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  • Writer's pictureFernie Ruano

Preseason Openor - Miami Dolphins vs Atlanta Falcons

After a number of training camp sessions, it's time for our first preseason glimpse at the Miami Dolphins, who host the Atlanta Falcons on Friday night at Hard Rock Stadium. While the final score doesn't matter, it's a good chance to start measuring the Dolphins against real competition. Here are 3 things to look for:

Protection for Tua Tagovailoa

For all of Tua's work in the weight room and at Jiu-Jitsu class this offseason, none of it will matter if the OL doesn't protecting him better. A lot better!

Tagovailoa, who threw for 3,548 yards with 25 touchdowns last season in 13 games despite missing playing time with concussions, has been sacked 20 or more times in his three NFL seasons.

Enter Austin Jackson and Liam Eichenberg, two highly drafted players with plenty to play for given their struggles to lock up anything during training camp. The Dolphins, short on offensive line depth in large part because of GM Chris Grier, need Jackson and Eichenberg to emerge as key clogs.

And with Terron Armstead and Connor Williams unlikely to play, Friday night would be ideal for Jackson and Eichenberg to have good showings.

Tua will not survive the season and it will be impossible to develop a good running game - if things don't get better upfront.

Miami Dolphins Reinforcements on defense

Jalen Ramsey is out for a while after having knee surgery, while Nick Needham and Trill Williams are still injured. So, the Dolphins, who have loaded up their roster with defensive backs in recent weeks, have plenty of room for competition in the secondary.

Let's remember this was a secondary that routinely got beat deep last season, especially down the stretch against some of the elite quarterbacks in the league. And that's not very encouraging for a team considered to be Super Bowl worthy. What player or players will step up and seize the opportunity?

Miami Dolphins Plan B at QB & No. 3 WR

While Tagovailoa has been talking up a good game this offseason, the Dolphins quietly signed QB Mike White several months ago. Look for White and second -year man Skylar Thompson to get plenty of playing time vs. the Falcons.

White has a slight edge in experience, while Thompson possess a much better arm. Let the race for the .. begin.

No matter who will be throwing the football (let's pray it's Tua for the entire season), the Dolphins definitely have an open competion for the third receiver spot, with Robbie Chosen, Braxton Berrios and Cedric Wilson in the mix.

It would be encouraging to see one of those three receivers emerge early during the preseason. And Friday night vs. the Falcons would be a great time.

Miami ManCave Show
Game Details - Miami Dolphins vs Atlanta Falcons

What: Falcons @ Dolphins

Where: Hard Rock Stadium (347 Don Shula Drive, Miami, FL 33056)

When: Friday, August 11, 2023, 7 p.m, TV: CBS Miami/WTVX 12 (WPB)

Streaming options are also available at fuboTV, Hulu, DAZN, and other platforms.)

RADIO: WINZ 940 AM, WBGG 105.9 FM, *WTZU 94.9 FM, WUUB 106.3 FM (WPB), *WEFL 760 AM (Spanish)

Fernie Ruano, a South Florida-based multimedia specialist and copywriter with a concentration in sports betting analysis and Miami culture, has just about covered it all over the years. Follow him on Twitter at @bet_on305fernie.

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