Written by Matthew Cannata | Twitter: @PhinManiacs
The Miami Dolphins will face off against one of the greatest quarterbacks in NFL history on Sunday but don't mistake that for them being star struck or any less confident. In fact, they are all looking forward to the challenge and have been preparing for him all week.
“He’s an excellent football player," Joe Philbin said. "I think in ‘04 we played the Indianapolis Colts, he played very well. We played them in ‘08, he played very well. Watching the film this year, he’s playing at an extremely high level. He’s an excellent football player. We are going to have to do a great job on defense, team defense. We are going to have to tackle well. We are going to have to put pressure (on him). We will have to cover. We will have to be sound in our run-fits. We are playing 11 guys, and they have a very good offense. He is playing at a high level.”
Each week, the practice squad serves as the scout team for the offense and defense and try to simulate the opponent as best as possible. This week, McLeod Bethel-Thompson is playing the role of Peyton Manning and Philbin said that everyone is here for a reason and that Bethel-Thompson has been doing a great job of getting the job done.
Before the Dolphins take the field on Sunday, what will Philbin say to his team?
“We have to play our game. We’ve got a certain identity. We’ve been at this since April 21st, we’ve been practicing, things haven’t changed. The way we pursue, the way we block, the way we catch, the way we run routes, the way we tackle, the way we attempt to create turnovers, we have to play our game. We’re not going to reinvent, we’re not going to change this week to become a whole different football team. I think some of the things we’ve done have been good and we’re going to go out there and that’s what we have to do, we have to be ourselves.”