Barry Jackson

Here are four areas where the Dolphins lead the league. And they’re a big reason why Miami is 4-2

A six-pack of Dolphins notes on a Monday night:

There are four categories that the Dolphins lead the league in, and all have contributed to them winning four of their first six games:

1) Opponents are scoring touchdowns on just 36.4 percent of goal-to-go series against Miami, the best mark in the league.

2) Opponents are scoring touchdowns on just 57.1 percent of red zone series against the Dolphins, the best mark in the league.

3) Miami’s 11 interceptions leads the NFL. (The 14 turnovers forced are tied for third in the league. The 81.9 opponent passer rating is fifth in the NFL.)

4) The Dolphins also lead the league in passing touchdowns of 20 yards or more, with eight. Four of those eight are a huge reason why Miami rallied to beat Oakland and Chicago. The Chargers, Jets and Steelers are next with seven passing plays of 20 yards or more, incidentally.

And there’s this, too: The Dolphins’ 541 net yards on Sunday were the fifth-most in team history - behind four games quarterbacked by Dan Marino - and most since 1988.

Here’s how Pro Football Focus assessed Brock Osweiler’s first Dolphins start: “Although his box score numbers were eye-popping to say the least, it’s worth mentioning that 280 of his 380 passing yards came after the catch and 268 of his 380 yards came on passes thrown less than 10 yards beyond the line of scrimmage. Osweiler made a few turnover-worthy throws and finished the game with a 56.6 overall grade.

“Osweiler deserves credit considering the defense he was going up against and the fact that he did earn the win and should be more prepared for a potential Week 7 matchup with the Detroit Lions if Ryan Tannehill is not ready to return.”

Laremy Tunsil and Ja’Wuan James were excellent on Sunday, so much so that PFF said Sunday was Khalil Mack’s lowest-graded game of his career (47.8).

PFF said “both tackles (Tunsil and James) deserve a ton of credit for their efforts against the All-Pro, as Mack rushed the passer 17 times from the left side and 12 times from the right side. Mack was only able to generate one quarterback pressure on the day - he had racked up at least four in every other game this season.”

Couple defensive notes from PFF:

T.J. McDonald and Xavien Howard graded out as Miami’s top two players on defense Sunday, with Howard allowing two of three passes thrown against him to be caught for only six yards….

And PFF noted that with Cam Wake and Charles Harris sidelined, Cameron Malveaux “stepped up and made an impact in his 32 snaps of action. Malveaux earned the fouth-highest grade for the defensive at 73.1 overall, generating two quarterback pressures and a stop as well. The Dolphins would be wise to continue giving Malveaux snaps moving forward, as he’s earned a 77.7 overall grade over the last two weeks filling in as a reserve.”

Frank Gore became the fifth player since the AFL/NFL merger in 1970 to produce a 100-yard rushing game at age 35 or older. He joins a list of Emmitt Smith, Marcus Allen, John Riggins and MacArthur Lane. Smith was the last to do it on Oct. 24, 2004 vs. Seattle.

Gore, incidentally, is the NFL’s third leading rusher since 2015, behind only Todd Gurley (3919 yards) and LeSean McCoy (3543). Gore has 3256 yards in that span – 47 yards ahead of Melvin Gordon, who’s fourth on the list.

PFF’s top five Dolphins offensive grades for Sunday went, in order, to Gore, Nick O’Leary, Albert Wilson, Tunsil and James.

Jakeem Grant still leads the NFL in kickoff/punt return yards with 521, which is 78 yards more than anyone else in the league. He’s also the only NFL player with two return TDs this season.

Grant’s 710 all-purpose yards rank ninth in the league through six weeks. Gurley is first with 870.

Please click here for more of my Dolphins nuggets from Monday.

Please click here for my Heat post from Monday.

Please click here for buzz on top Marlins target Victor Victor Mesa.

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