Miami Should Follow The SF Blueprint & Game Prediction

This week, the Miami Dolphins are out west and likely staying out west for 2 of their 4 West coast games this year.

The San Francisco 49ers are the first of four. Coming off a Super Bowl appearance in 2019 after spending the previous season at 4-12. They have been the biggest example in the NFL on how to rebuild a franchise. Their model has mostly been in the trenches.

General Manager John Lynch got hired in 2017 along with Former Atlanta Falcons OC Kyle Shanahan. They were coming off a 2-14 season in 2016, which the last time these two teams met. It was a game where Colin Kaepernick and the Niners drove down the field in an attempt to tie the game. Kaepernick was stopped at the 2-yard line by Ndamukong Suh and Kiko Alonso and the time expired, Dolphins win, 31-24.

These two teams look really different now. What has happened since with the Niners?

The 49ers used 4 of their 6 first-round picks from 2017-2020 in the trenches.

2017: Let’s not forget that they were the beneficiary of the Chicago Bears trading up one spot in 2017 to draft QB Trubisky, obtaining a 3rd, a 4th, and a 3rd in 2018, to trade back one spot, and still got the guy they wanted in DE Solomon Thomas at 3rd overall. They traded back into the first round to get LB Reuben Foster, but that relationship did not end well as he faced domestic violence issues and got released. He is now on the Washington Football team.  That same draft, they got All-pro TE George Kittle in the 5th round out of Iowa.

Before the 2018 offseason, in the middle of the 2017 season  49ers traded for Patriots QB Jimmy Garoppolo for a 2nd round pick. The Niners started 1-10, and as soon as Jimmy G was placed in the starting lineup, and SF won 5 straight to end the season, they thought they might’ve found their guy.

2018: So in 2018 offseason, John Lynch decided to give Garoppolo a contract extension, a 5-year $137.5M contract. In that first round, they drafted Mike McGlinchey, to add along with their HOF tackle Joe Staley, and to protect their prized QB. Signed Former Seahawk CB Richard Sherman after being released after a torn Achilles, improving the secondary. That season was an ugly one. People thought it was time for SF to take that step. However, in Week 3 against the Kansas City Chiefs, Jimmy G suffered a season-ending injury on his knee, a torn ACL. The Niners ended their season at 4-12.

2019: Despite finishing 4-12, they had the number 2 overall pick in the 2020 NFL draft, drafting DE Nick Bosa out of Ohio State, and he made an impact early and often. Drafted their reliable WR Deebo Samuel in the 2nd round out of South Carolina. This 49er team went from worst to first, finishing 13-3, a defensive line who got after the QB often, established a strong running game with Raheem Mostert, Tevin Coleman, and Matt Breida, this 49ers team was a team nobody wanted to face. However, they fell short in Super Bowl 54, losing 31-20 against the Kansas City Chiefs, after leading 20-10 to start to 4th quarter. That game showed the Super Stardom of Patrick Mahomes, but that’s a discussion for another day. Kyle Shanahan’s play-calling once again bit him as he played too conservative with the lead and went away from who they were all season. If they stuck to what got them there, The Dolphins would be facing the Super Bowl Champions, as opposed to the NFC Champions.

2020: After making it to the Super Bowl, both Kyle Shanahan and John Lynch received contract extensions this offseason. Lynch was also to reset the cap on the defensive line, San Francisco traded away DE DeForest Buckner to the Indianapolis Colts for s 1st round pick(Indy later gave Buckner an extension), that pick was 13th overall. Before they used their pick, they traded back a spot with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers(TB selected T Tristan Wirfs). Many thought that they were gonna use that pick on a WR, but they stuck to what got them to the Super Bowl, building the tranches, so they selected DT Javon Kinlaw out of South Carolina. They later used one of the picks they obtained from TB as an asset to trade up from 31 to 25 with Minnesota to draft WR Brandon Aiyuk. Bringing in another weapon for Jimmy Garoppolo, only to help the 49ers get one step closer to reaching the Super Bowl once again.

This San Francisco 49ers rebuild is something I’m sure the Dolphins front office has looked at from afar, as Miami is in their own attempt to rebuild this franchise. Dolphins similarly in the 2019 and 2020 draft have drafted 2 trench players(DT Christian Wilkins and OT Austin Jackson). Also signed a big name defensive back, just like the Niners, in Byron Jones, who is scheduled to return this Sunday from a groin injury. Looks like Miami is following that same blueprint San Francisco had done, Miami is just a few years behind, which is why San Francisco is favored to win this game, as they should.

Yes, the 49ers are facing Injuries, such as DE Nick Bosa, DE Solomon Thomas, and DE Ezekiel Ansah both out for the year. DE Dee Ford is out until at least week 7. Raheem Mostert Deebo Samuel both are listed as Questionable. They’re also getting Jimmy G back this week. Yes, he might now make the huge throws that everybody wants him to make, but that offense is different with him in the lineup. He’s super-valuable to that 49ers team.

The Tua chants have been getting louder by Dolphins fans, understandably so. I don’t think this is the game you want Tua to have his first start, not against the NFC Champions. I’m sure the Dolphins have been looking ahead(for me, I think he’s going to start against Denver if they lose). We may see him inserted at halftime, who knows! Your guess is as good as mine. A Dolphins win hushes that conversation for at least a week. However, Jared Goff of the LA Rams got his first start a week after the Rams beat the Jets with Case Keenum starting. Jared Goff’s first NFL start happens to be against, the Miami Dolphins. So maybe we’ll even see Tua inserted against Denver even with a win.

Ryan Fitzpatrick will be under center again, and he has not played well. The rush defense has been an issue, along with getting to the QB. The lack of pass rush gives WR’s time to get separation on the Miami secondary. The good news is, Byron Jones is expected to return this Sunday, so help is on the way! The Niners depth and where they are in this rebuild, despite SF being at 2-2, they’re better than what their record shows. You guys know this though, they were just in the Super Bowl. I’m confident, however, that if the Miami Dolphins follow that blueprint that the 49ers have done through their 4 years, that Miami will soon be there, just not this Sunday.

Prediction: San Francisco 35, Miami 24.