DOLPHINS BLOWOUT FOURTH TEAM IN FIVE WEEKS
The Dolphins are back to their winning ways with yet another blowout victory, this time destroying the Oakland Raiders 34-14 to improve to 4-8 on the season. After starting the season off 0-7, the Dolphins have won four of their past five games with the only loss coming on the road in Dallas on Thanksgiving where they lost by one point on a last second field goal. The other four games, which were wins, have all come in convincing blowout fashion. They beat the Chiefs by 28 points, the Redskins by 11 points, the Bills by 27 points and now the Raiders by 20 points. In fact today's game on paper looks much closer than it actually was as the Raiders scored two garbage time touchdowns late in the 4th quarter.
The Raiders were never in the game, even after Miami's offense started a little slow only scoring 6 points on their first two drives. The Dolphins opened the flood gates in the second quarter when quarterback Matt Moore hit Davone Bess for a 12 yard touchdown to put the Dolphins lead at 13-0, a lead which the Dolphins would take into halftime.
The Dolphins started the second half just as they ended the first half, on fire. Rookie Clyde Gates took the second half's opening kickoff 77 yards to the Raiders 25 yard line. Three plays later, Reggie Bush found the endzone on a one yard run. It was Bush's 5th rushing touchdown of the season and gave the Dolphins a 20-0 lead early in the 3rd quarter. The Dolphins were not done as later in the 3rd quarter, they scored two touchdowns in just three plays. After Moore rushed for a 6 yard touchdown, linebacker Kevin Burnett picked off Raiders' quarterback Carson Palmer and returned the interception 34 yards for a touchdown. Those two quick touchdowns pushed the Dolphins to a 34-0 lead.
While the defense dominated and the offense was firing on all cylinders, the Raiders were able to punch in two garbage time touchdowns late in the 4th quarter. Palmer connected with receiver TJ Houshmandzadeh for a 40 yard touchdown and Darrius Heyward-Bey for a 3 yard touchdown.
Bush had 100 yards on 22 carries and had his second 100 yard rushing day of the season. Bush also now has 667 yards rushing on the season and is now a new career single season high. Today he passed his former career high of 581 yards he had with the New Orleans Saints back in 2007. If Bush averages just over 83 yards rushing over the last four games he would earn his first 1,000 yard rushing season. Also, with five rushing touchdowns, he is just one touchdown away from tying his career high single season six touchdowns he had in his rookie season with the Saints.
The Dolphins are now 4-8 and welcome the Philadelphia Eagles to town next week, before heading up to Buffalo to take on the Bills. On paper, and with how well the Dolphins have been playing and how bad the Eagles and Bills have been playing it is very realistic to think the Dolphins can win their next two games to improve their record to 6-8. It also realistic to think after how this team has steamrolled the majority of the competition the last five weeks that the next two games could also be won by double digits.
What looked like a foregone conclusion just over a month ago is now questionable at best. Will the Dolphins fire head coach Tony Sparano at the end of the season? The way the team is playing right now and how much the players respect and fight for him, it is not out of the question that Sparano will be walking the Dolphins sideline in 2012. However, we can not ignore the 0-7 start which is why owner Stephen Ross has a very difficult decision early next month. How this team plays and the outcome of the final four games will likely go a long way in determining Sparano's future. What we do know today though, is that Sparano's seat seems to be cooling every week.
Enjoy the win Dolfans!
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