The Saints march into Miami undefeated as the Dolphins look to break even at home.
New Orleans (5-0) at Miami Dolphins (2-3)
Miami will host another potent passing attack this week, as Drew Brees looks to utilize every weapon he has against one of the better defenses the Saints will face this season. Both teams have been excellent against the run this year, as New Orleans should go to the air often once again, focusing a little more on Reggie Bush in the passing game this week to open up this offense. Miami on the other hand, will look to prove that the Saints aren't as good as their numbers show against the run, as the Ronnie and Ricky show will do their best to bring New Orleans their first loss of the season.
With both squads on current winning streaks, momentum will meet preparation, with the nod going to Miami who has had two weeks to prepare for New Orleans. That still might not be enough, as no team has been able to figure out how to stop the Saints so far, with Drew Brees creating headaches for every defensive coordinator he has faced. The Dolphins bring a complex 3-4 defensive strategy, with experienced veteran talent looking to slow down this much improved Saints running game.
The Phins will need another solid game from Chad Henne to continue their recent success, and Miami will be undoubtedly forced to throw the ball to keep up with this high powered Saints offense. If Henne can't get it done, all of the pressure will be placed on this Wildcat offense to pace the game to keep Brees off of the field as much as possible. The Saints have been able to score often and early, forcing their opponents to keep up by throwing the ball, maybe making their run stopping abilities look better than they actually are. Though if Henne can't move the chains in the air, the Dolphins could be in big trouble.
Miami will have a simple strategy. Run the ball, and run the ball some more, eating up as much of the clock as they can. If Henne can sneak in a pass or two to keep the Saints off balance, they will hopefully keep the ball in their control, an essential factor if you plan on beating New Orleans. But if Henne turns over the ball with fumbles and interceptions, the Saints should have no problem scoring a ton of points again this week, giving them an unbeatable advantage. Miami must apply pressure to Brees and continue to shut down the run, looking to force Drew to make mistakes and capitalize off of them.
Miami will seek to turn this into a defensive ball game, but that will be easier said than done against this elite offense unit. The Dolphins will have the crowd on their side and it is always tough for any team to remain undefeated, but the Saints might be too much to handle for Miami. The Saints had no problem shutting down the Giants last week, a team considered to be better than the Phins, so look for them to continue their confident offensive approach. But if Miami comes out hot, returns with consistent play from Henne, and can dominate the Saints on the ground, they will have a shot to win this game.
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Written by Josh Souder