Thursday, December 10, 2009

I'd Jag Myself Off But I've Got A Game To Play - or - The Dolphins vs. The Jaguars

"I'll Steal Myself A Car, Ferrari or a Jaguar, I'll Drive it a crazy speed, Straight over a cliff and into the Sea" ~Catherine Wheel, "Car"

In the song, the singer pronounces it JAG YOU ARE, but today we're going to talk about the JA-GWARS.  This Sunday, in a game obviously only locally televised in the State of Florida, the Dolphins will travel a short distance in NFL mileage in order to come face to face with one of the greatest football players of this decade.  For years he has struck fear in the hearts of defensive coordinators, as they try to gameplan against him.  If he had a better supporting cast, there's no doubt this player could be garnering MVP-type praise from the media and building upon a future spot in the NFL Hall of Fame.  He will no doubt be cause for concern for Pasqualoni and Sparano.  Will 2009 Charity Man of the Year, Akin Ayodele, be able to keep up with the scorching speed, and sweaty-brow determination?  The Dolphins, in the past, have never been able to figure it out.  The multiple threat abilities of this player is matched only by his tongue action on a double-stuffed Oreo and his willingness to step on any starving children on his way to get his hands on one...or an entire bag of said sweet treats.  That's right, bitches!  Forget Peyton Manning!  Forget Randy Moss!  We got real problems this week!  We got to face Ernest Wilford!

As has always been a Dolphins-esque routine, we release or trade a player only to have him come back to haunt us.  And while I doubt Wilford will have a big day on Sunday, what if he did?  Wouldn't that just be the most horrifying, embarrassing experience imaginable?

But seriously, there's much more to the Jaguars than Wilford, who is the 2nd TE behind some guy named after - wait for it - a car!  They also have a 3rd tight end.  You wouldn't believe me if I told you what his name was.  Ok, I'll tell you.  It's Zach Miller.  Yes, Zach Miller, the NFL tight end.  How did Zach Miller end up as the 3rd string TE on Jacksonville behind a German car and a Oreo-obsessed born again who was once covered in a game by a stack of yellow pages (I remember it very clearly - Wilford got called for offensive pass interference)?  Because it's a different Zach Miller, of course.  Not the big bruiser for the Raiders who puts up the kinds of numbers we only wish one of our TEs would, but some rookie who has 10 catches on the season.

Oh, but Tinshaker, the Jags can run the ball, what about the running game?  Well, there's a rumour that Maurice Jones-Drew won't be playing, and if he's not playing, there is no running game.  Oh but Tinshaker, what about that Jax WR that absolutely killed us in the pre-season game?  Troy Williamson?  He's on injured reserve.  Their biggest threat now is Mike Sims-Walker (they like double barrels in Jacksonville), and even he is injured and was limited in practice all week.  Oh but Tinshaker, surely they have a game-changer QB who can avoid the pass-rush and make things happen?  David Garrard is his name, avoiding the pass-rush is NOT his game.

Nope, offensively the Jags just don't have much going for them if Jones-Walker-Sims-Drew doesn't play.  And it's been reported that they don't generate much of a pass rush but I wouldn't look into that stat too much.  keep in mind that they play Indianapolis twice a year, and how many times did we get a finger on Manning when we played them in week 2?  The Titans and the Texans have pretty good o-lines as well as mobile QBs with big TEs and WRs to get the ball out to quickly.  Not saying the Jags will rack up the sacks against us, I'm just saying, who you play does have an impact on the stats.  Case in point, we played Buffalo twice and got 12 sacks in those two games alone.

As has been the case for a couple of years, the real strength of Jacksonville is their secondary.  To put it bluntly, when they're healthy, this is possibly one of the top starting secondaries in all of the NFL.  The stats may not back that up, but again, look at their division and you can expect the pass-against yardage to be high. The latest report from the Sun-Sentinel suggested that the Wildcat was over with and that Henne would be running a similar passing attack to the Patriots game.  I disagree with this, at least I should say, it's not what I would do.  I don't believe the Wildcat was used last week simply because the Patriots stopped it the first time around this season.  Also, Ricky Williams got injured, and the Dolphins were not going to even think about it with both Ronnie and Ricky out.  I would expect by this week they will have found a way to re-incorporate it into the offense and a suitable new cast member (to be honest, I'm shocked they haven't activated Kory Sheets yet, as he would be my first choice, and I'm disappointed they haven't been working on using Pat White as well - gotta be better slasher than QB).

