ReFo: Cowboys @ Dolphins, Preseason Week 3
There’s a lot expected out of both the Miami Dolphins and Dallas Cowboys this year, and so both teams attempted to put their best foot forward as the starters prepared to rest up for the regular season.
The outcome was a tight first half where the Dolphins’ defensive line imposed itself as their offense failed to capitalize after getting into some good positions. For Dallas the concern is how their line struggled to hold up man-on-man, but they’ll be encouraged that, what on paper looks like a house built on sand defense, didn’t crumble, as players fought for their spot on the depth chart and place on the roster.
Let’s take a look at some of the most noteworthy plays and remember, you can get all the grades, stats and snaps for this game and all others, with a PFF Premium subscription.
Dallas Cowboys — Performances of Note
Left Guards, -5.7 combined
Breakdown: This wasn’t a great day for the Dallas line as the physical Dolphins front imposed their will on them. This was especially apparent with whoever they had at left guard, with both Mackenzy Bernadeau (-3.6) and Ronald Leary (-2.1) struggling.
Signature Play: For Leary it was the first offensive play of the game where Jared Odrick breezed by him. While for Bernadeau his allowing of vertical penetration on a stretch play at 13.46 in Q2 ruined the play and was indicative of the lack of control he had throughout the game.
Tyler Patmon, CB, +3.3
Breakdown: Forced a fumble and walked away with two picks. Could you ask for much more? On a desperate defense playmakers can be a godsend and Patmon proved he had a knack for it, including his blink and you’ll miss him pick-six.
Signature Play: It was to be the pick-six with 7:50 to go in the game as he isn’t fooled by the ghost motion, breaking on the ball and putting points on the board.
Ryan Williams, RB, +2.6
Breakdown: There was a worrying sight when Williams had to leave the field before time had expired with another apparent injury, but all being well he once again caught the preseason eye. The blocking in front of him wasn’t great, but he didn’t need it to be as he looked decisive and explosive.
Signature Stat: Earned a positive grade on 8-out-of-12 rushing attempts.
Miami Dolphins — Performances of Note
Cameron Wake, DE, +3.1
Breakdown: Gave Doug Free a horrible evening as he beat him for two sacks on just 16 pass rushing attempts. Consider this a cameo because history has taught us to expect even more from the magnificent Wake.
Signature Play: With 39 seconds to go in the first half Wake beats Free on his inside shoulder, drawing a holding penalty that would be declined because he would also pick up the sack.
Ryan Tannehill, QB, -2.3
Breakdown: There’s a lot of talk about chemistry when looking at the relationship between Tannehill and Mike Wallace, but no amount of chemistry will overcome his horrible overthrow that essentially took points off the board. More than that Tannehill was careless, with Bruce Carter dropping one pick and Patmon gifted another. Outside of that, Tannehill played well but three moments like that will lose you games.
Signature Play: With 4.41 left in the first half Tannehill overthrows a wide open Mike Wallace for what would have been a touchdown.
Branden Albert, LT, +3.3
Breakdown: I detailed elsewhere the struggles of both right guards so how about some good news. Albert looked motivated, working down the line to make plays he had no right to and finishing off blocks to leave defenders prone. He’s the star of this unit and will need to show up every week.
Signature Stat: Didn’t allow a single pressure all game long.
PFF Game Ball
It would be rude to go in any other direction than Tyler Patmon who made more plays than anyone, really catching the eye in the process.
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