Written by Luis Sung | Twitter: @FLSportDebater
There is always a certain amount of extra respect that a team has to give their opponents when they're going up against an elite quarterback like Peyton Manning, and the Dolphins are no exception to that rule.
Going into Peyton's house in Denver and facing him after a rather humiliating loss to the Rams gives the impression that Peyton is going to bring more than his A-game on Sunday.
“When you face these kind of teams that can score a lot of points, I think history would tell you that you’ve got to put great emphasis on each possession." said offensive coordinator Bill Lazor. "To me, the number one thing we have to do is score points because, when you fall behind, it’s no different than playing a triple-option team I think in college."
The team has no illusions that Peyton may not be ready to face their powerful defense after the upset the Rams handed them last week, and every player on the team is aware of the challenge they're about to go and face. So far, their gameplan is just to do what they've been doing already.
“I think we just have to play our football game. Play the way we play." said wide receiver Mike Wallace. "That’s obvious to us that we’re playing one of the best quarterbacks, if not the best quarterback to ever play the game – that you have to put up more points. That’s obvious. That’s stuff that we don’t even need to talk about. We know that."
That's been the message the coaches have been sending all throughout the week, there've been no attempts to suggest that the team will need any sort of gimmick to get past Denver, but they have been preaching that execution will be more important than ever.
“Just like any other week. It’s a game, we’ve got to win, we’re going into a tough place against a tough team. We’ve got to play a great game to beat them, that’s what the message is, nothing more, nothing less." said cornerback Brent Grimes. "It’s a great team that we’re about to play and you’ve got to go in there and play a great game if you want to beat them on their home field.”
It's certainly a daunting task when you think about the prospect of the Dolphins offense getting into a shootout with an elite offense that's led by a future Hall of Famer like Peyton Manning, but the team is saying they're ready to face it head on.
“We are up for the challenge. I think we have a great group of guys in this locker room." said running back Lamar Miller. "We know what we have to do to keep this season alive and we just have to take it one game at a time.”
That's the stance the team is taking against the Denver Broncos, and it shows that the Dolphins are confident in their ability to perform, while at the same time being well aware of the strength of their upcoming opponents. A good balance of confidence and respect for their opponents is exactly what the team needs to have, and they have it.