With the Dolphins off on Tuesday before they begin their preparation for Sunday's game against New England, here are some final observations from the disappointing loss at Kansas City.

-- CB Jamar Fletcher didn't have a great game on Sunday, particularly on one series when he was beat on a deep pass and then was beat inside by Johnnie Morton on a touchdown pass. But he certainly wasn't the worst player on the field against the Chiefs — that probably was safety Arturo Freeman — and Coach Dave Wannstedt stood up for Fletcher after the game.

"For the most part Jamar played OK," Wannstedt said. "The was some miscommunication on the long pass from the standpoint of much help he was going to get. He didn't play any worse than anybody else on defense. The minute somebody completes a pass, everybody points a finger at Jamar, and that's not fair."

-- Rookie tight end Randy McMichael had his quietest game of the season, and the Chiefs had a lot to do with that. The Chiefs focused on jamming McMichael at the line of scrimmage, even if that meant holding him at times.

-- One of the big questions regarding the 48-30 loss is how much of a difference cornerback Patrick Surtain would have made had he been able to play. Wannstedt, for his part, refused to guess.

"I don't know," the coach said. "Pat is one of our better players; we know that."

-- Quarterback Jay Fiedler put up some big numbers (310 yards) and made his share of nice throws, but he also showed the type of impatience that's gotten him in trouble before. Fiedler needs to avoid the temptation of trying to do too much with his passing because he's simply not that kind of a passer.

Said Wannstedt: "At times he made some nice throws; at times he forced some things."

Wannstedt also said Fiedler's finger injury, sustained in the victory over the Jets, did not have any effect on Fiedler's performance.

-- Wannstedt was happy with the effort his players put forth, and has a hard time believing the Dolphins fell victim to the "sandwich" game theory because the Chiefs fell between games against the Jets and New England.

"I hate to think about that," Wannstedt said of the "sandwich" theory. "As a head coach, I was looking for things last week to try to create a crisis. After the fact, it might be easy for somebody to say that. How much bearing it had because it was between New England and a big week against the Jets, I don't know. I'd be disappointed if it was a factor."

-- Ricky Williams wound up with only 14 carries, and don't think Wannstedt didn't notice. One reason he didn't run more was that Kansas City was crowding the line of scrimmage and almost daring the Dolphins to pass.

Still, Williams is the Dolphins' best offensive player, and he needs to carry the ball more often. End of story.

Dolphins Report Top Stories