MIAMI (CBSMiami) – The Miami Dolphins are riding high after pulling out a last-second victory over the Atlanta Falcons Sunday evening, but the Fins still have one major area of concern as the head towards a showdown with undefeated New Orleans next Monday.
In Sunday’s game against Atlanta, the Dolphins’ offensive line once again struggled to open holes for the running game and to protect quarterback Ryan Tannehill.
The final rushing numbers for the Fins are a bit deceiving because Lamar Miller broke one run for 49 yards. However, if you take out Miller’s long run, the Dolphins ran the ball 14 times for 41 yards, or roughly 2.93 yards per carry.
Adding in Miller’s long run makes the final rushing numbers a lot better, 15 carries for 90 yards or six yards per carry. Still, Miller’s production in the game outside the one long run was abysmal, 7 carries for 13 yards, or roughly 1.63 yards per rush.
Still, the big run counts and in the end the Dolphins running game helped to finish off the Falcons. But another area the offensive line controls did nothing to help Tannehill.
The Fins offensive line gave up five sacks against the Falcons which cost the Dolphins 41 yards of field position. Combined with previous games, Tannehill has been sacked 14 times on the season.
Projecting out the full season would leave Tannehill making a lot of appointments in the trainer’s room. The Dolphins offensive line is on pace to give up 75 sacks on the season, which would be enough to knock even the toughest quarterbacks out for a few games.
Tannehill has already appeared on the injury report this year and if this pace continues, he may be on it a lot more this season. The record for most sacks allowed in a season was 104 given up by the 1986 Philadelphia Eagles, a record that will likely never be broken.
Overall, the league is struggling mightily in pass protection. The NFL has seen 97 sacks so far in Week 3 before Monday’s game between the Raiders and Broncos. The record for one weekend is 102 in week 11 of 1986.