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Dolphins....Couldn't Keep up with Brady's Brilliance

The Dolphins opened the season last night with a 12 play 84yard drive that consumed 7:18 of the first quarter. And if it wasn’t for that clock eating drive,Tom Brady may have passed his way into the record books, to the tune of 600 yards---seriously.

The All-Pro wound up throwing for 517 yards in a 38 -24 victory over the Dolphins. His
performance was like watching a surgeon operate, sans the rubber gloves, but wearing
a different type of mask. In the end, Brady sliced and diced the Miami Dolphins
secondary like he was serving up sushi in Sun-Lite stadium.

In what looked like a promising evening for the Dolphins, if only for one offensive series, soured quickly after Brady turned the game into a track meet. Brady matriculated the opening possession into the end-zone in three minutes, to tie the game. Moreover, it was the Patriots efficiency on offense that caught the attention of AFC Defensive Coordinators watching. During the opening quarter Brady was a perfect 8/8, for 127 yards. The Pats averaged 12 yards per play from scrimmage, thus engaging the Dolphins in a no huddle sprint, which they were ill equipped to compete in. Surprisingly, it was the Fish that appeared winded in the humidity and heat of Miami.

For all the talk of defense being the strength of the Fins this season, I was surprised at the lack of pressure and coverage adjustments by Mike Nolan against Brady. It’s no secret that if you beat up Brady, knock him around a taste, he’ll get frustrated…hell that’s with any quarterback. Yet, the Miami Defensive front-line failed to disrupt Brady’s rhythm. They were often manhandled by the Pats offensive line and out of gas by the end of the first half. Brady was standing tall in the pocket like the statue of Liberty for most of the evening—no distractions.

Mike Nolan needs to re- evaluate his secondary personnel. The firm of Sapp and Carroll were exploited throughout the game. It seemed like number 27 (Sapp) was chasing down receivers all night.But to be fair, Deon Sanders and Rod Woodson would’ve been hard pressed to
cover receivers without a little help from the defensive line.

While the Patriots were exploiting the Dolphin D, the much maligned Chad Henne did his thing offensively, in spite of the exploits of Tom Brady. The Fish were actually within a fourth and goal, to move within one score. But that changed dramatically after a questionable fourth down play call that led to an incompletion and subsequent 99 yard Wes Welker TD. However, there were enough indicators on the field see that Miami now has some juice on the offensive side of the ball.

Reggie Bush had a spirited 1st quarter. He was instrumental in the opening drive, running and catching passes out of the backfield. But he was a non factor for the rest of the game. It’s apparent that the Dolphins are intent on Bush touching the ball at least 17 to 20 times a game, whether he’s built to for that over the season, remains to be seen. Chad Henne’s performance was promising although over-shadowed by Tom Brady’s brilliance. Henne threw for over 400 yards and had good command of the offense through out the evening.

I’m not certain if the Dolphins defense will perform this bad again, nor am I certain that Tom Brady will pass for another 500 plus yards. Its one game….and one game does make for a season…next up the Texans and their high flying act...let's hope the Dolphins can keep pace.

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