TALE OF THE TAPE

Week 4: Miami Dolphins At Arizona Cardinals

Dolphins
Cardinals
Oakland Raiders v Miami Dolphins
Oakland Raiders v Arizona Cardinals
Quarterback
It’s difficult under the best of circumstances to be a rookie quarterback in the NFL. Ryan Tannehill does not have the best of circumstances. He has a limited offensive team around him. He’s a hard working young quarterback who is trying to make the best of it, but it’s going to be a rough first year in the NFL.
Winner There’s no doubt that Kevin Kolb has the measurables that scouts have always looked for in quality quarterbacks. Despite having the size, arm strength and physical skills to be a good NFL quarterback, he’s never had NFL success until this year. There’s a long way to go, but Kolb appears to be taking the right steps.
Offense
The Dolphins’ best offensive weapon is running back Reggie Bush. He had to come out of the Week Three game vs. the Jets with a knee injury, but there was no structural damage and he could be back against the Cardinals. Davone Bess and Anthony Fasano are hardworking players who get the most out of their talent.
Winner The Cardinals continue to get a contribution from the running game. Ryan Matthews contributed 83 yards on the ground against the Eagles and that opened things up for Larry Fitzgerald, who is still one of the top receivers in the game. The offensive line is doing a solid job for head coach Ken Whisenhunt.
Defense
The Dolphins know they don’t have a lot to hold on to from an offensive perspective, so it’s up to the defense to provide the spark. Karlos Dansby is a big hitter and a solid tackler. Safety Chris Clemons came up with a pick against the Jets and is a good tackler.
Winner The Cardinals are coming off one of the best defensive efforts of the season, shutting down the explosive Eagles and holding them to two field goals. The Cardinals punished quarterback Michael Vick and nobody was more damaging than linebacker Darryl Washington who registered 2.0 sacks.
Special Teams
The heat is on placekicker Dan Carpenter, who missed two field goals in the overtime loss to the Jets. The Dolphins would have won the game had he made a 48-yard attempt in overtime. Punter Brandon Fields averaged 58.8 yards per punt against New York.
Winner The Cardinals can do a lot of damage with special teams. The duo of Dave Zastudil at punter and Jay Feely at placekicker is quite dependable, while return specialist Patrick Peterson is dynamic and has a chance to turn every opportunity into a big play.

The Winner Is

Oakland Raiders v Arizona Cardinals
Winner Cardinals
4 out of 4

Nobody had the Cardinals getting off to a 3-0 start and looking like one of the best teams in football, but that’s just what has happened. The shockingly effective play of Kevin Kolb has helped the Cardinals. The team has explosive speed on both sides of the ball and the Cardinals need to take care of business at home and not look past what appears to be a weak team.

MORE TALES OF THE TAPE

  1. KANSAS CITY, MP - JANUARY 15:  Quarterback Ben Roethlisberger #7 of the Pittsburgh Steelers looks to throw a pass against the Kansas City Chiefs during the first quarter in the AFC Divisional Playoff game at Arrowhead Stadium on January 15, 2017 in Kansas City, Missouri.  (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images) FOXBORO, MA - JANUARY 14: Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots looks to pass in the second half against the Houston Texans during the AFC Divisional Playoff Game at Gillette Stadium on January 14, 2017 in Foxboro, Massachusetts.  (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images)
    Conference Championship Tale: Pittsburgh Steelers at New England Patriots

    The Steelers and Patriots meet in Foxboro for the right to go to Super Bowl LI in Houston.

  2. ARLINGTON, TX - JANUARY 15:  Aaron Rodgers #12 of the Green Bay Packers drops back to pass during the first quarter against the Dallas Cowboys in the NFC Divisional Playoff game at AT&T Stadium on January 15, 2017 in Arlington, Texas.  (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images) ATLANTA, GA - JANUARY 14:  Matt Ryan #2 of the Atlanta Falcons drops back to pass against the Seattle Seahawks during the game at the Georgia Dome on January 14, 2017 in Atlanta, Georgia.  (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)
    Conference Championship Tale: Green Bay Packers at Atlanta Falcons

    Two MVP candidates at quarterback meet up in Atlanta for the right to go to Super Bowl LI in Houston.

  3. GREEN BAY, WI - JANUARY 8:  Aaron Rodgers #12 of the Green Bay Packers drops back to pass in the second quarter during the NFC Wild Card game against the New York Giants at Lambeau Field on January 8, 2017 in Green Bay, Wisconsin. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images) ARLINGTON, TX - DECEMBER 26: Dak Prescott #4 of the Dallas Cowboys throws against the Detroit Lions during the first half at AT&T Stadium on December 26, 2016 in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images)
    Divisional Round Tale: Green Bay Packers at Dallas Cowboys

    The Packers look to avenge a loss to the Cowboys in the regular season.

See All Tales of the Tape

More From CBS Philly

Women’s Marches Around The Globe
Science Center
PHOTOS: Trump Sworn In As President

Listen Live