2014 NFL Power Rankings Countdown: #24 Miami Dolphins

Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Each day, Mile High Report will reveal the next pre-season ranked team. The Dolphins organization has some serious issues with maturity from its locker room to go along with its deficiency in talent. Both likely play into their low ranking here.
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For the Miami Dolphins, the 2013 was a season of major upheaval and controversy, yet they somehow scrapped together an 8-8 record, albeit in one of the worst divisions in the NFL. Perhaps its due to that controversy or our own collective skepticism of the talent level of the Dolphins, but as a group, they fell all the way to 24th.

24. Miami Dolphins (2013 Record: 8-8)

Looking back, nearly all of the Dolphins wins were against quality opponents. Taking down the Indianapolis Colts and Atlanta Falcons early, then taking down the Cincinnati Bengals, San Diego Chargers, Pittsburgh Steelers and New England Patriots late. The also played the Carolina Panthers and Baltimore Ravens tough, so if I were a Dolphins fan then I would have much to be excited about. I am not, though, and I see serious holes on this roster.

Key Losses: Jonathan Martin, Richie Incognito, Chris Clemons, Dimitri Patterson, John Jerry, Paul Soliai, Nolan Carroll

Key Acquisitions: Earl Mitchell, Branden Albert, Shelley Smith, Cortland Finnegan, Jason Fox, Knowshon Moreno, Damian Williams, Louis Delmas

With all of the drama between the bully knuckleheaded Richie Incognito towards Jonathan Martin, the Dolphins attacked the offensive line aggressively in both free agency and the NFL Draft. The key to any successful offense, especially one with a young quarterback, is the offensive line, so we will soon find out if the Dolphins did enough to solve their problems on offense. They cannot expect Ryan Tannehill to carry this team to the playoffs.

In fact, the Dolphins schedule presents its own problems for this team as they are facing several teams that had mediocre years in 2013, but, in my opinion, have superior talent to the Dolphins. Besides the New England Patriots, the Dolphins also face the Green Bay Packers, Chicago Bears, San Diego Chargers, Denver Broncos, Detroit Lions and Baltimore Ravens. All teams I think the Dolphins would be underdogs against.

Projected Record: 6-10

MHR Rankings

AVG StDev Kyle Tim Ian Topher Pete Scotty Jacob Jon Mike Laurie
23.6 3.66 23 26 23 23 25 21 26 16 30 23

MHR Commentary

Kyle: The offensive line should be better, and maybe Ryan Tannehill will be too.

Jon: Miami will be the second-best team in the AFC this fall. Expect them to compete for a Wild Card berth.

Jacob: Is this the year the Dolphins make the jump? Will it ever be the year they make that jump? They showed some promise in 2013, and upgraded a number of positions in 2014, yet I still find myself doubting this team. The main problem in Miami in 2013, in more ways than one, was the dysfunctional offensive line. Adding two offensive tackles in the first three rounds of the draft should help there, but it’s tough to see the Dolphins moving up from mediocrity. 7-9 wins.

Is this the year the Dolphins make the jump? Will it ever be the year they make that jump? - Jacob Dearlove, MHR

Topher: The Dolphins have one of the worst coaching staffs in the NFL which always makes me downgrade a team but they did upgrade at just about every position on offense and they still have guys like Wake and Starks on their defense. I think they continue to battle it out with the Jets for the #2 spot in their division but poor coaching will hold them back.

Pete: I don’t know how to rank the Dolphins. I want to rank them higher, but then I remember that no matter how talented and competitive they appear to be, they’ll ultimately do just enough to lose. Could they be a fringe playoff team? Sure, but they could also finish 3rd in their division and miss the playoffs by 4 wins.

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