A generalized edict in indulgent is to watch of the Trendy Team. The community as a rule gets it in its mind that this troop or that unit is going to have a "breakout" period of time or be a "sleeper" this time period. The bother is, once all and sundry thinks that nearly a unit they're no longest a "sleeper". They're bound by the heavy, fresh alloy seizing of expectations.

That, and The Public is as a rule fallacious.

That's where we're at beside Miami. They ran off six ordered wins to end 2005, ready-made a few high-profile moves in the offseason, and are now the swayer harvest to go out of the AFC East. Hype is the buss of annihilation. But to be trusty next to you, within may be several be worthy of to all of this.

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The purchase of Dante Culpepper gives the Dolphins doings a pacesetter that they haven't had since whatsoever Marino guy took his Isotoners and went address. His skilfulness to unvaryingly propulsion the vast ball should reenergize the careers of Chris Chambers and Marty Booker. Also, the quality defending team can be a not bad offensive activity.

However, in attendance are destiny concerns. Ricky Williams was banished to Canada. Miami subscribed job underachievers L.J. Shelton, Dan Wilkinson and Will Allen. There's the lumbering Jason Taylor-Zach Thomas separation point (they're not divorcing all other, but Taylor is separating from Thomas' sister). Culpepper didn't exactly quit Minnesota nether the selected of circumstances, and he wasn't Mr. Reliable once he was here.

All in all, this is a resilient team to read. The natural ability is there, but near more than a few volatile personalities and illogical performers decorating the list you have to reflect on how trying you can constrict the Dolphins. It will be a read-and-react set-up. And don't be jiggered if they force the classic Start With a Bang, Finish With a Whimper that Miami is best-known for.

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Here's Doc's 2006 Miami Dolphins Preview:

2005 Record: 9-7 (5-3 home, 4-4 road)

2005 Rankings: 14th offense (16th pass, 12th spill over); 18th defense (20th pass, 17th hasten)

2005 Against the Spread: 7-9 (3-5 home, 4-4 road); 8-8 vs. inclusive (5-3 h, 3-5 r)

2006 Odds: 22/1 to win SB, 11/1 to win AFC, 2/1 to win AFC East, 9.0 wins O/U

2006 Strength of Schedule: 27th (.469 opp. win %)

Key stat: Defensively, the Fins allowed honourable 3.7 yards per get (7th in the league). Offensively they managed 4.3 yards per unreserved (8th in the league).

Returning starters: 17 (8 offense, 9 squad)

Key acquisitions: Daunte Culpepper, QB (from Minn.); Will Allen, CB (from NYG); Jason Allen, CB (draft); L.J. Shelton, OT (from Cleve.); Fred Beasley, FB (from S.F.); Joey Harrington, QB (from Detroit); Kelly Campbell, WR (from Minn.); Dan Wilkinson, DT (from Detroit)

Key departures: Ricky Williams, RB; David Boston, WR; Reggie Howard, CB; Sam Madison, CB; Tebucky Jones, S; Stockar McDougle, OT; Lance Schulters, S; Junior Seau, LB.

Offense: The tools are in place, but now they have to anticipation that Culpepper can be the straw that stirs the infusion. Ronnie Brown inevitably to linger healthy, and some Chambers and Booker obligation to manoeuvre up. The stripe made tremendous strides past season, and will now be negatively charged beside protecting Culpepper's knee. A lot of that social control water on the shoulders of Shelton, who has a million-dollar unit and a 10-cent herald. They had the eighth-worst third-down conversion rate closing period of time (35.1 per centum) which helped bestow to their No. 30 clip of possession commanding.

Defense: The Miami team compete finer than its commanding last period. Their 49 sacks were 2nd top-quality in the league, and they were No. 7 hostile the run in status of yards per carry resistant (3.7). However, the top eight caring lineman in their motion medium 33 years old. I gut feeling the dandy information is that at hand are eight of them. They squandered some protrusive corners, but coincidentally Miami doesn't face many a pass-happy teams this yr. A lot body of water on the vigour of Thomas in the hub because they have miniscule understanding at LB. That's likewise why it's so central for Channing Crowder to engineer an contact.

X-factor: Culpepper. Can the knee joint clasp up? If not, I ruminate Joey Harrington is a extreme guarantee canon. However, if they deprivation to have a superior time period it will be on the arm, er, knee joint of Culpepper.

Outlook: I'm mangled on the Dolphins. They've standard a lot of hype, and I see a lot of latent landmines, but I did select them to win the division. I don't look-alike Culpepper. I've never liked him. And their defending team is old. But honestly, this amass reflects the high esteem that I have for Nick Saban. We will see.

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