(CBSMiami/CBS Local) — The Miami Dolphins and Washington Redskins squared off in Super Bowl VII and Super Bowl XVII. The Dolphins won the first matchup to complete the NFL’s only undefeated season to date. The Redskins won the second, on a fourth-quarter, fourth-down John Riggins run that remains among the NFL’s most iconic plays.
The Dolphins play the Redskins again this Sunday, in a matchup of historically bad teams who won’t be playing in January, let alone February. They’re barely playing now.READ MORE: Miami Weather: Arctic Air Moving In For Weekend Freeze
“It’s really a matchup between two teams who might want it less right now,” as CBS4 sports anchor Mike Cugno frames it. “Thinking about draft picks, maybe Tua Tagovailoa out of Alabama.”
The Dolphins, coming off their bye week, remain win-less going into Week 6 of head coach Brian Flores’ first season. And it’s been a rough start. Miami has given up 163 points so far, just shy of 41 points per game. They’ve scored just 26 points, for an average of 6.5 points per game. The average margin of defeat in those games is just over 34 points. The defense has allowed 472 yards per game, worst in the NFL, by a lot, while picking up 225 yards per game, which is second worst.
The Redskins, also seeking their first win, are better, as team stats go, though they rank near the bottom in all of the aforementioned categories. But the directionless team has bigger problems than numbers. Head coach Jay Gruden was just fired after their ugly Week 5 loss to the New England Patriots. The team’s eighth coach of the last two decades has been replaced, on an interim basis, by offensive line coach Bill Callahan.
“When you look at the Redskins and what they’ve been going through,” says Cugno, “with the turnover at the head-coaching position, with Jay Gruden getting fired, Miami’s got continuity on their side, for sure.”READ MORE: Cold Weather Coming, Protect The Four P's: People, Pets, Plants, Property
Both teams have play-makers, which still could make this an entertaining matchup. As Cugno asks, “is Josh Rosen going to take his next step as a starting quarterback? He knows this is a tryout, whether it’s here with the Dolphins or somewhere else in the NFL. So obviously he’s going out there with a purpose.” The Redskins quarterback carousel includes Colt McCoy, Case Keenum and rookie Dwayne Haskins, with many wondering when the rookie first-round pick will get a real shot.
Both starting quarterbacks will face defenses that have been pushed around. “Taco Charlton, who was let go by the Cowboys a couple weeks ago, ended up on the Dolphins roster, is already Miami’s sack leader,” notes Cugno. “He’s got two on the season. So that’s really been one of their biggest issues.” The Dolphins have only managed five sacks in four games, another league worst. The Redskins front seven, which features multiple first-round picks, has only come up with nine sacks in five games.
Cugno sees the Dolphins defensive line as perhaps the key to the game. “If they can actually get some push up front [and] stop guys like Chris Thompson, Adrian Peterson and control the game there, I think Miami can actually squeak out a win this week.”MORE NEWS: Severe Winter Weather In Northeast Expected To Disrupt Flights At South Florida Airports
The Dolphins play the Redskins @ Hard Rock Stadium on Sunday @ 1 ET on CBS.