Combined with more traditional running attack with the Jaguars D-line banged up, and their 4-3 defense, I see no reason for Henne to throw another 50 passes.  With every game from here on out being a must-win, we can't afford to have Henne's arm get fatigued.

After the debacle in Buffalo, I don't want to call this on an easy win, especially since the Jags are on a roll, but I expect the Dolphins to come out confident and swinging and get out to an early lead.  If Jones-Drew is limited or out, I don't think the Jags would be able to overcome a big deficit.

My prediction:  MIA 24 - JAX 13


  1. On offense establish the run, use play-action passing throwing at least 35 times against the Jags leaky pass defense. On defense play stout against the run and play solid pass defense. We can beat the JA-GWARS.

    Dolphins 24 Jaguars 17

  2. I'd like to see Lex (Luther) Hilliard get a bunch of carries this week. Seems like every time he gets the ball, he gets 5+ and when he gets through the first level, he's a handful to bring down. It isn't what the NFL wants, or "sexy" football for that matter, but I hope the Fins give the Jag-wahs a HUGE dose of Ricky and Lex this Sunday and don't turn the ball over.

  3. Watched the Jags beat the Texans largely because of gift turnovers. Grossman played alot because Schaub got hurt, but Schaub came back in and would have pulled it off except for his team being in a giving mood. Jags D line and Garrard's touch throwing were their strengths in that game.

  4. damn it tin, you had to go and do it again didnt you.   first we should beat buffalo, we dont.  second we dont stand a chance agains the pats, we win.  and now we should beat the jags, great.  way to go tinny boy, just jinx us 

  5. UK,
    I would definitely like to see more of Lex as well.  The kid runs hard.

  6. OOps, I did imply that I don't want to say it's a sure win...

  7. silly. Jones-Walker-Sims-Drew.  too funny. :-D

    Here are some recent observations:

    1.  Henning is calling the no-read 9 route in a rythem now.  Thats making the outs, slants and hitches more doable by backing the coverage off slightly.  Earlier in the season secondaries would just squat on the first 20yds from scrimmage and dare us.  See SD game.  Henne needs to move past the conservative over-n-out approach (2yds over and 2yds out of boundss) against solid single coverage and give the recievers a chance to go get a few 50-50 balls.

    2. We FINALLY are flirting with back-shoulder routes.  If Henne-Teddy were a would be build for the 40yd backshoulder 9 route.  It would make Ginns 5th gear more significant as well as Hennes rocket launcher that hangs where most humans only have an arm.

    3. Pat needs to open his package with a quick pass to the wide ass-open slot or H-back.  Know how I know hes open....cus EVERYONE ALWAYS blitzs from that position EVERY time he enters the game.

    4.  Zone 5 (?) - the space between the linebacker plane and the safeties in the center third of the field is getting no love from Henning.  It is the reason that opposing safeties get such good width, depth, and penetration against us (sounds so dirty).  We need to force them to defend zone 5.  It'll help the sweeps, slants and go routes.

    5. Did I actually witness consecutive Ginn returns that didnt end with him upright and out of bounds.  Holy Crap Sandwich.  Ease up there Turbo.

    6. We may have something in this kid Hartlin.....(but it aint speed - apparantly I could run hurdles in the Big Ten)

    7.  I have watched the Pats game three time (twice in slo-mo) and have yet to hold my head in my hands and groan "oh VERNON."  Maybe I'll catch it tonight in the fourth viewing.  And BTW the Fins have improved to 9-6 by my count after defeating NE on three consecutive days on my DVR :-D

    Lastly  8.  This team may have some stars and starlets (and yes I mean Smith, Home) but its consistency begins and ends with Polite and Starks.  Sweet Lou may be the best blocking FB this team has ever had.  I find myself watching him lead rather then the ball carrier often.  He NEVER whiffs.  And that is to say nothing of his filthy short yardage record.  And Starks is worth every drop of man crush lather that Omar spilled over him during camp this summer.  Consistantly disruptive.  He dents the pocket every time I see him rush.  Am very glad that he in fact only bumped that officer with his Semi in South or we'd not have a pass rusher on the DL whatsoever.

