New Orleans Saints-Miami Dolphins: Week 7 Preview
The Saints did not make the playoffs last season, but they seem to be well on their way to the postseason with an impressive win over the New York Giants Sunday to remain undefeated.
On the other hand, Miami did make it into the postseason last year by winning the AFC East Division with a record of 11-5.
This game will prove to be more important to the Dolphins than it is for the Saints, as Miami enters week 7 with a record of 2-3 coming out of their bye.
Miami found itself down to the Jets with five minutes left in the fourth quarter. However, QB Chad Henne, marched the Dolphins down the field and Ronnie Brown punched in a touchdown with six seconds left.
The Dolphins are now led at the quarterback position by Chad Henne after their starting QB Chad Pennington suffered a season-ending shoulder injury during the game against the San Diego Chargers. Henne has started in two games and has exceeded expectations by winning both of them.
Henne has done everything that the Dolphins have asked him to do so far and more in leading Miami to two straight wins.
Henne has completed 44 out of 67 passes with a 65.7 completion percentage. He has also thrown for 448 yards with three touchdown passes and just one interception.
Miami’s key strength is in their running game, as they are led by Ronnie Brown and Ricky Williams. The Dolphins lead the league in rushing yards per game with the help of the many Wild Cat formations that they run causing confusion for many defenses.
Brown has 93 rushing attempts for 443 yards averaging 4.8 yards per carry. Also to his credit, Brown leads the team with six touchdowns. Williams has rushed for 316 yards off 61 attempts with an average of 5.2 yards per carry.
Williams has rushed for two touchdowns and has contributed to the offense with 11 receptions for 132 yards with a touchdown.
The receiving corps for Miami is led by Ted Ginn Jr., who has 16 receptions for 195 yards and a touchdown. Davone Bess and Greg Camarillo have also contributed with Bess catching 23 passes for 175 yards and Camarillo with 14 receptions for 119 yards.
The Dolphins defense is not what it used to be, but has been improving the past couple of weeks. Yeremiah Bell is leading the Dolphins defense with 34 total tackles while Gibril Wilson is not far behind with 30.
Jason Taylor is still proving to be a defensive force as he is leading the team with four sacks. The next closest to Taylor are Joey Porter, Randy Starks, and Cameron Wake all with two sacks this season.
Will Allen leads the team in interceptions with two and Vontae Davis can account for the only other interception on the team as he ran an interception back for a touchdown against the Bills in Week 4.
On the other hand, The Saints are off to a great start with an undefeated mark of 5-0 after handing the New York Giants their first loss of the season by a score of 48-27 with Drew Brees throwing for 369 yards with four touchdown passes.
New Orleans leads the league in points scored and yards per game and rank in the top-three in rushing yards and the top 10 in passing yards per game.
The Saints passing attack is led by Drew Brees, who has completed 110 out of 159 pass attempts for 1,400 yards. Brees has a completion percentage of 69.2 with 13 touchdown passes and just two interceptions.
New Orleans rushing game is a three-headed monster led by Pierre Thomas who has 48 rushing attempts for 284 yards and three touchdowns. Mike Bell and Reggie Bush have also contributed in the rushing game with Bell rushing for 263 yards on 60 attempts with two touchdowns and Bush with 42 attempts for 165 yards and 2 touchdowns.
The Saints receiving corps is led by Marques Colston, who has 25 receptions for 394 yards with four touchdowns.
Jeremy Shockey and Devery Henderson have also been good targets for Brees, with Shockey catching 22 passes for 199 yards with three touchdowns and Henderson with 15 receptions for 241 yards with a touchdown.
On the other side of the ball, the defense of the Saints is one of the best in the league. Roman Harper leads the team with 34 total tackles with Scott Shanle not too far behind with 32 total tackles.
Charles Grant leads the Saints with four sacks while Will Smith is second on the team with two sacks.
Darren Sharper leads the team with five interceptions; two of them being run back for touchdowns. The next closest to Sharper is Shanle with two interceptions.
This is an important game for both teams as Miami looks to keep pace with division leader New England while the Saints look to stay perfect and go 6-0.
By looking at the records alone this game would look to be a blow out but Miami is a much better team then their record portrays. Miami has a dynamic rushing attack with Wild Cat formations that will prove to test the defense of the Saints.
If Miami has any chance of upsetting the unbeaten Saints they must play tough defense and not turn the ball over. Miami’s defense has been improving but still allows many big plays which Drew Brees will definitely take advantage of.
I believe that it will be a very close game despite the high powered New Orleans offense but the Saints will end up victorious in the end off the arm of Brees.
The Saints are too tough for the Dolphins on both sides of the ball and will remain undefeated heading into Week 8.
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