1) It is MONDAY, OCTOBER 27. Click on Random Evidence for today's latest Sunday notes-column package. 2) In The Previous Blogpost (ITPB): Canes clobber Virginia Tech, CSM poll, Friday NFL Week 8 pix, ominous Heat trend, 'Marlins Man' & more. 2) Follow us on Twitter @gregcote. Also Facebook, Instagram and Vine.
Find our gameblog and postgame thoughts immediately below the new CSM poll.
DOLFAN SATISFACTION METER: G7: Results are certified in the latest Dolfan Satisfaction Meter postgame poll, and they show 63.2 percent overall satisfaction in the wake of Sunday's 27-13 victory at Jacksonville putting Miami's season record at 4-3. That's a rarity: a dip in the approval rating despite a win. The DSM, in its seventh season, is a continuous weekly gauge of how fans are feeling about the Dolphins and their direction. Right after each game I invite you to share your overall degree of satisfaction. Criteria for voting is your own, but I suggest fans consider the most recent game's performance and caliber of opponent, season as a whole, direction the club is heading and your overall degree of optimism -- all in the context of reasonable expectations. Results are certified official the morning after one full day of voting. In this case that was around 9 a.m. today/Tuesday.
2014 DSM results
G1: 96.4% (following 33-20 victory vs. New England)
G2: 12.2% (following 29-10 loss at Buffalo)
G3: 2.0% (following 34-15 loss vs. Kansas City)
G4: 62.3% (following 38-14 victory vs. Oakland in London)
G5: 14.2% (following 27-24 loss vs. Green Bay)
G6: 80.7% (following 27-14 victory at Chicago)
G7: 63.2% (following 27-13 victory at Jacksonville)
Next poll: Nov. 2 (following game vs. San Diego)
G7: DOLPHINS @ JACKSONVILLE: TIME FOR MIAMI TO ASSERT ITSELF: Final: Bizarre game. Miami outgained in total yards and time with ball but wins with ease thanks to two interception-return TDs and a really, really bad opponent. ...... Fourth quarter: Jax scores first TD to make it 27-13 on 48-yard Bortles bomb to Allen Robinson ... Fins make it 27-6 on 29-yard FG with 3:57 to play. ... Tannehill intercepted in end zone on deflected pass. ..... Third quarter: MIA now up 24-6 on Tannehill's 3-yard TD flip to Rishard Matthews, completing 95-yard drive. ... A third drop by Hartline, by my count. ... Sadsacksonville within 17-6 on a 40-yard FG. ... A penny for your thoughts, Chad Henne. ... MIA 17-3 on Brent Grimes 22-yard pick-return TD, the second for the Fins today. First time since 1998 Miami has had two in a game. ... And the second half starts with a sack/punt for Miami. Ugh. ..... Halftime: One of the stranger games I have covered or seen. Miami trailing in total plays 40-19, in total yards 219-56 and in time of possession 21 minutes to 9 -- but leading 10-3. It isn't so much that Miami is lucky. It's that mistake-prone Jax is reminding us why they are 1-6. ..... Second quarter: Miami 10-3 on Sturgis 43-yard FG. ... Fins get first first-down of game with 3:37 left in half. ... MIA with another takeaway as Delmas recovers Bortles fumble. ... Jax within 7-3 on 30-yard FG. Miami down 36-6 in plays, 199-3 in net yards but winning. Bizarre. ... Boom! MIA 7-0 on Louis Delmas 81-yard interception return TD. It was rookie Blake Bortles' NFL-leading 11th pick of year. ..... First quarter: Miami lucky it's 0-0 after 1Q. Jags killing themselves with miscues. Like bad teams do. ... Miami offense six plays, three net yards after two drives. ... Jax makes 46-yard FG but points are erased by holding penalty. That's why 1-6 teams are 1-6. ... Sack ends Dolphins' first possession, not a good sign. ... Fins' Olivier Vernon blocks Jags 48-yard FG try to end opening drive. Miami run-D gave up 41-yard run by Denard Robinson, then toughened. ..... Original post: Start with this truism: The Dolphins at an up and down 3-3 have not proven themselves good enough to have a "trap" game or to take any opponent lightly, even this one. Even at 1-6 Jacksonville’s defense has allowed only 17, 16 and 6 points the past three games, and, yes the Jags are capable of a home-'dog upset here. Jax has the sack-power to bother the Fins’ improved offensive line. Also, Miami's inconsistency and recent history of letting fans down means that the big win in Chicago last week does nothing to lessen Dolfans' inherent dread that this week may see a pratfall. Having said all of that, I don't see an upset. Miami's strong defense has the potential to dominate a limited Jax offense and make it a tough day for rookie QB Blake Bortles, whose league-leading 10 interceptions is a total likely to grow. Ryan Tannehill should stay hot against a generous J-Ville pass D, and the injury-loss of LB Paul Posluszny will hurt the Jags' run stopping and enable Lamar Miller. The biggest threat to Miami here isn't the opponent, but rather any overconfidence that might have crept into the team's mindset. We'll see Sunday how well Joe Philbin did in shooing that away. This isn't the time or place for a trap-game mentality. This is the time and place for the Dolphins to assert themselves and get on a roll with tougher games looming. My pick: Dolphins, 24-16.
