Saturday, October 19, 2013

Wallace: Execution, not change, key to run game


Miami Dolphins wide receiver Mike Wallace isn't thrilled with the Dolphins' offensive performance of late, and it has nothing to do with him not getting the ball.

Since his one-catch start to the season, Wallace has seen his targets vastly increase in the subsequent weeks. The 27-year-old currently leads the team in targets (44) and is only three receptions behind team leader Brian Hartline. He's put together two 100-yard games, one of which was sweetened by an 18-yard touchdown pass.

So what's the deal?

It's the Fins' running game, or lack thereof.

"You can’t have a one-dimensional offense, it’s just not going to work," Wallace told The Finsiders Friday. "You can’t just throw the ball every single play. Guys are just going to pin their ears back and rush it and that’s a bad situation, so you have to keep them off balance.

"We have to be able to run the football. That’s the only way to win football games."

After running the ball 23 and 27 times respectively in the first two games, the team's woes in the ground game seems to have them giving up almost entirely. Miami's averaged a mere 15 carries the past three games, which includes only 11 against a Ravens team that had given up more than 200 yards on the ground the week before. 

The Dolphins — one of only four teams to average fewer than 20 attempts per game — and are 29th in yards per game (69.6). And while the team's rushing attack has had some success deep in the red zone, it's had little on third down, tallying only 16 first downs all season (second lowest). 

Wallace said Friday that things won't be all that different in terms of the the team's running philosophy following the bye week. They're just hoping the results will be far better.

"I think we just have to do a better job of running it," he said. "Us blocking on the outside and the running backs making reads and cuts, so I don’t think you want to get too far into trying to switch things up.

"You just have to stick to what you do, be confident in it and just make it work; execute.”

Buffalo is currently allowing teams to gain more than 120 yards per game on average (fifth worst) and has allowed eight rushes of 20 yards or more so far, the second most of any team.

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