The Miami Dolphins lost their first road game of the season Sunday, falling 26-10 to the Baltimore Ravens, a team that is exactly like the Dolphins in every way except without all the interceptions and missed tackles and special teams blunders and dropped passes. The Dolphins are now 4-4 on the season, and have officially punched their ticket to Mediocreville, U.S.A. Let the calls for Chad Pennington.... COMMENCE!
The Dolphins have now failed to beat four playoff-bound AFC teams this season (Jets, Patriots, Steelers and Ravens). They have a middling offense, a defense that suddenly can't tackle, a special teams unit that looks for new and better ways to screw things up, and their star player this season has been their kicker. Also, Channing Crowder got into a skirmish after a Ravens player allegedly spit on him, which led Dolphins fans everywhere to exclaim, "Channing Crowder's playing in this game? Huh."
What Went Right: Not much went right for the Dolphins. After the Ravens started the game with an opening touchdown drive, Miami answered with a big drive of their own, ending with a 12-yard TD by Ronnie Brown. That was pretty much it.
What Went Wrong: Chad Henne had one of his bad days yesterday with a 231 yard, 0 TD, 3 INT performance. Two of those interceptions came after his receivers failed to make a play for the ball. But that won't stop people from calling for Chad Pennington and his 89-year old lady-arm to replace Henne as soon as humanly possible.
Brandon Marshall, meanwhile, finished the day with just five catches for 30 yards. It's really only a matter of time now until Marshall loses his shit and starts punting things during practice.
Before this game, the Ravens running game had been pretty mediocre. But nothing cures another team's woes like playing the Miami Dolphins. Baltimore's backs ran for 146 yards on 39 carries yesterday. The Ravens running backs also killed Miami's defense in the air, with a collective 139 receiving yards. Vontae Davis had one of his worst days in his young career, and Sean Smith dropped a potential pick-6 that fell right into his arms.
The defense failed to force a Ravens punt all day, and fell for a fake-punt even thought it took Baltimore roughly three and a half hours to execute.
Dan Carpenter missed a 46-yard field goal, ending his streak at 14-straight (IT'S TIME TO PUT CHAD PENNINGTON IN THERE TO KICK FIELD GOALS, BRO!)
What We Learned: 4-4 pretty much tells us all we need to know. The Dolphins can't beat the good teams, and has a ways to go before it can be a playoff contender. The good news is the schedule will start to get easier. The bad news is, by the time they start a winning streak, it'll probably be too little, too late.
Next Up: The Dolphins come back home to host the Tennessee Titans next Sunday. Randy Moss will be here. But he'll be playing for the other team. The Dolphins are, so far, winless at Sun Life Stadium this season (IT'S TIME TO REPLACE THIS STADIUM WITH CHAD PENNINGTON, BRO!).