Final Game 2 Observations

The big showdown against the New York is only a few days away and you can make sure there'll be plenty of hype before kickoff. Before we start focusing on that game, though, let's take one final look at the impressive 14-10 victory at Minnesota.

-- This one was all about the defense, starting with a secondary that is playing lights out. The same secondary that was such a concern heading into the season.

-- Wow, is that really Jason Allen out there? He's been spending a lot of time talking to the media in recent days, and the message is pretty consistent. From his end, Allen has been consistent in saying he's thrived because he's finally settled in at one position. Whatever the reason, his play has been the most pleasant surprise so far this season.

-- At linebacker, Karlos Dansby turned in another stellar performance and his all-around ability just keeps showing up. That tackle he made on Adrian Peterson's fourth-and-goal was some kind of impressive.

-- Then again, he had help from Vontae Davis, who already is looking like a big-time cornerback. He's been a tackling machine from the time he joined the Dolphins and now his coverage skills are starting to match that.

-- Sean Smith got some playing time at Minnesota after not playing at Buffalo and he also made some plays. If he can rediscover his rookie form, the Dolphins suddenly find themselves with great depth at cornerback.

-- Cameron Wake again was a factor in the pass rush. But that's really no longer a story. It's a given.

-- Switching to the offense, the Dolphins are playing really conservatively and one gets the feeling it's because of how well their defense has been playing. Then again, it would be nice to see the Dolphins let it loose and try to pile it on a little bit.

-- That said, it was a major relief to see Brian Hartline have a good game because he really had been struggling.

-- Tight end Anthony Fasano was a non-factor in the passing game, but that was because he spent a good deal of the day helping out in pass protection.

-- Speaking of pass protection, Jake Long had a tremendous game. Forget any reporter suggesting Jared Allen made his share of plays, Long owned him. Period.

-- In the return game, Clifton Smith again did nothing, which was very disappointing considering he made the Pro Bowl in 2008 and it was hoped he would bring a spark to the Dolphins. Truth is, he really didn't get any help from his blockers, but apparently the coaches felt he could have done more because he was waived on Tuesday.


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