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  • Martz's call defense on 3 and 27!!??

    NFL.com wire reports



    MIAMI (Oct. 24, 2004) -- Jay Fiedler threw a game-clinching touchdown pass, then sprinted the length of the field to join his teammates in an end zone celebration, waving his index finger as he ran.

    No, the Miami Dolphins aren't No. 1. But they do have victory No. 1.

    Winless no more, Miami jump-started its sputtering offense with a succession of big plays and occasional trickery to beat the explosive St. Louis Rams at their own game Sunday, 31-14.

    "You almost forgot what it felt like," Fiedler said. "We were down in the dungeon of the NFL, and we were able to play a full game. This is a big victory for us."

    After enduring the worst start in their 39-year history, the Dolphins (1-6) took out their frustration on the Rams (4-3), who had at least five players hurt. The much-maligned Fiedler threw for two touchdowns, embattled coach Dave Wannstedt made some risky calls that paid off, and Miami held the Rams' high-powered offense in check.

    "Enough is enough," said defensive end David Bowens, who said last week he expected Miami to win its final 10 games. "At some point you've got to draw a line in the sand and be a man about it."

    The Dolphins are the last NFL team to win this season.

    "Every dog has its day, and today was their day," Rams defensive tackle Damione Lewis said. "You never know. They could run off six straight wins now. That's the NFL."

    Fiedler was booed during the pregame introductions, then went 13 for 17 for 203 yards. He shrugged off five sacks and threw touchdown passes of 42 yards to Randy McMichael and 71 yards to Chris Chambers, with the latter clinching the win.


    Randy McMichael's 42-yard catch and run put the Dolphins ahead for good.
    The conservative Wannstedt, his job in jeopardy, took some uncharacteristic gambles to keep St. Louis guessing. A 48-yard pass by receiver Marty Booker set up the game's first score, and Miami also pulled off a fake punt and tried a halfback pass.

    "We opened up the playbook today," McMichael said. "Coach Wannstedt said he was going to run them all, and they all came out positive."

    Miami, which entered with a league-high 17 turnovers, committed none. A replay review overturned a fumble lost by Chambers in the fourth quarter, and instead the drive produced a field goal for a 24-7 lead.

    "The guys play hard every week," Wannstedt said. "We just didn't make as many mistakes today."

    The Rams' lone turnover was costly, with Marc Bulger intercepted in the end zone when they were threatening to tie the game in the third quarter. St. Louis totaled 372 yards but converted only 2 of 13 third-down situations.

    The Dolphins dominated on special teams with ferocious hitting, including a block by rookie Tony Bua that took out two Rams on a 20-yard punt return.

    "A lot of guys were playing with their hair on fire," Bua said. "When you're 0-6, you're willing to do anything to get a win."

    Although the crowd was announced as a sellout, the stands were half empty. But fans did plenty of cheering for a change, including when a trick play helped Miami score first.

    Booker took a handoff on a reverse, then threw deep to Chambers. On the next play, Sammy Morris scored Miami's first rushing touchdown of the season on an 8-yard run.

    With the score 7-7, Fiedler foiled a blitz on third and 27 and found McMichael streaking down the middle for a touchdown with 22 seconds left in the half.

    "That's the only time I've ever called a play on defense, and it goes for a touchdown," Rams coach Mike Martz said. "I guess that's why I don't coach defense."

    The Rams, who staged come-from-behind victories in their past two games, tried to rally again and made the score 24-14 on Bulger's 15-yard touchdown pass to Shaun McDonald with 4:51 left.

    Miami answered with the clincher 27 seconds later. Fiedler threw a short third-down pass to Chambers, who found a seam and sprinted to the end zone.

    "Sometimes you can overcome mistakes early," Bulger said. "But sometimes you wait too late to get anything going, and that's what happened to us."

    Game notes
    Five Rams left the game with injuries: CB Dwight Anderson (right shoulder), LB Brandon Chillar (hamstring), DE Bryce Fisher (chest), WR Dane Looker (leg bruise) and T Grant Willliams (neck burner).
    Dolphins LB Junior Seau sat out the second half with a groin injury.
    Dolphins T Wade Smith, who started the first two games this season, was inactive for the first time.
    The Rams are 0-4 in Miami since their last win there in 1976.

  • #2
    Re: Martz's call defense on 3 and 27!!??

    Two points ought to be made here. 1st he shouldn't have accepted the penalty and he should have let it be 4th and 18 and then could have let them try a 50 yarder. That way he wouldn't have found himself trying to call a play to justify what he was thinking when he idiotically accepted one of the two penalties.

    2nd, and one which I doubt, maybe he was preparing MarmieListless for his eventual firing by taking over play calling.

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Martz's call defense on 3 and 27!!??

