TAMPA BAY @ DOLPHINS:FINAL: Dolphins win exhibition opener 10-7. Chad Henne, Brandon Marshall and first-team offense looked shaky, for what that's worth (not much). Mike Nolan's defense came up pretty big. Your thoughts welcome.
4Q: Rashad Jones recovers TB fumble -- the fourth takeaway by Miami's defense. ..... Dolphins protect their lead with 6:28 to play when Nate Ness deflects an end-zone pass by Tampa Bay on fourth-and-goal from the Miami 3.
3Q: DOLPHINS 10, BUCS 7. Lex Hilliard 2-yard scoring run gives Miami its first lead as quarter wanes. Set up by Tyler Thigpen to Marlon Moore for 34-yard completion to TB 11. ..... Bucs miss a 49-yard FG try keep score at 7-3, Tampa, with four minutes left in third. ..... I'm going to say this has been a dreadful game so far even by exhitbition-opener standards.
2Q: BUCS 7, DOLPHINS 3. Dan Carpenter 33-yard FG in closing seconds of first half averts shutout. ..... Dolphins at Tampa Bay 4 but lose fumble as offensive frustration continues. ..... Paul Solaia fumble recovery for Miami is third takeaway by Dolphins defense. Now time for offense to do something. ..... Four series, four punts for Miami offense. ..... Sean Smith interception in opening seconds of second Q finally gives Dolfans something to cheer.
1Q -- Three series, three punts. Not that I'm counting. Brandon Marshall drops a perfect pass. Two minutes left in first quarter and Dolfans with pretty much zero to cheer so far. ..... BUCS 7, DOLPHINS 0. Sammie Stroughter 13-yard TD pass from Josh Freeman with 3:07 to play in first quarter. Big play was Vontae Davis getting scorched for 30-yard completion. Oy. ..... Brandon Fields takes early lead in 2010 Dolphins team MVP voting with 63-yard punt. ..... Rain, a muddy baseball infield and a punt on the first possession. Not ideal conditions to launch a season, but what the hell. ..... Rain falling. Thank gosh I'm up in the press box staying dry and luxuriating in tubs of popcorn. ..... Live blog underway! Kickoff getting close. Dolphins lead, 0-0. Crowd looking like a Marlins crowd right now but filling in.
Original post: I'll be at the Dolphins' home stadium tonight for 2010 preseason game No. 1 vs. the Buccaneers of Tampa Bay. Exhibition openers are famously unreliable barometers in terms of placing any stock in the final score since starters such as Chad Henne are likely to play only the first quarter, but this game will serve as a major stage for marginal guys trying to impress and make the roster. Tonight we'll also be interested in getting our first competitive glimpses of new Dolphins such as Brandon Marshall (pictured), Karlos Dansby and Jared Odrick.
We'll turn this into an Unofficial Live Boutique Blog starting sometime around 6:30, so join us if you can and share your thoughts before, during and of course after the game. Let us know who or what you are most interested in seeing and later who impressed you or didn't and what stood out to you overall. We'll also be Twittering and Tweeting throughout the game so follow at Twitter.com/gregcote if you aren't already on board.
Because it's football time, baby!