Miami Dolphins 2009 NFL Projection:
Bill Parcells came out looking like a genius as
Tony Sparano led the Miami Dolphins to a shocking (11-5)
record to win the AFC East, resulting in a
wild card playoff berth,
a home loss to Baltimore.
Chad Pennington had one heck of a season after being cast off by the Jets, and got the last
laugh on Brett Favre.
Coming into the '09 campaign the Dolphins welcome back Jason Taylor.
But defensive end Vonnie Holliday, free safety Renaldo Hill,
and cornerback Andre Goodman are no longer with the team.
Free agent acquisition Gibril Wilson keeps the Dolphins
exceptional at the safety position teaming up with
Meanwhile, second round draft pick Sean Smith appears to be beating out first round draft pick
Vontae Davis to start opposite Will Allen at corner.
Clearly Miami is not as strong at cornerback as at safety.
That could spell trouble with the return of Tom Brady in New England,
and the addition of Terrell Owens in Buffalo.
The Dolphins appear to be thin on the defensive line.
Jason Ferguson, a Parcells favorite, leads the group.
I see this as a problem area for the Fins
within the AFC East, as the Patriots and Jets return excellent offensive lines.
It will be up to the linebackers to drive this defense. Matt Roth
is injured, but the tandem of Joey Porter
and Jason Taylor on the outside could prove exceptionally potent to say the least.
On the other side of the ball, the Dolphins will suit up
a "decent" offensive line, led by right tackle Vernon Carey and
left tackle Jake Long. Jake Grove steps in at center from Oakland.
I'm not sure how often the Dolphins intend to run the wildcat this season...
Teams certainly have had more than enough time to prepare for it.
Once again, looking within their division, New England, Buffalo,
and the Jets appear to have very solid defenses this season.
That potentially spells trouble for the Dolphins' offense
in 2009. I think the Phins might have trouble running the ball out of standard sets,
and perhaps the wildcat as well. Meanwhile, can Pennington be expected to
repeat last season's performance?
A look at Miami's 2009 schedule
shows the opposite of last season's easy slate. In fact, it's the league's toughest.
Nearly every week, the Dolphins will be suiting up against potentially strong competition
Competition has increased within their division. For example, the Jets' defense benefits with the signing
up Rex Ryan as head coach, and he brings some key players along such as linebacker Bart Scott.
Meanwhile, Tom Brady returns for the Patriots. And the Bills
add T.O while suiting up what looks to be a strong defense.
The Dolphins have assembled a squad of solid players and have good coaching. But can they overcome their
intensely difficult schedule and division rival upgrades?
Overall we predict a record of (7-9) for the Dolphins.
Our initial preseason forecast called for a
return to the cellar of what projects to be a tougher AFC East...
But ineptitude in Buffalo's offense may spare the Dolphins that fate.
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