It’s sad that it’s taken an opposing teams upstart QB to draw fans, but that appears to be the case Sunday when the Tim Tebow train comes to town, with the Denver Broncos hooked up to it.
Tebow makes his first start of 2011 Sunday, and it comes against a Dolphins team that has yet to win a game in 2011 at 0-5. Let’s not boost the Broncos up all that much, as they are just 1-4 entering Sunday, and 0-2 on the road.
With that, here’s Sunday’s keys along with a prediction to see if the Fins can finally get in the win column.
1. Run the ball – The Dolphins haven’t run the ball much this year, but against a defense like the Broncos, they should be able to get some decent chunks of yards throughout. Of course Denver knows that, and with Matt Moore under center, you can bet the Broncos are going to start the game daring the Fins to throw. Nevertheless, if the Dolphins can’t gain yards on the ground, it’s going to be a long day for the Dolphins and a likely 0-6 mark when it’s over.
2. A Fast Start – Like in Cleveland in week three, the Dolphins best shot to get a win is to play ahead, and their best shot at a win was that day in Cleveland when they led 10-0 before the Browns came storming back. The Dolphins rank 30th in the league with 15.0 points per game and are tied for 30th with six touchdowns. An early TD can put some confidence back on the side of the Fins, and could also pressure Tebow into some early mistakes, which would be as welcome sight to the D.
3. Win One for Tony – Rumors are again flying that a loss Sunday could mark the end of the Tony Sparano era in Miami. It’s likely unless the team has a remarkable turnaround he won’t be back in 2012 anyway, but if the team wants him around till January, they need to start winning games, and Sunday would be the best time to start. We will see if the veterans can get the youngsters fired up enough to try and save the coach, which in turn means getting a huge win.
Prediction – Tebow gets the start for the Broncos, while the Dolphins may be looking for a new coach after this week if they lose. Tebow hasn’t been great when he’s played, but he does find a knack for making things happen, and this week he plays a D that has had major issues stopping the big plays and getting to the QB. Tebow will do enough, while the Fins are heading towards a 2-3 win season. Denver 29 Miami 23
Follow Matt Loede on Twitter @MattNFLGG