If there’s any team the new Miami Dolphins offense can get on track against, it’s the New England Patriots, right?

Dolphins Coach Brian Flores called plays for the Patriots defense that won the Super Bowl last season. He may know the inner workings of Patriots Coach Bill Belichick’s operation better than any coach on Miami’s new staff.

Dolphins offensive coordinator Chad O’Shea also had a first-hand account of New England’s defense while working as a wide receivers coach there.

If there’s any week the Dolphins offense should be able to find its footing, it’s in Sunday’s matchup at Hard Rock Stadium.


Flores was quick to point out what his Dolphins team has to do offensively after its disappointing season opener against the Baltimore Ravens last week.

“That’s a good defense with a lot of good players on it,” Flores said on Wednesday. “It’s a veteran defense. They can make adjustments. They’re big. They’re fast. They’re physical. We’re going to have to play well across the board, from a communications standpoint, from a technique/fundamentals standpoint, and from a making-plays standpoint to have success against this defense. They’ve got a good scheme. They’re very multiple.

“Yes, we know them,” Flores added. “But we have to do a great job of executing.”

The Dolphins scored only 10 points in their season opener, unable to keep pace with the 59 points quarterback Lamar Jackson and the Baltimore Ravens piled up.

Quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick was able to lead a touchdown drive, connecting with rookie receiver Preston Williams shortly before halftime. But overall, the Dolphins offense failed to find its rhythm or continuity in the opener.

ON THE first snap of Miami’s season, Baltimore’s Mark Ingram took a handoff and the Dolphins were helpless to do anything about it until 49 yards later.

Bobby McCain lunged to wrap up Ingram by the legs but missed. A falling Eric Rowe also fanned on the would-be tackle.

Pro Football Focus counted 11 missed tackles by the Dolphins in the 59-10 rout, which, considering what happened on the first play alone, might seem a conservative number. Rowe was blamed for three.

The Dolphins gave up not only a record number of points, but also a team-record 643 yards, worst in the NFL in Week 1.

Flores said “at the forefront” of correcting the issues is tackling.

“There’s a lot of yards after contact last week,” Flores said. “It’s something that we’ve harped on the last couple of days and we’ll work on that today. If we tackle better, that’ll go a long way for us as a total defense.”

Flores planned contact drills. “I think we need that,” he said.

Of course, the issues aren’t restricted to the Dolphins. With teams limited on the number of padded practices they can hold in-season for safety reasons, tackling in the NFL isn’t what it used to be.

“It can be a little bit of a lost art at times,” Flores said. “It’s something that we try to place a major emphasis on. … We need to train our players on better tackling.”

INJURY REPORT: Patriots offensive tackle Marcus Cannon and tight end Matt LaCosse headlined New England’s injury report, released Wednesday.

Both players were limited in practice, along with running back Brandon Bolden (hamstring). Cannon suffered a shoulder injury in Sunday’s season opener against the Steelers. LaCosse continues to recover from an ankle injury that sidelined him in Week 1.

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