ONE LAST LOOK

With the Dolphins off on Tuesday before they resume practice for Sunday's game against the rival Jets, it's a good time to clean out the notebook from the game against the Colts.

Among the items you may have missed:

-- The biggest reason the Dolphins beat Indianapolis on Sunday: holding them to one touchdown in five trips inside the 20-yard line.

The Dolphins allowed opponents to score touchdowns on 22 of 40 trips inside the 20-yard line last year and ranked among the worst teams in the league in that category. But they stiffened defensively on Sunday.

The Colts reached the Miami 7-yard line in the second quarter but were held to a field goal; they reached the Miami 1-yard line in the third quarter but were stopped on fourth down; they scored a touchdown on their third trip inside the 20; they were held to a field goal after reaching the Miami 6 in the fourth quarter; and they again were stopped on downs on the last drive of the game.

-- The Dolphins were a little surprised to see Indy open the game with a four-wideout formation, something that the Colts don't do very often. Of course, the absence of tight end Marcus Pollard probably factored in the Colts' decision.

"It's a universal them on offense," said Coach Dave Wannstedt, pointing to New England and Oakland both going to spread offenses when they played Pittsburgh.

-- Wannstedt praised the clutch punting of Mark Royals who came up with kicks of 49 and 47 yards after the Dolphins' last two drives stalled. On the season, Royals is averaging over 47 yards per punt. Impressive.

-- Defensive end David Bowens, who has been out because of a broken hand, was ready to go last Sunday, but Wannstedt decided to hold him out again. One factor is the fact the Dolphins have plenty of depth at defensive end, with the likes of Jason Taylor, Adewale Ogunleye, Jay Williams and Rob Burnett.

-- The secondary gave up a lot of yardage against the Colts, but it succeeded in coming up with interceptions, something that was a problem last season. After leading the NFL with 28 interceptions in 2000, the Dolphins recorded only 17 last season.

After two games this season, the Dolphins already have four picks, putting them on pace to finish with 32. That wins football games.


Dolphins Report Top Stories