  8. get out to an early lead....yeah now if that happens, I would like to keep on scoring and for once (well excluding the first Buffalo game) at the end of the game not feel like I am going into cardiac arrest.

    Great read as always!

  9. "3. Pat needs to open his package with a quick pass to the wide ass-open
    slot or H-back. Know how I know hes open....cus EVERYONE ALWAYS blitzs from
    that position EVERY time he enters the game."
    makes perfect sense not only for White, but Henne too. But we rarely seem
    to be able to adjust to the blitz (why we don't have a screen audible I'll
    never know). The problem with White in regards to this is he's got a long
    wind-up. I gotta be honest, I watched him quite a bit in college and I
    never thought of him as a good passer (though at least a thousand people
    have told me I'm wrong about him).

  10. "4. Zone 5 (?) - the space between the linebacker plane and the safeties in
    the center third of the field is getting no love from Henning."
    As soon as we lost David Martin to injury, this area of the field was closed
    for business. until we can get Turner or Sperry into heavy rotation, I fear
    Fasano's rare deep route is the only threat here. Ginn/Camarillo/Bess are
    not going to be sent through that zone.

  11. "6. We may have something in this kid Hartlin.....(but it aint speed -
    apparantly I could run hurdles in the Big Ten)"
    Hartline's not a speedster like Ginn, but for his size he's very good. Keep
    in mind he's recently bulked up - probably carrying an extra 10 pounds or
    more since OSU.
    And good point about Starks - imagine if the tire had gone over the
    officer's toe!!

  12. Come on Tin. This is NOT an easy game. I really think the phins will have their hands full. They can't relax and have to take this as a playoff game. If not we'll see another Buffalo game. And BTW Jax is 7-5 and we're 6-6. And they are 3 point favorite so someone thinks the Jags are gonna win this game easily. I think its gonna be tough and we'll come down to turnovers

  13. I didn't say it was an easy game. You guys are putting words in my mou...i
    mean fingertips.
    "After the debacle in Buffalo, I *don't* want to call this on an easy win, *
    especially* since the Jags are *on a roll*"

  14. The Knight who says Ni!December 10, 2009 at 11:49 AM

    Tin, during the draft they listed Hartline at 6-2 195 and after we drafted him they've listed him at 6-2 186.

  15. The Knight who says Ni!December 10, 2009 at 11:50 AM

    "Pat needs to open his package with a quick pass to the wide ass-open slot or H-back."

    Interesting choice of words.

  16. Two words...street clothes. ;)

  17. Well, he's definitely not 186....have you seen him? unless he's wearing
    some extra pads he looks more like 208 to me. He's definitely thicker than
    Camarillo...isn't he about 200?

  18. ya, but how dorky does "quick pass to the very very very open slot or H-back" sound.  In truth they would be more open than just wide ass open but that would require inappropriate us of the f word: invoked as fnwao.

  19. Am having to trust the Tuna on the Pat pick.  If he can string a few completions together he'll start to breach that critical 2 yard zone of death for him on his runs.  And when that happens, face it, the kid is electric.

  20. Have not seen him in person...but on the tele he's definately Camarillo-ish.

  21. Love his fire though.  Little bit of Welker Koo-Koo Train going in that head of his.

  22. Don't you mean the 15 yard loss zone of death?

  23. The Knight who says Ni!December 10, 2009 at 12:32 PM

    Camarillo is listed at 190.

    Hartline looks pretty fast to me. Probably the fastest offensive player other than Ginn.

  24. The Knight who says Ni!December 10, 2009 at 12:33 PM

    Hartline did look thinner earlier in the year.