      I believe that it would have been fourth and 10 if he declined the penalty. The 10 yards was marked off from the point of the foul, which was in the backfield near fiedler, not at the line of scrimmage. If i am wrong on that i apologize in advance.

      They would have gone on 4th and 10 and i would rather take my chances on 3rd and 28.

      I think many of the people that are complaining about the blitz call (this is not directed at you jason) have complained that marmie is not aggressive enough on defense. I dont think the issue was the defensive call, its how do you send 8 guys against the worst offensive line in the nfl and not even get close to the qb? We are playing matador defense against the tight end every week.

      general counsel

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Martz's call defense on 3 and 27!!??

        I don't have a problem with Martz's call. If the defense holds we get some awesome field position. At some point in time, the players HAVE to make a play.

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Martz's call defense on 3 and 27!!??

          But the call was designed with Bryce Fisher covering Randy McMichael. That is a problem in itself. I'd be all for it, if Fisher was lining up across from Manumalauna, but this was McMichael. It never should have been drawn up that way.
          The more things change, the more they stay the same.

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Martz's call defense on 3 and 27!!??

            Well, there wasn't a LB in sight backing up a D lineman either. Polley missed the play call. Maybe the call was wrong, or right. Not sure. However, Polley's head wasn't in that game Sunday and he's one of my favorite defensive players. No one is saying anything about the stupid personal foul he took when hitting that Dolphin out of bounds.

            Maybe the play calling wasn't spectacular but to hang the whole thing on Martz is ridiculous.

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Martz's call defense on 3 and 27!!??

              Originally posted by Tx
              Maybe the play calling wasn't spectacular but to hang the whole thing on Martz is ridiculous.
              Who's hanging the whole thing on Martz? I just don't think it was the right call to put coverage of McMichael in the hands (and feet) of B. Fisher.
              The more things change, the more they stay the same.

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Martz's call defense on 3 and 27!!??

                alright.....

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Martz's call defense on 3 and 27!!??

                  You can fault Fisher for not covering McMichael. But there was at least one or two Rams that probably could have tackled McMichael short of the first down and didn't get it done either. And I agree with GC - it doesn't seem like our blitzing players are getting to the QB in time, from what I've seen. I can't tell you the number of times I've seen Rams blitzing and the opposing QB still have five or six seconds in the pocket.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Martz's call defense on 3 and 27!!??

                    Archuleta came over from being out of position and looked like he could have made a hit on the reciever, but apparently he wasn't looking to see if the ball was coming. So when the receiver caught it, he was surprised, and then the guy was gone.

                    Huge mistake by Arch. He's supposed to be the SAFETY on that play, and yet all of our guys were playing up. No backup there.

                    Comment

                    Related Topics

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                    • RamDez
                      Dolphins 31, Rams 14
                      by RamDez
                      Dolphins 31, Rams 14


                      STEVEN WINE

                      Associated Press



                      MIAMI - Jay Fiedler threw a game-clinching touchdown pass, then sprinted the length of the field to join his teammates in an end zone celebration, waving his index finger as he ran.

                      No, the Miami Dolphins aren't No. 1. But they do have victory No. 1.

                      Winless no more, Miami jump-started its sputtering offense with a succession of big plays and occasional trickery to beat the explosive St. Louis Rams at their own game Sunday, 31-14.

                      "You almost forgot what it felt like," Fiedler said. "We were down in the dungeon of the NFL, and we were able to play a full game. This is a big victory for us."

                      After enduring the worst start in their 39-year history, the Dolphins (1-6) took out their frustration on the Rams (4-3), who had at least five players hurt. The much-maligned Fiedler threw for two touchdowns, embattled coach Dave Wannstedt made some risky calls that paid off, and Miami held the Rams' high-powered offense in check.

                      "Enough is enough," said defensive end David Bowens, who said last week he expected Miami to win its final 10 games. "At some point you've got to draw a line in the sand and be a man about it."

                      The Dolphins are the last NFL team to win this season.

                      "Every dog has its day, and today was their day," Rams defensive tackle Damione Lewis said. "You never know. They could run off six straight wins now. That's the NFL."

                      Fiedler was booed during the pregame introductions, then went 13-for-17 for 203 yards. He shrugged off five sacks and threw touchdown passes of 42 yards to Randy McMichael and 71 yards to Chris Chambers, with the latter clinching the win.

                      The conservative Wannstedt, his job in jeopardy, took some uncharacteristic gambles to keep St. Louis guessing. A 48-yard pass by receiver Marty Booker set up the game's first score, and Miami also pulled off a fake punt and tried a halfback pass.

                      "We opened up the playbook today," McMichael said. "Coach Wannstedt said he was going to run them all, and they all came out positive."

