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Old 09-08-2012   #1
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Default ProFootballFocus, Three To Focus On -- Miami@Houston


3TFO: Dolphins @ Texans, Week 1

Gordon McGuinness | 2012/09/06
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While every team enters the season with the same record, some are always more geared for a Super Bowl run. That’s very true in this case as the Houston Texans, fresh off the back of their first ever postseason appearance in a year filled with key injuries, look to build on that and go a step or two further. After getting as far as they did with, then rookie, T.J. Yates at quarterback, they have plenty of reasons to be optimistic, despite losing Mario Williams in free agency. Enough reasons, in fact, that they got the third spot in our analysts’ Preseason Power Rankings. For the Miami Dolphins it’s been an offseason of change. New head coach in Joe Philbin, new quarterback in Ryan Tannehill and a switch of defensive schemes as they go from a 3-4 to a 4-3 front. That gives Miami fans something to be excited about for the first time in a few seasons and, while they don’t have the look of a Super Bowl contender about them in the way the Texans do, they still have enough solid pieces on their roster to have a reasonable season. With that in mind, let’s take a look at the three key areas to focus on in this Week 1 matchup.

Houston’s Wide Receivers vs. Miami’s Cornerbacks
After an injury plagued 2011 season, Andre Johnson is back and ready to prove that he’s still one of the premier wide receivers in the NFL. Our second-highest graded player at the position in 2010, Johnson still managed to pull in 46 catches in the nine games he played in the 2011 regular and postseason. Opposite Johnson, the reliable Kevin Walter returns and, while he may lose snaps to Lestar Jean and Keshawn Martin as the season wears on, the fact that he has dropped just nine passes since 2008 should make him a reliable target for Matt Schaub again.
The big news in the Miami secondary recently was Vontae Davis’ surprise trade to Indianapolis for a 2013 second-round draft choice. He’s replaced by former Arizona Cardinal Richard Marshall who, after a rough start to the season, finished 2011 strong allowing just 92 yards through the air from Week 9 onward. Elsewhere in the Miami secondary, they’ll be hoping Sean Smith can recapture the form that saw him ranked as our ninth-best cornerback in 2010. He struggled in 2011 and found himself a frequent target of opposing quarterbacks, with 104 passes thrown into his coverage.

Houston’s Pass Rush vs. Miami’s Offensive Line
The Texans’ got used to life without Mario Williams earlier than expected after he missed most of the 2011 season due to injury, so his departure wasn’t a deal-breaker. While both Connor Barwin and Brooks Reed put up good numbers (they combined for 101 total pressures in 2011), neither was overly dominant in how fast they were able to apply pressure. That prompted the team to use their first-round pick on outside linebacker Whitney Mercilus, and they’ll be hoping he can add something extra to that pass rush. Even more dominant in the role of pass rushers in 2011 were their defensive ends Antonio Smith and J.J. Watt, who were our second- and fifth-highest-graded pass rushers at their position.
With Houston hoping to apply pressure to Miami’s shiny new signal caller, it’s up to the Dolphins’ offensive line to keep the rookie upright and, after two straight years of being our second-highest graded offensive tackle, Jake Long looked human in 2011. He missed time with injury and gave up more pressure than we’re used to seeing from the former Michigan Wolverine. An MCL sprain in practice this preseason caused concern for the team, but he looks good to go in Week 1. Rookie Jonathan Martin steps into the starting spot at right tackle and, while he’ll likely have his struggles in his first year in the league, he’ll have to go some distance to be more disappointing than the now retired Marc Colombo was last season.

Arian Foster vs. Miami’s Defense
Despite not putting up the same numbers he did in 2010, Arian Foster still played well enough last season to finish the year as our fifth-highest graded running back. A quick delve into our Elusive Rating Signature Stat, which measures a runner’s success beyond the help of their blockers, shows that Foster was our 13th most elusive runner in 2011. He earned this spot with 25 missed tackles forced in the running game and 12 as a receiver, so they’ll be hoping for more of the same in 2012.
Starting linebackers in Miami, Karlos Dansby, Kevin Burnett and Koa Misi combined to miss 24 tackles in 2011, with none finishing higher than 22nd at their position in our Tackling Efficiency Signature Stat. While that’s not quite at the low standard of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers last season, it’s still not good enough when you’re going up against someone of Foster’s caliber who has shown just how badly he can punish you if you aren’t careful.

Last edited by Lucky; 09-08-2012 at 07:23 PM. Reason: Playoff got a hall pass
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Old 09-08-2012   #2
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Default Re: ProFootballFocus, Three To Focus On -- Miami@Houston

OK, I clicked on read more but there wasn't anything else to read. Nonetheless, I liked the article.
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Old 09-08-2012   #3
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Default Re: ProFootballFocus, Three To Focus On -- Miami@Houston

Good read. Thanks for posting. MSR.
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Old 09-08-2012   #4
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Default Re: ProFootballFocus, Three To Focus On -- Miami@Houston

I guess Playoff got permission to post this article in its entirety.

