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Preseason Preview: Cowboys Vs. Dolphins

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Preview: Cowboys Vs. Dolphins

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In the preseason, teams don't do a lot of advance scouting on the opposition, but we know that it helps to know who's looming on the other side of the field from the Cowboys. Here's a look at the Dolphins ahead of Wednesday night's game.

The Opponent: Give the Dolphins credit for understanding the nature of the media beast. They decided to do Hard Knocks and then embarked on a crazy summer of quarterback battles, Chad Johnson nonsense, oddly timed trades of starting quarterbacks and other things that make for better television than final standings.

Last Season: The Dolphins started the year 0-7, sealing the fate of coach Tony Sparano and underlining the need for a new direction in just about every area of the team. The one real bright spot was Reggie Bush looking something like the back that went No. 2 overall instead of the guy famous for losing his Heisman and cavorting with Kim Kardashian.

The Offseason: The two biggest moves of the offseason were drafting Ryan Tannehill in the first round and signing Johnson to play wide receiver. Johnson's long gone but Tannehill is starting, mostly because David Garrard is hurt but that's a step in the right direction for a team that has rotated quarterbacks the way Kardashian has rotated cavorting partners.

The Line: Cowboys by 3, which seems like a pretty fair line for a game that will barely include starting players. Or not. We can't actually fathom how they come up with these lines.

The Coach: Joe Philbin was something of an odd choice for the Dolphins, who otherwise run their team like a mix between the Jets and the Cowboys. Philbin is a low-key guy who doesn't really stand out for anything in particular after years as an anonymous assistant in Green Bay. That's not a bad thing at all, just an odd fit given how much the Dolphins seem to be interested in flash.

The Offense: You know how the Cowboys have had a crew of underwhelming receivers fighting for snaps as the third receiver this summer? Imagine if the same group of guys were vying for the top spot and you've got a good view of the Dolphins offense. Throw in a rookie tournament and an injury for tackle Jake Long to make a foul-smelling stew.

The Defense: The Dolphins traded cornerback Vontae Davis to the Colts over the weekend for a couple of draft picks, which is a nice return on a player that Hard Knocks fans will recognize as a walking blunder machine. That didn't seem to sit very well with the rest of the defense, which will be problematic if it causes their play to slip from last season because that offense looks like a frightful mess.

Key Matchup: Staying upright vs. Napping on the couch - As with any final preseason game, napping is a heavy favorite.

Related Topics Dolphins, Cowboys, Preseason
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