                      Miami, which entered with a league-high 17 turnovers, committed none. A replay review overturned a fumble lost by Chambers in the fourth quarter, and instead the drive produced a field goal for a 24-7 lead.

                      "The guys play hard every week," Wannstedt said. "We just didn't make as many mistakes today."

                      The Rams' lone turnover was costly, with Marc Bulger intercepted in the end zone when they were threatening to tie the game in the third quarter. St. Louis totaled 372 yards but converted only two of 13 third-down situations.

                      The Dolphins dominated on special teams with ferocious hitting, including a block by rookie Tony Bua that took...
                      -10-24-2004, 03:40 PM
                    • RamWraith
                      Rams blitzed by 1-6 Miami
                      by RamWraith
                      BY JIM THOMAS
                      Of the Post-Dispatch
                      Sunday, Oct. 24 2004

                      MIAMI -- With the score tied 7-7 and half a minute to go in the first half
                      Sunday, the Miami Dolphins faced a third-and-28 dilemma from the Rams' 42.

                      Rams defensive coordinator Larry Marmie planned to play a soft Cover 2. Keep
                      the receivers in front of you, prevent the big play, and the worst thing that
                      happens is a moderate gain and a field goal.

                      But coach Mike Martz asked Marmie to blitz.

                      ``I said, `Just go after them,' '' Martz recalled later. ``That was the only
                      defense I've called as a head coach, and we gave up a touchdown. How do you
                      like that?''

                      The blitz never got there. Miami quarterback Jay Fiedler found Randy McMichael
                      open over the middle, and with Rams defenders slipping all around him on the
                      grass surface at Pro Player Stadium, McMichael had an easy journey to the end
                      zone. His touchdown gave Miami a 14-7 lead with just 22 seconds remaining until
                      halftime.

                      It was that kind of day for the Rams in a numbing 31-14 loss to the previously
                      winless and offensively inept Dolphins. For the Rams, whatever could go wrong
                      did. At 4-3, they remain atop the NFC West only because Seattle lost to Arizona
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                      The Rams dropped passes and muffed interceptions. They committed several costly
                      penalties. They got fooled on one trick play after another. And they somehow
                      made one of the league's most feeble offenses look potent.

                      ``It was just a comedy of errors,'' Martz said.

                      Except no one in Rams Nation is laughing.

                      ``Obviously, we're upset,'' Martz said. ``This is not what we wanted. It is
                      what it is.''

                      What it is is the type of game that teams with serious playoff aspirations
                      shouldn't have. Especially against a downtrodden team such as Miami.

                      So what happened? There were no easy answers in the locker room.

                      ``You got me,'' offensive guard Adam Timmerman said. ``I don't know. We made so
                      many mistakes -- everywhere.''

                      ``They were more hungry than us, or something,'' defensive tackle Ryan Pickett
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                      Why? ``I have no idea,'' Pickett said. ``I couldn't give you an explanation of
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                      Booed loudly in pregame introductions, Fielder played more like Dan Marino than
                      the NFL's lowest-rated passer entering Sunday's play.

                      ``We played the run real well and broke down in other areas,'' Pickett said.
                      ``We gave them too many big plays. Too many big passing plays. And we had
                      missed tackles. It's just disappointing.''

                      Nearly two-third of Miami's passing yardage came on three big plays:

                      * Wide receiver...
                      -10-25-2004, 04:12 AM
                    • RamWraith
                      Big Plays Costly to Rams Defense
                      by RamWraith
                      Wednesday, October 27, 2004

                      By Nick Wagoner
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                      For a team that ranks toward the bottom of the NFL in total defense it certainly seems like the Rams defense has been pretty good most of this season.

                      Much like the other six games, though, the same problem plagued the defense against Miami on Sunday: Big plays. Every time it appeared the Rams had the Dolphins stopped and set to punt, they came up with something. Usually those plays weren’t simply move the chains plays, but rather score points type of plays.

                      Rams’ coach Mike Martz said the defense must improve in that area after watching Miami post some big numbers in key situations.

                      “We gave up three plays in the passing game worth 160 yards, which ends up being three touchdowns,” Martz said. “I think that is a significant number and obviously, it had an impact in the game.”

                      Those three plays actually add up to 161 yards, but regardless, they all hurt the Rams on the scoreboard and might have cost them a shot at their fifth win heading into the bye week.

                      Perhaps none of those plays was bigger than the one at the end of the first half. After Miami took over at the St. Louis 47, it seemed certain the Dolphins would score, but the defense as it has done many times this season with its back to the wall, got a pair of stops in Miami’s backfield and a penalty to push the Dolphins back to their 42. On third-and-28, quarterback Jay Fiedler picked up on a Rams’ blitz and hit tight end Randy McMichael for a 42-yard touchdown, giving Miami a 14-7 lead at halftime.

