3 Concerning position groups for Miami Dolphins vs. Tennessee Titans today

Jay Cutler needs help, but he needs to help himself, too. (Photo by Henry Browne/Getty Images)

The Dolphins open their season at home on Sunday, one month after it was supposed to happen.

But that’s all water under the London Bridge.

The Dolphins need a bounce back against the Titans, a team that trounced them last year.

Here are some position groups that must perform well in order for the Fins to pull off the upset:

Offensive Line

Tennessee’s defensive line is legit. They are physical. Pass-rushing linebacker Brian Orakpo against left tackle Laremy Tunsil is a matchup to watch. One year ago, Orakpo embarrassed left tackle Billy Turner, who was promptly cut within days. Titans defensive tackle Jurrell Casey against Miami guards Anthony Steen and Jermon Bushrod is not a favorable matchup, on paper. Last year, coach Adam Gase came away from a loss to the Titans saying Ryan Tannehill didn’t have a chance. Last year, tackle Ja’Wuan James was beaten by Titans defensive end Derrick Morgan. Here’s hoping Tunsil took his pregame shower Saturday night.

Linebackers

Middle linebacker Rey Maualuga is supposed to make his debut on Sunday. It will be interesting to see if Maualuga is ready to help slow down Tennessee’s running attack, led by DeMarco Murray and Derrick Henry. The Titans humiliated Miami on the ground last season, but this has looked like a different defense against the run. William Hayes and Lawrence Timmons should have positive impacts. Reshad Jones had his best game of the season last year. Kiko Alonso is due to create a turnover. Tennessee has a big, powerful, talented offensive line. When Miami’s linebackers have their defining moments against those Big Uglies on Sunday, they must be ready to win.

MISS THIS? [A conversation with rookie DB Cordrea Tankersley]

Quarterback

It turns out Jay Cutler has performed really well throughout his career against the Titans. They’re based in Nashville, where Cutler lives. Cutler, of course, was a star at Vanderbilt, also based in Nashville. Cutler needs to make good decisions under pressure on Sunday. Cutler needs to get rid of the ball quicker and not put himself in a position to take a huge loss on a sack or fumble. Cutler must be more accurate. Cutler must get his feet in better position. Cutler must avoid appearing skittish. Cutler must trust his receivers. He has very, very talented receivers, but you wouldn’t know if the last two weeks. Cutler must use his feet for a good cause. Move in and around the pocket to avoid pressure. Make an unscheduled play when things break down. Just be better, man.

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