Friday, October 22, 2010

The Steelers are Black and Yellow, The Dolphins are Black and Blue

The Dolphins won a close one last week and hope to carry their winning ways over to their home game versus the Pittsburgh Steelers on Sunday.  While they are 3-0 on the road, the Stadium once named Joe Robbie has been a bit too fuzzy and soft this season, and it showed in the Dolphins' two losses there thus far.  Sun Life Stadium,or whatever it's called this week, has never been an optimal football stadium, but when the team needed to put more blood, sweat, tears, grease and steel into it, they instead put a bunch of second rate pop singers cum part owners, electrical gadgets and a sushi bar (where, ironically, you can order mahi mahi, aka Dolphin Fish).

I'm not saying modern comforts aren't important business moves to reward paying customers - they are.  However, there's really only one thing that sells tickets and that is winning games.  Anytime any sports team goes on a win streak, their ticket sales skyrocket.  Now the Dolphins have never had any problem selling tickets because they have a storied history and are generally competitive.  However, when they're not winning, half the fans who bought the tickets don't bother to show up.  Luxury boxes sit empty as corporate owners can't give the seats away.

The trend of the Dolphins lackluster play is not a new one, they were 4-4 at home last year including  losses the last two games of the season hosting Houston and this week's opponents, the Steelers.  That means the Fins are on a 4 game losing streak at home after eking out victories of 1 point and 2 points versus the Patriots and Titans respectively.  Before that was the ugly loss to the Saints. 

The Dolphins do not want to lose a fifth in a row at home.  They do not want to drop to 3-3 overall.  They need a win to stay in the hunt for the division.  They need a win to improve their confidence at home.  Basically they need a win because the only other option is to keep losing, which is not an option.  And they want that win to come versus the Steelers who have owned Miami to the tune of four consecutive games.

The only way to do it is to play smash mouth football and limit mistakes.  The Steelers are not the kind of team that is going to run around you.  They are just going to keep hitting you until the ball rolls their way.  The Dolphins need to man up.  I suggest on the first drive that Brandon Marshall hit Troy Polamalu in the face.

My Prediction:   MIA 17  PITT 16

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