Dolphins have chance to drive Baltimore stark Raven mad

By Adam Sweeney  |   Tuesday, December 30, 2008  |  Comments( 3 )

Miami Dolphins
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The shine might wear off a bit for the AFC East champion Miami Dolphins if they can't exact revenge on the Baltimore Ravens, who beat them 27-13 in Week 7, in this week's wild-card playoff round. While Miami fans are probably still giddy over their team's shocking division title, they should be at least a bit concerned about the Ravens' ability to excel in a hostile road environment. The Dolphins already know as much.

Commentary: Some will claim this game is a battle of contrasting styles, citing Baltimore as the more opportunistic team. Miami is just as feisty, however; the difference is that the Dolphins don't have as many household defensive names as the Ravens. Miami actually had a better turnover differential, and was only four behind Baltimore in takeaways during the regular season. Will that translate once the pressure of the playoffs really starts bearing down on the Miami players? It's tough to say. But the Dolphins have Chad Pennington, Joey Porter and a group of players who haven't been distracted by the growing expectations this season has brought with it.

Watching Baltimore might feel like looking into a mirror for Miami. They both have talented quarterbacks who have played within their game, offenses built around strong running attacks and defenses that give passers fits. Sometimes the toughest battle comes from playing an opponent like yourself. Baltimore is going to have to learn how to deal with that. This clearly is not the same team the Ravens faced earlier in the season; that said, Baltimore is much better than it was when it beat the Dolphins.

Fan Pulse: Would Zach Thomas and Jason Taylor be be happy or bitter about the team's success? Dolphins fans are debating that.

Fantasy Football Commentary: All Pennington did was set a career high in passing yards after being released by the New York Jets in the summer. Consider that Pennington was nowhere near anybody's top 15 QBs on fantasy cheat sheets, and that makes his feat even more impressive.

Injury Watch:
Cornerback Will Allen is questionable with a groin injury. We will keep you posted.
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About Adam Sweeney

Adam Sweeney spent 4 years as an opinions and arts & entertainment columnist with the Lone Star Lutheran, also working with Sports Along with his work on Realfootball 365 he currently is a contributor for Film School Rejects, SLAM Online,, and C-Heads Magazine.
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