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Enough reasons, in fact, that they got the third spot in our analysts’ Preseason Power Rankings.
I thought this site had the Texans somewhere between 8 and 9 wins? Now, they're the #3 ranked team? I don't get it.
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Last edited by Lucky; 09-08-2012 at 07:24 PM.
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Old 09-08-2012   #5
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Default Re: ProFootballFocus, Three To Focus On -- Miami@Houston

Hold it, stop stop STOP stop stop.

This just in......

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As if the Jets' rough preseason weren't enough, Mark Sanchez has another reason to take heat. (celeb Eva girlfriend)
I hope they don't cancel games tomorrow.

EDIT: Just to keep the board in good standing: Link
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Old 09-08-2012   #6
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Default Re: ProFootballFocus, Three To Focus On -- Miami@Houston

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Originally Posted by Lucky View Post
I thought this site had the Texans somewhere between 8 and 9 wins? Now, they're the #3 ranked team? I don't get it.
I didn't see the 8/9 wins pick, but here's their Preseason Power Rankings: https://www.profootballfocus.com/blo...ngs-preseason/

I'm not totally familiar with their updated website, yet.
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Old 09-08-2012   #7
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Default Re: ProFootballFocus, Three To Focus On -- Miami@Houston

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Originally Posted by Showtime100 View Post
Hold it, stop stop STOP stop stop.

This just in......



I hope they don't cancel games tomorrow.

EDIT: Just to keep the board in good standing: Link
LOL. From that article. LMAO on this one.

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Here's another possibility: Maybe Mark Sanchez is just an average quarterback in a below-average offense, and if he plied his trade in Jacksonville or Tennessee, we would have heard very little about him after he left USC for the NFL in 2009. Sanchez has never finished higher than 28th in the league in Football Outsiders' per-play opponent-adjusted metrics (DVOA), and never higher than 20th in FO's season-cumulative DYAR stats. Forget the idea that his next level is the top: Sanchez still has to look up to see league average. Sanchez's potential "greatness" is trumped up by those who believe that quarterback wins are meaningful, and those who believe that New York needs a marquee quarterback at all times.
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Old 09-08-2012   #8
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Default Re: ProFootballFocus, Three To Focus On -- Miami@Houston

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Originally Posted by Thorn View Post
LOL. From that article. LMAO on this one.


This is an 'ouch' kind of moment if I ever read one..

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Maybe Mark Sanchez will never become "elite," because it just isn't in him to do so, and shouldn't he take advantage of the good life while he can? After all, not every woman is monumentally impressed with Sanchez, and it seems that the more they understand the game, the less overwhelmed they are.
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Old 09-08-2012   #9
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Default Re: ProFootballFocus, Three To Focus On -- Miami@Houston

Sorry for the hijack....my fault....carry on.
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Old 09-08-2012   #10
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Default Re: ProFootballFocus, Three To Focus On -- Miami@Houston

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Old 09-08-2012   #11
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Default Re: ProFootballFocus, Three To Focus On -- Miami@Houston

Note it says "galpal" -- Sanchez is still a question mark.
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Old 09-08-2012   #12
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Default Re: ProFootballFocus, Three To Focus On -- Miami@Houston

Its gonna be a long day for the fish on both sides of the ball ....
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Old 09-08-2012   #13
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Default Re: ProFootballFocus, Three To Focus On -- Miami@Houston

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Its gonna be a long day for the fish on both sides of the ball ....
I really hope we just kick the sh!+ out of them, flex our muscles like good teams are supposed to do.
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Old 09-08-2012   #14
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Default Re: ProFootballFocus, Three To Focus On -- Miami@Houston

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I really hope we just kick the sh!+ out of them, flex our muscles like good teams are supposed to do.
So do I. I want this to be like the Tampa Bay game last year or the first Titans game. Just a beat down.
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Old 09-08-2012   #15
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I can't sleep.

I have that same feeling I had as a kid on Christmas night.
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Old 09-09-2012   #16
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Default Re: ProFootballFocus, Three To Focus On -- Miami@Houston

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So do I. I want this to be like the Tampa Bay game last year or the first Titans game. Just a beat down.
I want to see the Texans with 200+ rushing yards and a 100% TD ratio in the redzone .... and the Phish end up with negative yards offensively and be shut out.
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Old 09-09-2012   #17
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Default Re: ProFootballFocus, Three To Focus On -- Miami@Houston

I'd really like to see the Texans get the ball to LeStar Jean and Martin. We need to get those guys going for the rest of the season and I think they got the majority of their in game play time with the second string offense.

If Foster is not 100% I wouldn't play him. Let his knee rest, it's a long season.
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