The Dolphins run defense held up against Arian Foster, holding him to 79 yards on 26 carries, a 3 yard per carry clip.
Reggie Bush ran the ball well, gaining 69 yards on 14 carries. He also had 6 catches for 46 yards. The lone bright spot on offense.
Marcus Thigpen had a nice punt return for a touchdown, the first Dolphins punt return for a touchdown since 2007. Special teams also did an excellent job of keeping the Texans return game corralled.
Randy Starks had a monster game with 2 sacks and 6 tackles.
Honorable mentions to Koa Misi with 11 tackles and Karlos Dansby with 9 tackles.
Ryan Tannehill's debut was a rough one. 3 interceptions and some other inaccurate throws. Two interceptions came on tipped passes that were a combination of issues: 1) offensive linemen not engaging defensive line, allowing them to jump the passing lanes 2) Ryan Tannehill locking onto receivers, hinting at where he was going with the ball and 3) the offensive coaching staff continuing to call the same quick passes that defensive linemen know they can tip by sitting back and reading the QB. With Tannehill's mobility, the coaching staff should have gotten him outside the pocket a little more and using plays with a moving pocket to keep the defensive linemen off balance. Reggie Bush was running the ball well, so there were opportunities to use playaction.
Leaving Andre Johnson one on one with anybody is a recipe for disaster. Even worse is when you leave him one on one with Nolan Carroll or Jimmy Wilson. Not smart by the defensive coaching staff.
Legedu Nannee is terrible. Poor route runner, doesn't seem to give a lot of effort and was held without a catch today. He doesn't belong on the field.
The Texans were held scoreless for most of the first half, but due to four first half turnovers, they were able to put up 24 points in the 2nd half. Inconsistencies are to be expected from a young team, especially with a rookie quarterback, but good teams like the Texans will make you pay when you make mistakes.
Turnovers were the deciding factor in this game. This is an issue that needs to be corrected.
This game was a lot closer as far as physicality than the score showed. Take away the takeaways and this is a tight, defensive battle. At least against the Texans, both the defensive and offensive fronts showed they could keep up. The Dolphins need better play at the defensive and offensive skill positions to hang with teams like the Texans.
Next week, the Dolphins face the Raiders. If they can clean up the turnovers and put the same effort they did against the Texans, they have a chance to win.
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