Race for top draft pick heats up when Dolphins face Redskins
By Steve Wine
Oct 12, 2019 | 11:00 AM
The week’s worst matchup in the NFL is so bad it could be good.
The Miami Dolphins and Washington Redskins have yet to beat the point spread, much less another team. That makes Sunday’s showdown of interest — at least to the sort of folks who rubberneck at traffic accidents, and to Alabama quarterback Tua Tagovailoa, who might be drafted No. 1 in April by the team that loses.
Washington (0-5) is favored for the first time in 2019 after firing coach Jay Gruden this week. Miami (0-4), coming off a bye, has a chance for a change after being outscored by 137 points so far.
Neither team should be overestimated.
“If you don’t show up to play, then you can get beat on any given Sunday by any given team,” Miami running back Kenyan Drake said.
Case Keenum, expected to start at quarterback for Washington, isn’t opposed to the philosophy.
”If we get completions, we convert on third downs, we’re on the field more, we get to run the ball more,” Keenum said. “It’s sustaining drives. Whatever we need to do to move the ball forward, if we’re on the field more, then there’s more for everybody.”
Quarterback Josh Rosen will start his third game in a row for Miami and try to jump-start an offense that has produced only two touchdowns and four field goals. He said a victory would give the young, rebuilding Dolphins new life.
”Everything is just easier with a win,” Rosen said. “It just brings some of the joy back into the game.”
The game might be decided by simultaneous second-half collapses. After halftime Miami has been outscored 81-0, and Washington has been outscored 73-23.
Callahan had the Redskins run sprints at the end of practice this week to improve conditioning. The Dolphins noted they’ve been in contention at the break in their past three games.
”It’s cool that we have good film of good halves and we know how it should be and how it needs to go,” Miami guard Mike Deiter said. “But that’s all it is — a half. It’s got to be four quarters, or else you’re not going to win games.”