As the Dolphins kickoff the 2023 NFL Season in Week 1 in Los Angeles the hype train on this team is already off and running. But is this team really built for a Super Bowl run, and how will we know what to make of the opening game?
To help Dolphins fans stay focussed, and maybe grounded we’ve put together our three things to look out for to see if this team has made progress from last season.
WEEK 1 THINGS TO WATCH: TUA
An easy one, but remember last season against the Chargers, Tua had one of his worst games of the season going 10/28 – 35.7% – 145 yards – 1 – 0. Those kind of numbers won’t cut it if the Dolphins want to make a run at the Super Bowl. One down game is fine, but string them together and we’ve got issues.
So look for Tua to improve that completion percentage, upgrade on the explosive plays and look more comfortable in year two of Mike McDaniel’s offensive scheme.
WILL THE DOLPHINS RUN THE BALL
The easiest way to keep pressure, and players, off of QB1 is to run the damn ball. The Dolphins didn’t do it enough last year, even though they were pretty successful when they did. So will we see a more balanced approach from week 1 this year, or will that still get lost as the Dolphins focus on their speedy receivers?
Last year Josh Boyer was overmatched as DC without the help of Brian Flores, and Gerald Alexander. Rumours of him losing the play calling midway through the 2021 season definitely seem true now that we saw how bad the D performed under him in 2022.
Now Vic Fangio takes over the helm, and is one of the best defensive minds in the game. But how will the players adjust from a hyper-aggressive blitz attack, to a zone-based confuse the QB long enough for the DL to get sacks? Time will tell, and this one will likely take a number of weeks to play out. But week 1 will be our first real chance to see how this is progressing.