ReFo: Dolphins @ Bears, Week 7
In a meeting of two sides searching for identity it was Miami that looked far more likely to become a playoff-bound team that could challenge for their division while the Bears looked far more rudderless.
In truth, the score line might not even have done justice to how one-sided this game was and the Dolphins were more than worthy winners. The win moves Miami back to .500 and gives them the chance to move in the right direction but drops Chicago to 3-4.
Let’s see who stood out for each side.
Miami Dolphins – Performances of Note
Mike Pouncey, G: -3.4
Breakdown: Since returning to the lineup in his new position at right guard, Pouncey has now earned two negative grades on the bounce. Struggled in this game with run blocking especially.
Signature Play: Q1, 15:00. The game started badly for Pouncey, driven back into the quarterback for a sack by Jeremiah Ratliff on the first offensive snap.
Cameron Wake, DE: +3.7
Breakdown: Cameron Wake is still one of the league’s most fearsome pass rushers. He was a problem for the Bears all day, and completed a pass-rushing trifecta play, notching a sack, forced fumble and recovery all on the same play.
Signature Stat: Collected five total pressures – a sack, a hit and three hurries – three more than any other Miami defender.
Ryan Tannehill, QB: -0.4
Breakdown: Opening the game with 14 straight completions is the best mark among QBs in the league this season, but Tannehill threw at least four off-target passes in that sequence that hurt the chance for yards after the catch and in general was far from great in this game. His raw stats may look elite, but he was closer to average overall.
Signature Stat: When not pressured in this game had a passer rating of 128.2
Chicago Bears – Performances of Note
Matt Forte, RB: +1.9
Breakdown: Entering this game Matt Forte was leading the league in receptions. Not among running backs – the entire league. If there was one bright spark on offense for the Bears it was Forte, and he scored both of their touchdowns, one rushing and one receiving.
Signature Stat: Caught all six passes thrown his way for 60 yards and a score.
Jared Allen, DE: -3.4
Breakdown: He may have earned himself a sack, but this was a tired looking performance from one of the league’s premier pass rushers over the past decade. Allen was controlled by Branden Albert for most of the game both as a pass rusher and run defender.
Signature Play: Q3, 0:36. Miami went in for a touchdown late in the third quarter as Albert controlled Allen and prevented him getting to the running back on the play.
Jay Cutler, QB: -2.2
Breakdown: In the never-ending rollercoaster ride of Jay Cutler, this was ‘Bad Jay’ coming to play. Cutler was inaccurate, anxious in the pocket and forcing throws at one time or other in this game.
Signature Stat: Passer rating under pressure (77.6) was almost the same as when he wasn’t (73.4), largely because he seemed pressured on plays even when the pocket was clean.
PFF Game Ball
Some of the players mentioned above had deserving cases for the game ball, Wake in particular, but instead we’re giving it to somebody I didn’t mention – LT Branden Albert. Miami’s big-money free agent earned his salary in this game with a +6.9 grade.
Follow Sam on Twitter: @PFF_Sam