  25. I think Ricky is faster.

  26. maybe he's just wearing 'layers' due to the weather

  27. The Knight who says Ni!December 10, 2009 at 5:01 PM

    I don't think so. It's close but Hartline ran track and hurdles. He's a sprinter. Ricky is the better football runner. He's actually one of the best ever in my opinion. He's just had a weird career.

  28. Bob Griese pronounces it  G AGG WIRES,and Ernesto Wilfork,(LOL)!!!

  29. The Knight who says Ni!December 10, 2009 at 5:07 PM

    Maybe he has bulked up during the season. They still lift weights and eat specific diets. Maybe Hartine was 186 in August at weigh-in practicing in South Florida and now he's put on 10 lbs. in 3+ months. It's not impossible. I think Sparano said he needs to bulk up a little bit and get a little bit stronger. Nothing major just typical welcome to the NFL 'it's your livelihood'. You can improve conditioning during a season especially at WR where the contact isn't as severe.

  30. YEAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA     B         R          O           W           N            S     !!!!!

  31. WOWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWW,GO        M         I          A          M           I       !!!!!

    GO DET,GO CAROLINA   !!!!!!

  32. What the hellllll, GO TB,SEAT,INDY,MINN,StL,DALLAS !!!!!

  33. 13kv - do you ever sleep? lol

    Nice win by the Browns. Pretenders are starting to fall away. We can do ourselves a power of good with a win on Sunday. Or we can fall away too. I haven't been nervous in too mnay games this year, because I secretly harboured the fear that we may not be good enough to overcome that schedule (and N.E.) to make the play-offs, but the patsies seem to be sliding away and we seem to be getting last year's never-say-die attitude back and growing stronger. Of course, all that can change in a heartbeat, but now the finishing line is getting closer, my nerves are starting to play-up. Aaaaaaaaaaaarrrrggggghhhhhhhh.

  34. I know he's banged up and it was cold, but Roethlisberger looked like he had
    never thrown a football before. Ugly.
    13kv obviously works graveyard shift at a hotel or something and takes his
    laptop along lol. It doesn't matter *when* you leave a comment, but that
    you comment at all.

  35. I know Big Ben ALWAYS holds on to the ball too long and ALWAYS thinks he can make a play/shed tacklers even with 11 men on his back, but on some plays last night it looked like the ball had been sewn to his hand?!? I hope he remembers how to do that when we play them. ;)

  36. I doubt he will even play in the last game if they are out of the playoff
    uk, did you see my question yesterday about the carling cup?

  37. Tin/Tin's mob.
    I have to refresh each blog everytime to check for new posts and page through all comments, so if I've missed replying on occassions, no offence was meant!

    Tin - NO - I missed your Carling Cuo q. And I can't find it on the last blog either!

  38. I was just asking when the semifinal MUFC schedule is devoid of CC

  39. Semi-final(S) you'll be pleased to know. It's 2 legs. First leg is w/c 4th Jan, second is w/c 18th Jan (dates TBA I think?) Quite intruiging actually - before the draw, Fergie said he'd stick with the kids and I think he will, because when all said and done, it's a "Mickey Mouse" cup and only the 4th most important trophy to target, but then we drew City. Firstly, Sparkie (Hughes - the City manager) is a Utd old-boy if you didn't know (not sure how long you've been a red?) so that ups the ante. Then, on top of the "derby" status of the ties, there has been a bit of posturing between the two managers and when City signed Tevez from under Fergie's nose, it wound him up. There have been several accusations (Fergie) of City's "irresponsible" spending of the Abu Dhabi billionaires cash (they reputedly offered £130m for Ronaldo) so whilst any derby game is hotly anticipated, a cup semi with all the added background certainly promises to spice up the rivalry. City fielded a full-strength side versus Arsenal's kids and won easily. So the questions are which side will Fergie field and how well will it do against a City team with it's sights set on a top 4 Premiership place first and foremost, but with the League Cup possibly representing their best shot at silverware this season. Come on yoooooooou reds!
    On that note, I'm outa here. I'll try to get your feed on Sunday but I've been struggling recently and my homer or other source has been behind by a play so, frustratingly, I haven't been able to join the chat. Let's hope I can this week? Have a great weekend all - well, at least until the game. Boy is this one a big one. If we can get a result, it just could be the momentum builder that sends us to the promised land on the back of the Pats win. Fingers crossed finfans.

