The vast majority of fans are giving up on the season before they square off against the New England Patriots on Sunday but the players and coaches haven’t written off the season. Ryan Tannehill said that while their destiny isn’t in their hands, the only thing they can do is go out and win.
“We didn’t play well in a big game for us, but the season is not over. Obviously, it’s not fully in our hands now, but we can still control what we can control. That starts with this game on Sunday,” he said. “It was definitely a tough loss for us, but there is still football out in front of us. I think guys are excited for this week. It’s a big game, a division game, playing a good team on the road. I think we are excited about the opportunity to go up there and play well. Obviously, we didn’t execute well offense or defense really this last game. We are excited to have a shot to go out and play well against a good team.”
Joe Philbin admitted that it’s a very important game and that going against the Patriots, they are going to have to play extremely well if they want to win.
“There’s no doubt about it. That’s what we told the team. They’ve seen the tape already. We practiced yesterday. We are going to practice here again in about an hour. On paper, they are a good team and, on film, they are a good team. We are going to have to play extremely well.”
Philbin said that he hasn’t had the time to sit down and evaluate the team, noting that they are 7-6 and still in the playoff race.
“I think there is a time and a place to evaluate what’s the progress, where is this team at and where is this organization is at. On December 10th, when you have a game against the Patriots on the 14th staring at you in the face, there are probably other times to talk about that,” he said. “I said about myself, our staff, how we are able to get these guys ready to play, it’s December 14 when it’s kickoff time in New England. We are playing an outstanding opponent. We need to play our best football game of the year. You get paid as a coach to get their team to play up to their potential. That’s what we have to do.”
Mike Pouncey said that for him, he’s viewing it as one game only because if they don’t win, they aren’t going to the playoffs.
“We came out with a great attitude this week. We tried to have our best week of practice. We are excited about this game. We played them really well the first time. I can’t wait to go out there and see how we play them on Sunday.”
We’ll see if the Dolphins’ play on the field reflects their attitude about not giving up. If they can go toe-to-toe with the Patriots, they just might be able to pull off the win.
This story was written by Matthew Cannata. Follow him on Twitter: @PhinManiacs