Defensively, the Dolphins played the Patriots fairly tough on Sunday, allowing only 10 yards rushing in the first half. Unfortunately, the Fish gave up over 100 yards rushing in the second half.
Mike Nolan, their defensive coordinator last year, left them with some pretty good talent and schemes, so they are not a dismal unit.
The Dolphins have two 49er games against the Rams to study because Jeff Fisher’s defensive unit played them tough. I don’t believe Miami’s defensive minds can equal Fisher and his experience, but it should be easy for them to adopt a combination of loose zone pass defense schemes and to split the field with combo coverages to force the Niners’ struggling pass protection to hold up longer against one of the best pass rushers in the NFL – Cameron Wake.
Colin Kaepernick could decide to check down a little quicker to get the ball out of his hands and allow the running backs or the underneath receivers to run after the catch.
The Dolphins can also make it tougher on the Niners’ run game if the Dolphins move their front four.
By moving the front four, the Dolphins can angle or slant their defensive line based upon the formation and the backfield sets the Niners employ.
Therefore, it behooves Greg Roman to present some changeups each week (tendency breakers), so if the Fish are slanting to the strength of the set, the Niners are running the other way.
You have to “self-scout” yourself as well as scout the opponent. By self-scouting, you can see what the opponent sees when he is scouting you and coming up with your tendencies.