  40. The Knight who says Ni!December 11, 2009 at 10:38 AM

    13kvFINS posts were before 11:30 PM, what's so late about that? He's not 9 years old. LOL

  41. Wow, I don't understand the 2 legs bit, how do they determine who advances?
    and what do mean by 'w/c'?
    Interesting backstory there - I still have the last derby saved on my PS3 -
    probably the match of the year so far.
    I actually became a 'red' when I was about 8 years old - we didn't have
    access to a lot of games, usually just world cup finals and the occasional
    FA cup final. It seemed like 90% of the time it was Liverpool vs Manchester
    United (could just be my fuzzy memory). Anyway, my Dad, who it turns out
    has no interest in sports at all (though it didn't seem that way when I was
    a kid), always rooted for Liverpool, so I would root for Manchester united
    (we can never agree on anything). So I've sort of followed very casually
    since the late 80s, but only really got into it after I moved to the UK. I
    would say since I've discovered how to watch the games online this year, I'm
    more interested than ever.
    Anyway, you need to explain how the playoff works, because I don't get it.
    They play twice? then what?

  42. The Knight who says Ni!December 11, 2009 at 10:50 AM

    Tin, I guess trading Matt Roth for Joshua Cribbs would have been a good deal for us. Now the Browns have both of them and we got nothing for Roth.  >:o

    Cribbs is an impressive player.

  43. Yeah that was the blunder of the year IMO. No matter what they thought of
    Roth, I still think he had mid-round trade value.

  44. The Knight who says Ni!December 11, 2009 at 11:11 AM

    Was it rumored that the Browns would have wanted Roth for Cribbs?

  45. LOL @ UK,TIN,KNIGHT!! 
    I'm self-employed,and keep the hrs that suit my person,I sleep b/t 3or4 and 10 AM est..(later b/t Thu/Mon)
    Once the sun comes up,AM TV sukkks...

    THANX for noticing though,I feel popular,LOL!!!

    IMO,we've had 5 chances to make a statement this yr(as far as our record goes),
    we've been succesfull twice and failed thrice!!
    putting us ahead in the game for the 1st time in 09!!
    This week's final score will equate to double jeapordy,(one way or the other)!!

    C'MON   D  O  L  P  H  I  N  S,give me a reason to smile through the holidays,PLEASE,PLEASE,PLEASE!!!

  46. I guess that's the question of the season here..What the heck happened with Roth?  With Taylor and Porter both hurting, it looks like we might be looking at Wake and Anderson, two guys that seem to produce when played. 
    Also I was wondering if Patrick Turner is progressing alright like coach says or is he the next Murphy?

  47. I don't think so, but it's well known that Mangini liked Roth before this
    year and probably would have entertained trading for him. As it stood, the
    Browns had the top waiver claim position, so they got him the easy way.
    Cribbs had been on the trade block before though the Browns claimed they
    didn't want to trade him this year.
    Obviously in the NFL, player for player trades almost never happen, and I
    think at the time I graded them about even value wise.

  48. The Knight who says Ni!December 11, 2009 at 3:35 PM

    Thanks, yeah you said you would have traded Roth for Cribbs straight up and I was against it. I'd take deal now.  :(

  49. The Knight who says Ni!December 11, 2009 at 3:36 PM

    There was a falling out between Roth and the coaches and brass.

  50. Would you like to hear some of my other ideas that you'll disagree with now
    but eventually come to wish you hadn't? lol jk

  51. TIN,PW for a 4th and 6th or something to that affect??(Would be my GUESS to ONE of your OTHER IDEAS)?!?!
    Lets see,who else would TIN trade,(FASANO)for RIZZUTTO??

