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Fasano Discusses Challenging Arizona Defense
By on September 27, 2012 at 2:16 pm

It’s early, of course, but Dolphins tight end Anthony Fasano is flourishing in Mike Sherman’s offense, putting up numbers that have him on pace for a career-best season.

Fasano recently joined The Finsiders to talk about the offense’s identity and Sunday’s game at Arizona.

The Cardinals defense is holding opponents to a league-best 13.3 points per game, shutting down Tom Brady and Michael Vick in consecutive weeks. Arizona has Pro Bowl-caliber players on each level of the defense — it’s the type of unit that can force an opposing offense to change its game plan. The key to the strength-on-strength matchup, Fasano said, will be to not back away from the running game, even if guys like Calais Campbell and Darnell Docket are strong out of the gate.

“We have to dictate,” Fasano said. “We’re going to have to run the ball like we have been and continue to improve. They’ve got a great corner, a great safety, three great guys up front, so wherever you want to look, there’s not really many holes. But we’re going to have to really play well and stick to our game plan, and it starts with the run.”

In the short term, with the offensive line controlling the line of scrimmage, it’s going to continue being a run-first offense. The effects are two-fold. Feeding Reggie Bush the ball may be best way to keep things moving, but it also can make Ryan Tannehill’s transition smoother. Without such a heavy burden, it can open up things for the rookie quarterback, whether on a play-action pass or in short yardage situations.

“It’s immeasurable, I think, how it helps him,” Fasano said.  “Knowing that we can run for first downs and not all the load of getting first downs and moving the ball is on shoulders. Running the ball is probably something he wants to do a lot because it makes his passing game a little bit easier.”

Field position, a definite advantage against the Raiders, hurt the Dolphins last week, especially in the second half. Without Bush, the offense stalled out a few times in its own territory, forcing the defense to play catch up on a short field. The front seven’s consistency in the run game continued, however, keeping the game within reach.

Even though the offense failed to flip the field, Fasano was confident the defense was going to stand tough.

“Our defense always seems to hold them,” Fasano said. “As an offensive player, it’s encouraging knowing that you’re going to have your ups and downs and if you have a mistake and turn the ball over on your side of the field, it doesn’t automatically mean points for them.”


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The opinions, analysis and/or speculation expressed by The Finsiders Blog represent those of individual writers, and unless quoted or clearly labeled as such, do not represent the opinions, policies or desires of the Miami Dolphins organization, front office, coaches and executives. Writers' views are formulated independently from any inside information and/or conversation with Dolphins officials, including the coaches and scouts, unless otherwise noted.
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armyfin78 says:

I just found out that Kellen Winslow has a severe Knee injury and asked to be released from the Pat’s. So I guess we have to pray our TE’s pick up there game? I look to the draft next year and maybe a new GM?

Tursiopstruncatus_Sandwich says:

BEHOLD THE FUTURE: Arizona Cardinals W=4, L=0

armyfin78 says:

How about signing Kellen Winslow just released by the Pat’s to help Fasano get open more and add some depth? Release your worst tight end on Waivers? We have no solid play at the position?
Also pull Jeff Fuller off the practice squad? I hope Ireland reads this as we need some offensive help for our young QB Tannahill. He can be great but need’s more help.