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Keys to the game
December 5, 2010 - Mike McLain
As kick off for the Browns-Miami Dolphins game nears, here are a few keys to watch for today:
It goes without saying that Jake Delhomme has to be more careful with the ball in his hands. He still looks a lot like the quarterbacks that threw 18 interceptions in 11 games last season.
The Browns don't win games without good showings by running back Peyton Hillis. Today will be no different. The Dolphins are better than average on defense and will make a concerted effort to slow down Hillis.
The defense needs to tackle better. There' been too much of throwing the body at the runner instead of using arms to wrap them up. Rookie safety T.J. Ward has played well, but he missed a couple key stops against the Jets and Jaguars.
There's nothing the Browns can do to replace linebacker Scott Fujita, who will miss a third straight game with a knee injury. Fujita's absence has been noticeable. He's usually in the right place, and he'a a sure tackler. The Browns can only hope that David Bowens plays well.
Matt Roth, a former Dolphin, won't say that this game is special to him because of the way he was let go by the Dolphins last season. Management said he should have been on the field quicker from a groin injury. Roth said that wasn't possible after two surgeries in as many years. Roith should be fired up. A big day for him would help immeasurably.
The Browns received some good news when Dolphins receiver Brandon Marshall was ruled out with a hamstring injury. Marshall is a big receiver that gave the Browns fits when he played in Denver. Bolstered by Marshall's absence, the secondary needs to play well aganst inconsistent Dolphins quarterback Chad Henne.
Receivers Brian Robiskie and Mohamed Massaquoi had their best combined performances in their two season with the Browns last week. They'll need to play well today to ease the burden on Hillis.
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