    I felt/feel the same as KNIGHT,(ROTH/CRIBBS)!!
    Hoped that MR'd be around for a few yrs,losing him for nuttin BLOWWWWWWWWWSSSS!!

  52. The Knight who says Ni!December 11, 2009 at 5:36 PM


  53. The Knight who says Ni!December 11, 2009 at 5:40 PM

    My guess is the trifecta is going all out out to land another pass rusher and top prospect at ILB. The Roth situation soured and it's done. They decided they're moving on whether we like it or not. They might be ready to go all out at the LB position in the offseason. I think they will.

    FA: WR, TE, NT, Pass rusher, ILB
    Draft: ILB, Pass rusher, NT and TE.

  54. It's on aggregate score first, then if tied, probably away goals (most goes through) and if it's still level they will probably play 30 mins extra time (15 mins each way), then if still tied, as second tie breaker and decider, penalties come next? But I could be wrong on that and away goals may not count? lol.
    I remember having a spell when I defected from the reds (after they won the European Cup as it was then - Champions league as it is now) to "dirty Leeds" because my dad was a red. I came back into the fold though. Fathers and sons huh ..... you have all that to look forward to!?
    Anyway, the play-offs are pretty simple really. One you're past the above, the final is basically a winner takes all game like the Superbowl, with extra time after 90 mins if level, then penalties after 120 mins if still level.

  55. The Knight who says Ni!December 12, 2009 at 11:01 AM

    Here's some 1st round draft prospects I'm looking at.

    ILB Rolando McClain 6-3 255 Alabama
    DE Derrick Morgan 6-4 272 Georgia Tech
    WR Dez Bryant 6-2 220 Oklahoma State
    FS Taylor Mays 6-3 230 Southern California
    ILB Brandon Spikes 6-3 255 Florida
    CB Patrick Robinson 5-11 194 Florida State
    CB Joe Haden 5-11 190 Florida

  56. I am a HUGE AV fan and am enjoying (however briefly) a 1-nil lead at Old Trafford on my DVR.  Probly fleeting but hey, its a lot like being a Fin Fan.  :)

  57. I am a HUGE AV fan and am enjoying (however briefly) a 1-nil lead at Old Trafford on my DVR.  Probly fleeting but hey, its a lot like being a Fin Fan.  :)

  58. KNIGHT,@WR I'd luv Bryant to fall to us in the 2nd(he's my 08 Alphoso Smith fetish),
    I also like BLaFell,EDecker,BWhite,and ABenn!!!

    @ILB McClain/Spikes in the 1st fer-sure!!

    I wanted TMays to come-out last yr,but since then I've heard alot of
    IF he were gravy he couldn't COVER a mound of mashed potatoes...

    MY new favorite Safties are Eric Berry Tenn,and Morgan Burnett Geo Tech..

    I hope that a young BJacobs fall to us somewhere(LeGarret Blount Ore)though he has some issues!!
    But there's alot of RBs that I like,Spiller,Dwyer,Best,Mathews,Dixon,McKnight to name a few!!

    TOOOO BADDDD SUH would cost tooo much to get to!!

    Didn't wanna leave'ya hangin,JMHO's !!!

    GO      M      I      A      M      I             D       O       L       P       H       I        N        S  !!!!!!

  59. The Knight who says Ni!December 12, 2009 at 12:47 PM

    I think Eric Berry is staying in school and if he does enter the draft he'll be top 5 for sure. We'd have to trade up to get him and it won't be cheap. Suh would be too expensive. He's #1.

  60. Thanks for the explanation - it sounds like you're just as confused as I am!
    I watched the aston villa game - I can't figure out how we lost that one -
    we must have had the ball for 98% of the 2nd half and had 3 strikers in....

  61. Congrats on the win....though I'm not sure how you won, other than good
    defense, and MUFC's inability to get a quick shot off. It reminded me of
    the Miami/indy game, but even more extreme ...thought we had the ball for 45
    minutes in the 2nd half!

  62. Yes, barring some sort of disastrous combine, Suh will be #1, but wouldn't
    you trade up to get him?
    I'd trade our 1st, our 2nd, and Akin Ayodele.