Okay, so maybe we're getting ahead of ourselves with that statement. In fact, we know we're getting ahead of ourselves by mentioning the Dolphins and the Super Bowl in the same breath.
A little over a month ago, when we first started 4th and Fail, we kicked it off with a post about the Dolphins' crushing last-minute loss to the Texans. We asked if that loss would cause the 'phins to "spiral into oblivion" for the season, or if they would bounce back and contend in a "Brady-less AFC East."
After today's game-winning march down the field against the lowly Raiders, the answer to that question seems to be clear: they will contend.
It's not often we gladly accept a slice of humble pie, but this is one of those instances. At the time, we thought that the loss to Houston would, sadly, be a crushing loss for the 'phins. We'd like to apologize for ever doubting this up and coming team.
With today's win, Miami improved to 6-4 on the season. Let's take a look at what they've accomplished since that loss to Houston, which dropped them to 2-3 on the year.
Since that loss on October 12, the 'phins have gone 4-1, including four straight victories. During that winning streak, they haven't allowed 20 or more points in a game. This team has come alive, folks.
They are currently tied for the best division record in the AFC East, at 3-1, trailing the Jets by virtue of overall record and head-to-head tiebreakers. They are also currently tied for what would be the 6th and final playoff spot.
Remaining, the 'phins have what looks to be the easiest schedule left to play. Here's how it looks:
- Week 12: hosting the Brady-less Pats.
- Week 13: visiting St. Louis.
- Week 14: at Buffalo (0-3 in the AFC East).
- Week 15: playing host to the 49ers.
- Week 16: at Kansas City.
- Week 17: at the Jets, in a game that could decided the division. (Who saw that one coming before the season started?)
We know you can never chalk up victories by looking at the schedule, but each one of those games can be won by Miami.
This team is out to prove something. Chad Pennington is out to prove he is still an NFL starter (thanks again, New York, we appreciate you getting rid of him). Ted Ginn is out to prove he's not a bust, and is emerging as a star on this team (40-yard touchdown run today).
So while we may not be talkin' Super Bowl with these Dolphins just yet, Miami fans have reason to be talkin' playoffs. Playoffs?!?! Yes, Miami, Playoffs!