DAVIE—In a game that figures to be a defensive scrum, the forecasted rain and/or in the Northeast will make points even tougher to get when the Dolphins visit the Jets on Saturday.
Miami already has been cautious with kicker Andrew Franks’ range this year, most recently bypassing a 52-yard field goal try against San Francisco in favor of punting. He kicked the game-winner in the rain last weekend, though it was one of the shortest kicks possible at 21 yards.
When the Dolphins arrive at MetLife Stadium on Saturday evening, one of the first orders of business is to determine a maximum range for Franks at each end of the field. That decision won’t be up to him, but rather special teams coordinator Darren Rizzi and assistant Marwan Maalouf.
“Franks goes through his routine before the game; Rizzi and Louf let me know what my range is, really, going both ways, and then I have a better idea where my starting point is,” coach Adam Gase said. “And then when we get in certain situations where it’s second-and-10, that’s when the discussions start where Rizzi is on the line with me. My question will be ‘Where’s my range at? Are we still at the same thing?’ Then I start processing, ‘Do I need to have that third down (play) and fourth down (play) ready to go?’”
So most likely there will be a shorter range for Franks this weekend, but the team won’t determine that until just before the game.
Franks is 14 for 18 on field goals this season and has made all 31 extra points. He is 7 of 9 on field goals 30 yards or longer with a long of 41. His misses have been from 27, 50, 24 and 46 yards.
When Miami punted rather than let him try from 52 yards, Gase’s rationale was that he preferred to let Matt Darr try to stick the 49ers deep in their own territory. He did not express any lack of confidence in Franks, though that decision speaks for itself.
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