with the CBS affiliate in Tampa Bay-WTSP. He is a multi time AP Sports and Local Emmy award winner and will be seen this season as a sideline reporter on CBS-TV’s network coverage of the NFL.Chris brings enthusiasm and passion (particularly when it comes to his Gators) to College and NFL coverage to F.F.I.

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Miami Dolphins

Dolphins being investigated for hiding severity of Tannehill shoulder injury

Florida Football Insiders

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Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports

For the most part everyone already understands that the NFL’s injury report that is loosely utilized to judge whether players can play or not. For three or more decades, teams have done their best to hide the significance of important injuries from everyone, including their opponents, while listing whatever they can get away with on the injury report.

And now, the Miami Dolphins are about to be the latest team to be scrutinized for what they did report about QB Ryan Tannehill injured shoulder a week ago.

As Armando Salguero of the Miami Herald wrote on Wednesday afternoon, the league is investigating the Dolphins for having listed Ryan Tannehill as having fully participated in practice on Wednesday and Thursday of last week. But then, listed him as limited for Friday and questionable for the game:

Specifically at issue, according to Salguero is that Tannehill was apparently unable to throw passes for most or all of Thursday’s practice while being listed as a full participant.

Further, he did not participate at all in the Friday workout, which should have led to the Fins labeling him as “doubtful,” because they knew the extent of the injury and that he couldn’t throw.

We now know that Tannehill suffered a sprained AC joint in his throwing shoulder in the fourth quarter meltdown loss to the Cincinnati Bengals the week before . and really had no possibility of playing in the Chicago game as the week went on.

That’s another point of contention for the investigation, because Miami coach Adam Gase never said any of that prior to the game. However, he admitted as such after the game Sunday (Tannehill couldn’t throw/was doubtful all weekend), and repeated it on Monday, as well.

And more confirmation that the shoulder has been injured so bad is: Tannehill was still unable to practice on Wednesday and the Dolphins have already ruled him out for Sunday’s game at home with the Lions.

The Fins announced that backup Brock Osweiler will start for the second consecutive week. Osweiler threw for 380 yards, three touchdowns and led the game winning field goal drive in the final minute of overtime against Chicago.

The league does have consequences for teams not being forthcoming, especially hiding significance of injuries with the most prominent players on their roster and their injury statuses.

They have reprimanded and fined teams, like the Patriots for an example, for not being forthcoming about injuries. Coach Bill Belichick responded one year by listing 25 players on his injury report one week for an upcoming game.

Most likely, the Dolphins will get a fine, if it can be proven that they were purposely misleading everyone, including the Bears when they knew the severity of Tannehill’s injury earlier last week.

And clearly they were, and did.

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Miami Dolphins

Dolphins WR Albert Wilson named AFC Offensive Player of the Week

Florida Football Insiders

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Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

The Dolphins knew that wide receiver Albert Wilson had big play potential, and now, that he has delivered early in 2018, others are seeing that potential realized too.

Wilson was recognized on Wednesday as the AFC Offensive Player-of-the-Week coming off of his two touchdown 155 yards receiving performance in the Miami thrilling when 31 – 28 over the Bears in overtime Sunday:

Wilson has become known for his ability to gain yards after the catch, and his spectacular 75-yard weaving catch-and-run to the endzone tie the game late in regulation.

His big receiving day was part of Brock Osweiler filling in for injured quarterback Ryan Tannehill on short notice to throw for over 380 yards in the victory.

The Dolphins were hopeful that the additions of Wilson, Danny Amendola and drafting tight end Mike Gesicki from Penn State would provide offensive spark. So far, Amendola and Gesicki have not given much in the way of productivity.

Now, it looks like snagging Albert Wilson off Kansas City’s roster in free agency last March was the right move by VP of football Mike Tannenbaum, GM Chris Grier and coach Adam Gase.

Sunday was Wilson’s first 100 yard receiving game in the Aqua and White and he is now averaging 15.6 yards per catch through Miami’s first six games.

And, Wilson has becoming one of the top big-play threats after the catch in the AFC, he even threw a touchdown pass to Jakeem Grant on a trick play in the win over the Raiders in week two.

Look for the creativity from offensive coordinator Dowell Loggains to continue to get Wilson into space and have the ability to make big plays continuing with this week’s match-up with the Detroit Lions.

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Miami Dolphins

Dramatic win moves Dolphins up in our Power Rankings

Jamil King

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Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

Our latest version of the F.F.I. Power Rankings will cause some debate. This is especially with an NFL moving into the top 3 and a brand new team making it’s debut. Take a look:

5. FIU Panthers- With the Canes, Jags and Bucs all losing, the fifth spot was up for grabs. The Panthers are currently 4-2 and on top of Conference USA’s East division. The Panthers two loses are against power five schools Miami and Indiana. FIU is led on offense by quarterback James Morgan a transfer from Bowling Green. Morgan has thrown for 1,368 yards with 14 touchdowns and four interceptions. Morgan will look to stay hot against Rice this week.

4. USF Bulls- The theme of the rest of these teams wins will be it wasn’t pretty. The Bulls needed a late last-minute drive and a pass from Blake Barnett to Tyre McCants with only several seconds left and a Coby Weiss’ 22-yard field goal with 2 seconds left to sneak by Tulsa. Jordan Cronkrite was able to rip off another big run of 66 yards but aside from that was held in check.

Barnett struggled during the game, and we even saw appearances from back up Chris Oladokun. The Bulls were able to squeak this one out and remain undefeated going into their homecoming game against UCONN.

3. Miami Dolphins- The Dolphins go from unranked to the number three spot. They were able to defeat a Bears team that has been impressive this season. The Khalil Mack-led defense had their least destructive game. Brock Osweiler threw for a career-high 380 yards and three touchdowns in a relief appearance for Ryan Tannehill, who sat out because of an injured throwing shoulder. Frank Gore had a resurgence. Albert Wilson turned two short passes into long touchdowns. Rookie kicker Jason Sanders (above) was money all day, and the Phins squeaked one out in overtime. At 4-2 they move into our top 5.

2. Florida Gators- The theme of close wins continues. The Gators were in a close one with Vanderbilt all afternoon. Tensions were high, when both coaches were yelling at each other by the Gator sideline after the benches briefly spread onto the field. The Gators were hurt by early turnovers and red zone struggles, but were able to put together enough offense to comeback for another win. Four SEC wins in a row (two on the road) is impressive. The Gators head into the bye week to prepare for a game against Georgia that now could decide the SEC East.

1. UCF Knights- The Knights had the closest of all the close calls last week, but remain in our top spot. UCF coach Josh Heupel gambled and went for it on a critical 4th down and the result was a 71-yard rushing touchdown. The Knights would take the lead in the 4th quarter. The Tigers moved to the UCF territory but, botched clock management in the final 30 seconds derailed a comeback. The Knights somehow found a way to win this game and keep the streak at 19 wins. UCF will head to East Carolina where they will look to have an easier time.

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