HEAT READY FOR A FIGHT: Heat open the NBA season and the post-LeBron era Wednesday night, and the Herald's preview sectionis out today. Click on Ready For A Fight for my preview column on moving on since James' defection. The Heat has conceded nothing. Miami is ready now to fight for what has come so easily the past four seasons: the attention, and the victories. Pictured: The downsized new Big 3 of Dwyane Wade, Chris Bosh and Luol Deng.
HOT BUTTON: TOP 10 THINGS SOUTH FLORIDA SPORTS FANS ARE TALKING ABOUT: Our blog-exclusive Sunday feature, an expanded, updated Hot Button Top 10. Hot Button means what's on our minds as the sports week just past pivots to the week ahead:
1. Dolphins: Miami seeks to avoid 'trap' in Jacksonville: The funny thing about 1-6 Jaguars being a "trap" game Sunday is the false presumption Miami is good enough to take any opponent lightly. In a state context, the Dolphins are better than Jacksonville or Tampa Bay, but that's faint praise. It's like being the best candidate in this Florida governor’s race.
2. Hurricanes: Duke of Gables reigns in huge win in Blacksburg: Duke Johnson ran for 249 yards, and UM’s defense played great in big 30-6 win at Virginia Tech on Thursday night. Al Golden’s team has now won two in a row and is playing the best it has all year. Canes fans used to complaining about something or firing somebody are feeling seriously deprived.
3. Heat: Post-LeBron era tips off Wednesday at home: Feeling down, Heat fans? Jilted? Here's a reminder how lucky you've had it: This is the 12th consecutive season that Miami's roster will have included some combination of Dwyane Wade, Shaquille O'Neal or LeBron James. A Heat fan's biggest challenge: Feeling sorry for himself without appearing spoiled.
4. Baseball: Royals-Giants World Series even into Game 5: The 110th Fall Classic is tied 2-2 as it wraps up its three-game midsection in San Francisco with Game 5 Sunday night. A Miami lawyer known as "Marlins Man," Laurence Leavy, 58, has been ubiquitous on TV behind home plate in bright orange team jersey. It's closest Marlins have come to being in the World Series since 2003.
5. Soccer: Ronaldo tops Messi in 'El Clasico': In the most anticipated match since the summer World Cup, the globe’s two greatest players faced off Saturday as Cristiano Ronaldo's goal led Real Madrid past scoreless Lionel Messi and Barcelona, 3-1, in a Spanish league match. Soccer agnostics, if this one didn’t pique your interest, there probably is no hope for you.
6. College football: First playoff rankings out Tuesday: The first College Football Playoff ranking is out Tuesday, after which about a dozen one-loss teams will be complaining they're not in the top four. Remember when we thought a playoff would end all the arguing and controversy. How cute!
7. Panthers: Cats return from successful road trip: Florida is back on home ice Thursday after taking six of possible eight points on recent four-game roadie. For first time since Miami Arena days games are being broadcast in Spanish, too. That means you can now not listen in two languages.
8. Gators: Florida makes quarterback change: Young Treon Harris is replacing embattled Jeff Driskel as Gators' starting quarterback. UF fans I know are more interested in who'll be replacing coach Will Muschamp, and when.
9. NBA: League rejects new 'tanking' measures: NBA failed to pass new draft-lottery rules that would have lessened the incentive for teams to "tank" for better draft position. You know it's getting pretty bad when losing teams' late-season starters include assistant coaches and players' moms.
10. NASCAR: Chase field down to eight NASCAR’s Chase for the Cup culminating next month at Homestead is down to eight finalists. Kevin Harvick called the new format "the dumbest thing I’ve ever seen in my life." Imagine what drivers who didn’t make the cut think of it!
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