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two Patriots’ fans who went through my December Facebook post
The Miami Dolphins begin the 2019 regular season this afternoon by welcoming the Baltimore Ravens to Hard Rock Stadium. This is a tough test to start the season for Miami , especially since the Ravens have beaten up on the Dolphins in recent years, including 2017’s 40-0 trashing of the South Florida club. What should we be watching for the Dolphins this week? There are plenty of areas of concern and curiosity when it comes to a team that has 14 players new to the team since the rosters were cut down to 53 players. 1. Offensive lineThe Dolphins offensive line was a question mark throughout the preseason, with both guard positions and the right tackle spot puzzles that still needed to be solved. Then Miami traded away left tackle Laremy Tunsil and suddenly everything except center needed to be addressed. Daniel Kilgore, elected as a captain for the second time, will man the middle of the line, both guards will likely be rookies as Michael Deiter and Shaq Calhoun take those positions, though newly acquired players like Danny Isidora potentially claiming a position. Jesse Davis appears set to move to left tackle after playing right guard last year and right tackle all preseason this year. That leaves Isaiah Prince likely the right tackle, unless Julién Davenport of J’Marcus Webb can get spun up on on the playbook and protection calls incredibly quickly. The Ravens are going to look to pressure Miami’s quarterback, and the offensive line has to be ready to perform. 2. Ryan FitzpatrickSpeaking of quarterback, Fitzpatrick won the starting position in a summer-long battle with Josh Rosen. The veteran now has to come in and catch the FitzMagic that made him the starter for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. The coaches seem to want him on the field, either because Rosen is not really ready to play or because they already believe they know that Rosen will not be the team’s quarterback of the future. Either way, Fitzpatrick may have a shorter leash than we realize at this point. A poor performance or two , and Miami could look to move to the second-year passer.3. Defensive front sevenAll offseason and throughout the summer, the talk was Miami using more 3-4 looks compared to the 4-3 scheme, four defensive linemen and three linebackers, that has been the team’s base for the last several years. In the preseason, we primarily saw the team in a 4-3, with a nickel package (two linebackers, five defensive backs) extremely common. Yet, when Miami released their first depth chart of the regular season, it was built as a 3-4 scheme. Will the Dolphins truly shift to a 3-4, despite not showing it much in the summer? Will it provide the success - especially in the pass rush - that the team needs?4. Minkah FitzpatrickThe Dolphins’ depth chart also listed Minkah Fitzpatrick as the team’s second-string strong safety. Some fans reacted to that as a slight to one of the team’s best talents, and confirmation that the team does not know what they are doing. It is more likely that the coaches just needed to put him on the depth chart somewhere, so that is where they chose to do it. Fitzpatrick will likely see time at strong safety , with starter Reshad Jones not expected to play every snap as he did a couple of years ago, but he will be more than a rotational player. The Dolphins know they have a wildcard piece in Fitzpatrick, able to line him up just about anywhere on the defense, and they should use that ability. He will be a player to watch just to see how Miami uses him.5. Wide receivers and tight endsThe Dolphins headed out of the preseason with Kenny Stills expected to be the top option in the receiving group. A trade to the Houston Texans later, and now the Dolphins need to find the head of the receiving group. Can DeVante Parker step up into that role, finally? Will Albert Wilson or Jakeem Grant find success as the top option? How will Allen Hurns and Preston Williams factor into the group? Will tight end Mike Gesicki become a favorite target, taking a step forward after a down rookie campaign? If you’re as passionate as me when it comes to your hatred for the New England Patriots, then it’s safe to say that last night was rough. I was hoping the Rams could pull off an upset, but we didn’t get that lucky DolFans. It’s alright though, because now we can officially begin our 2019 season. We will finally have a head coach!The Miami Dolphins will hold a press conference today at 4pm to introduce Brian Flores as our new head coach. I know I’m going to be taking a break from work to follow along on Twitter. If you’re not excited about our new hire it’s fine. However, that being said, it’s about time to get over it because it’s happening. Let me just say , after watching a defensive lead Super Bowl last night, I’m excited to see what Flores can do with our team. Do