The Miami Dolphins will need to key in numerous players this week as they prepare for the Baltimore Ravens and two who come to mind right away are Justin Forsett and Steve Smith.
We all know about Forsett and how much of an impact he’s made but Smith has been slowly fading away after a hot start to the season. Nonetheless, he’s the kind of player a team can easily forget about and then pay the price in a big way on game day.
Joe Philbin talked about what Forsett brings to the table and what he’s noticed in film study this week.
“I think they have a good run game overall. He’s certainly been extremely productive. He’s broken tackles. He’s made big plays in the running game. I think their line and tight end do an excellent job. The receivers block down field. They’ve got a good play action game. So it’s a good comprehensive unit thing. He’s certainly done a really nice job this year.”
Jared Odrick noted that with a short running back like Forsett, it’s easy for him to hide behind the offensive line. This, of course, allows him to hit holes more quickly without the defense knowing where he’s going all the time. With that in mind, Odrick sees similarities in the Ravens compared to other teams they’ve played before.
“I see something similar to Houston, which we played before. They’ve got some similarities with their offensive coordinator, some guys that have run similar offenses. You see a really unified front in terms of their front, their O-Line (offensive line). They work well together and they work flat and fast.”
J. Odrick (On if it’s a problem when shorter running backs like Baltimore RB Justin Forsett hide behind linemen) – “Somebody short, they have natural ability do so. Every running back isn’t going to be 6’5 and 300 something pounds, so he can’t hide. Backs naturally hide behind their O-Line (offensive line) and run well, and this guy does it well.”
Brent Grimes talked about the kind of impact that Steve Smith could make in the game. Being in the NFC South for several years, Grimes faced off against Smith numerous times and said that it doesn’t look like he’s lost a step.
“Yeah, he does everything he’s been doing. He gets the ball, he’s competitive, he’s making plays down the field because he’s good at finding the ball and making a play on it. Then once he gets the ball, he’s still tough to tackle, like a punt returner. He used to do that too. He still has that. You’ve seen the season, he’s been making plays. He still can play the game.”
Forsett is the obvious choice to zero in on but if the Dolphins don’t do their work on Smith, he’ll find a way to make them pay and he won’t be bashful about letting them know about it either – both on the field during the game and through the media afterwards. We’ll see what the Dolphins’ plan is come Sunday at 1:00 PM EST.
This story was written by Matthew Cannata. Follow him on Twitter: @PhinManiacs