What: Miami Dolphins (0-1) vs. Arizona Cardinals (1-0)
When/Where: Sunday September 14, 2008 1:15pm/University of Phoenix Stadium
TV/Radio: CBS (5)/KTAR FM 92.3, Sirius NFL Radio Channel 113 ( Miami b’cast) and Channel 125 (Arizona b’cast)
What about this matchup: This is the first meeting between these two teams since 2004 when the Cardinals went to Miami and defeated the Dolphins 24-23. Miami’s last visit to Arizona to play the Cardinals was in 1996 when the Dan Marino-led Dolphins crushed the Cardinals 38-10. Obviously this team is much different than the 1996 version, however not much different than the 2004 Dolphins. Chad Pennington is now a Miami Dolphin and in his first start last week he threw for 251 yards, 2 TD’s and 1 INT.
Miami Offense vs. Arizona Defense: Of Pennington’s 43 passes last week, only 6 were caught by a wide receiver. Tight End Anthony Fasano led the team with 8 catches against the New York Jets last Sunday. Pennington looks to improve on that stat. I can tell you that fans in Miami aren’t too happy about that and are a little concerned that was all the production the wide outs could muster. I look for Arizona to continue to go after the ball hard. LB Travis LaBoy had 2 sacks last week and is looking for more. Darnell Dockett kept his cool last week, so let’s see if he can make it two weeks in a row. The true test will be the secondary. Will Pennington light it up or can the defense hold another passing game in check? We all know RB Ricky Williams will get his yards, but in this bend but don’t break defense, that is to be expected.
Arizona Offense vs. Miami Defense: Kurt Warner looks to continue the ball control offense of the Arizona Cardinals. After holding the ball for 23 of the 30 second half minutes last week versus the San Francisco 49ers, including an 18 play drive, the Cardinals solidified themselves as a patient, balanced offense that didn’t turn the ball over. They will continue to work on keeping the balance between passing and running the ball this week. Miami held the Jets to under 300 yards last week and they will look to do the same to the Cardinals, although that appears to be a tougher task this week. The Dolphins linebacker core is lead by the hot-headed Joey Porter, whose accomplishments last week included a pregame argument on the field.
Prediction: Arizona 31 Miami 21
Next week: Arizona @ Washington, Miami @ New England