we know if he will turn out to be a great coach? Nope. Nobody really knows until you give them a chance. So maybe let’s be hopeful about it. Adam Beasley tweeted this out earlier today. I think our fan base, as a whole, should show nothing but support for Flores. Let’s see if he truly was the genius behind the Patriots’ defense. Like I told a fellow fan on twitter, you can be hopeful and optimistic or continue to complain and be miserable. Last night was miserable enough, and listening to the media discuss Brady all week will definitely be enough for me to try and look forward to something. That something is watching our Dolphins hire a new coaching staff and have faith Grier made the right decision. Coaching Hire Tweets and Flores PraiseThere have been several tweets this morning discussing the new potential coaching staff under Flores. I’m personally just waiting to see when it’s all official but here are some of the tweets I saw this morning related to coaching and brags about Flores. Well, he’s got a point there. It seems many teams are hoping they find their “Sean McVay” but I’m not too upset with our hire. Here’s another Flores related tweet. I mean, I kinda agree with him. Now, GMFB, I do like you guys and I’m excited about our new coach, but still not supporting the fact the Patriots won. Let’s just be clear on that.See, these are some reasons to try to remain hopeful you guys. Because , let’s be honest, it’s all we have right now. In Flores we trust. In Flores we trust. If you repeat that several times out loud, you start to believe it. Here is a tweet as well about another coach possibly coming to join us from the Patriots. I’m not sure who he is, but according to this tweet, he has done good things. We shall see, if he is indeed hired. I guess we shall see. Also, one other tidbit I saw about potential coaching. Like I said, nothing is official yet until after Flores is announced at 4pm today. I’m excited to see what unfolds over the next several days. The Super Bowl and other Dolphins Related News If you missed the Super Bowl, no worries. The half-time performance was probably one of the worst in history and overall the commercials were okay. There was one that stood out as the best though. Here you go for those that may have missed it. Those aqua jackets tho....That pretty much summed up the best moment of the Super Bowl. You’re welcome. A do want to congratulate the Miami Dolphins for winning the Bridgestone Clutch Performance Play of the year. Here is Drake’s speech from the NFL Honors Awards show. Two class acts right there representing the Miami Dolphins. Oh, and just because it was that amazing (no matter if Brady stated he doesn’t consider that game a loss and the two Patriots’ fans who went through my December Facebook posts this morning mocking our team...stay classy Pat’s fans) here is the Miami Miracle one more time. This will never get old. Our season didn’t turn out so great, but we had some amazing moments and made NFL History and I was part of it. Nobody, and I mean nobody , will ever convince me that play meant nothing. You did indeed lose that game Brady. You’ve probably already seen the news about Tannehill, but reports are they plan to move on from him. I will be a bit sad when that does happen. I know he is not our future, but he did work hard for our team and had some horrific coaching and just overall bad luck during this time with us. A part of me wishes he could stay one more year till we draft a quarterback in 2020 because not sure who will be our starter next year if Flores doesn’t like any quarterbacks from this upcoming draft. But, that’s probably not happening and I’m going to have faith in our Grier and Flores that they will make the right decisions.Final ThoughtsI’m happy the Super Bowl has come and gone. Atlanta can get back to normal again and we can all enjoy the short break from football. Miami is now the next host for the next Super Bowl. If you missed the hype video tweeted out today, here you go. The next few weeks will a bit boring (news wise) but we at least can follow along as the Miami Dolphins start to build their new coaching staff. Other than that, we have the NFL Scouting Combine on Feb. 26, the franchise-tag deadline on March 5and free agency in March as well. I’m not expecting too much to happen during that time, but who knows. I am excited to see what happens in the upcoming draft in April. Be ready to have your Twitter feed be filled with nothing but mock drafts. Definitely won’t be getting any from me, but it is interesting to see what everyone believes will happen. Since the next few weeks will be slow, what are some topics you all want from me? I’m thinking some positive/fun topics would be interesting. Let me know in the comments. I’d really appreciate any feedback.Hope you all tune in this afternoon and let’s welcome our new coach Brian Flores.Fins Up!

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