Miami Dolphins Players Who Will Play Crucial Roles Down the Home Stretch
The Miami Dolphins have officially slipped up, losing three straight as they now head into the toughest part of their schedule this season.
Joe Philbin seems to have the right mindset as far as development goes, but he has done a mediocre job at best with his game-planning the past few weeks.
The Dolphins need to get back to the level they were playing at earlier on this year in order to stay in the postseason hunt, but they certainly have their work cut out for them.
If the Dolphins have any hope of making the playoffs, or at the very least winning a few more games, then the following guys are going to need to step up and make it happen.
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Anthony Fasano has reeled in a total of four catches on 11 targets in the past four games.
Without a reliable big man to throw to in the red zone, the Dolphins will continue to struggle coming down the home stretch.
If Fasano hopes to extend his tenure in Miami and help his team reach the playoffs, he's going to have to get a better rapport with Ryan Tannehill and be become a presence inside the 20.
If he can find a way to create space and use his 6'4" frame to his advantage, then he could very easily earn more targets in addition to a possible contract extension.
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The Dolphins safety made his presence known against the Bills last week as he recorded 14 tackles and a forced fumble on the evening in Buffalo.
With a a powerful performance like that, it makes you wonder what the 24-year-old safety is capable of as the Dolphins continue to rebuild over the course of the next few years.
If he can offer similar production to that which we saw on the road Thursday night, then Miami's opponents will have to think twice before attacking the Dolphins' secondary as aggressively as they have all season long.
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The Dolphins rookie quarterback has had his ups and downs this year, but it's safe to say that he has exceeded expectations and given the 'Phins hope moving forward.
The Dolphins are 0-5 this season in games where Tannehill throws an interception.
On the contrary, the team boasts a 4-1 record when Tannehill takes care of the ball, with Miami's sole loss coming in a close game against the Colts.
In order for the Dolphins to win their remaining games, their young QB must avoid costly throws and keep their offense on the field.
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Sean Smith has stepped up this year in the wake of Vontae Davis' preseason departure.
That being said, he has been inconsistent at times and has yet to prove his reliability as a top corner.
He hasn't had a ton of help in a weak Dolphins secondary, but he needs to emerge as a No. 1 caliber cornerback if this team has any hope of making a playoff run.
With two games remaining against the explosive Patriots offense, as well as matchups against the always tough 49ers and Seahawks, Smith and company will need to step up their performance and effectively eliminate big plays in order to win.
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Week after week I find myself saying the same thing: Reggie Bush needs to be the focal point of this Dolphins offense.
I'm not quite sure what the coaching staff is thinking in Miami, but with a talented athlete such as Bush on your roster, you have to work your game plan around him.
Tannehill has proven his ability to throw the ball at times, but utilizing Bush and the run is essential to opening up the passing game and putting points on the board.
It's critical to take some pressure of off their young quarterback, while also allowing their biggest playmaker the opportunity to, well, make big plays.
Anything can happen when the ball is in Bush's hands, but the Dolphins simply have not been putting it there, handing off to the back just 24 times in the past three weeks.