                      Martz said the play was his fault, as he tried to take the reins on a defensive play, calling for an all-out blitz on the play.

                      “That was the only defense I have called as a head coach,” Martz said. “And we gave up a touchdown.”

                      The Dolphins ended any hopes the Rams had of a comeback in the fourth quarter when cornerback Travis Fisher slipped and receiver Chris Chambers caught a slant pass in stride for a 71-yard touchdown. That touchdown gave Miami a 31-14 lead and put to rest St. Louis’ hopes of a Seattle-like comeback.

                      The other big play came right away in the first quarter on a reverse pass from receiver Marty Booker to Chambers for a 48-yard gain. That set up running back Sammy Morris’ 8-yard touchdown scamper and put Miami up 7-0. That play worked for the first time all year, as Miami coach Dave Wannstedt said after the game it hadn’t worked, even in practice a single time.

                      Safety Aeneas Williams and his teammates in the secondary struggled to make plays, being burned by a few trick plays and missing some opportunities to make interceptions. The unit did force a fumble, but it was overturned by a Miami challenge.

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                      -10-28-2004, 04:09 AM
                    • RamWraith
                      Hopes of upset dashed
                      by RamWraith
                      By Jim Thomas
                      ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH
                      Monday, Dec. 01 2008
                      It wasn't a blowout. It wasn't an embarrassment. But for the sixth Sunday in a
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                      Any hope of a Rams upset victory Sunday vanished when wide receiver Derek
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                      As a result, the Rams (2-10) "clinched" their sixth season of double-digit
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                      The maligned Rams offensive line allowed no sacks for the first time this
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                      The offense received a big boost from the return of running back Steven
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                      But the improved execution brought the same old result. Bulger threw three
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                      There was a little bit of controversy as well, with Jackson getting only one
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                      "He was gassed, and his leg had started bothering him," Haslett said of
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                      Afterward, Jackson begged to differ.

                      "No, I wasn't gassed," Jackson said. "I had 21 carries, and I felt great. So it
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                      and the Rams were in their 2-minute offense on their final two possessions,
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                      -12-01-2008, 05:08 AM
                    • RamDez
                      Miami at a Glance
                      by RamDez
                      Miami at a Glance
                      Friday, October 22, 2004


                      By Nick Wagoner
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                      After a tumultuous offseason in which its best player suddenly retired, Miami has clearly been reeling from the effects.

                      The Dolphins are off to a 0-6 start, worst in the league and appear poised to live the dream of the undefeated 1972 team in reverse, only this would be much more of a nightmare than a dream.

                      Miami has struggled to create any kind of offensive cohesiveness in spite of solid defensive performances. It seems there is a new player starting at running back every week and the quarterback tandem in place has struggled to make any big plays.

                      The offseason gave many fans in Miami hope that there could be improvements, but then running back Ricky Williams retired to go on tour with Lenny Kravitz and offseason acquisition David Boston went out for the season with an injury. The defense continues to be a mainstay, but without much offensive production, the Dolphins will continue to struggle and coach Dave Wannstedt’s seat will only get hotter.

                      COACHING: Wannstedt is in his fifth season as Miami’s coach, making him the second-longest tenured coach in Dolphins’ history behind the legendary Don Shula. He is 3-3 in his career against the Rams and 0-1 against St. Louis with the Dolphins.

                      Wannstedt’s teams have always played hard, but without the talent in place, it has been hard for Miami to generate any kind of momentum. Wannstedt could be in his final season with the Dolphins, barring a dramatic turnaround that would probably involve Miami somehow winning out. Wannstedt isn’t really to blame for the awful start this season, after all, it wasn’t his fault that Williams bailed on his teammates, Boston got hurt and the team made some poor decisions in the trade and free agency market.

                      OFFENSE: This is clearly Miami’s biggest problem area. It isn’t just struggling to run the ball in Williams’ place or throw it without Boston, but the offense in general. The Dolphins are putting up just 243 yards per game and has scored just four touchdowns.

                      Jay Fiedler starts at quarterback, but has fought off A.J. Feeley most of the season. Fiedler has an anemic passer rating of 51.1 with two touchdowns and six interceptions. Feeley wasn’t much better with a 57.2 rating, two touchdowns and five interceptions. That combination simply isn’t getting the job done and it will be difficult to improve with a depleted receiving corps and inexperienced offensive line.

                      The running game has been the only area of the offense worse than the pass. The Dolphins have put up only 69.5 yards per game on the ground using a rotating door at running back. So far this season, former Ram Lamar Gordon, Travis Minor, Brock Forsey, Leonard Henry and Sammy Morris have gotten the bulk of the carries at various times. Henry leads the team in rushing with 136 yards,...
                      -10-23-2004, 01:51 AM
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