SERIES RECORD -- Dolphins lead 4-2.
LAST TIME MET -- Vikings beat Dolphins 38-35 on Sept. 25, 1994, at Minnesota.
LAST WEEK -- Dolphins beat Seahawks 23-0. Vikings beat Bears 30-27.
DOLPHINS OFFENSE -- RUSH (4), PASS (24), OVERALL (15)
Rolled up 181 yards rushing. Averaged 90.8 per game last season. QB Jay Fiedler was 15-for-24 134 yards and 1 TD in first start. RB Lamar Smith had 27 carries for 145 yards and 1 TD. WR Oronde Gadsden had 2 catches for 21 yards and 1 TD. WR Leslie Shepherd had 3 catches for 30 yards.
VIKINGS OFFENSE -- RUSH (3), PASS (15), OVERALL (10)
Gained 186 yards rushing. QB Daunte Culpepper was 13-for-23 for 190 yards with 73 yards rushing (3 TDs rushing) in first career start. RB Robert Smith had 14 carries for 109 yards. WR Randy Moss had 4 catches for 89 yards with career-long 66-yard catch. WR Cris Carter had 2 catches for 26 yards. Culpepper's impressive start should open up offense for Moss and Carter.
DOLPHINS DEFENSE -- RUSH (7), PASS (1), OVERALL (1)
Allowed just 143 total yards (72 passing, 71 rushing), tops in NFL after week 1. Forced 6 turnovers (4 INTs, 2 fumbles) and had 4 sacks. DE Trace Armstrong had 2 1/2 sacks. CB Sam Madison had 2 INTs. LB Zach Thomas had 3 tackles, 7 assists and one half-sack. S Brock Marion and CB Patrick Surtain each had 1 INT. Allowed no red zone possessions. Defense, especially secondary, must repeat excellent Week 1 performance.
VIKINGS DEFENSE -- RUSH (25), PASS (26), OVERALL (28T)
Surrendered 425 total yards (153 rushing, 272 passing). LB Ed McDaniel had 13 tackles, 1 sack and 1 forced fumble. DE John Burrough had 3 tackles and 1 sack. LB Kailee Wong had 7 tackles. DB Chris Dishman had 6 tackles. Allowed 2 TDs in 3 red zone attempts.
SPECIAL TEAMS -- Dolphins K Olindo Mare was 3-for-3 on FGs (48, 25, 30 yards). P Matt Turk dropped 3 of 7 punts inside the 20. Vikings K Gary Anderson was 3-for-3 on FGs (35, 28, 45).
KEY MATCHUP -- CBs Madison and Surtain vs. WRs Moss and Carter.
STREAKS, STATS AND NOTES -- Dolphins aim for seventh straight start of 2-0 or better. ... Dolphins have best September record (27-9) over past 10 years. ... Fiedler can become first Ivy League QB to start season 2-0 since 1950. ... L.Smith's 145 yards rushing in Week 1 was most by Dolphins RB in 49 games. ... Plus-5 turnover differential is tops in NFL. ... Vikings have won last 6 home games and have won last 16 when scoring 30-or-more points. ... Culpepper's 3 TDs rushing was most ever by Vikings QB and ties club record for any player. He is first NFL QB since 1970 with 3 TDs rushing in first career start. ... Carter had 3 TDs receiving vs. Dolphins on Sept. 25, 1994. ... McDaniel needs 1 1/2 sacks for 20 for his career.
QB or not QB
Wonder if the quarterback position is changing?
Ponder this: The five second-year quarterbacks who started last week ran for a total of 244 yards on 34 carries, or 7.1 yards per. Add 60 yards in six carries for Buffalo's Rob Johnson, another of the NFL's young starters.
Then look at the rushing leaders: Chicago's Cade McNown is sixth in the NFC with 87 yards and Minnesota's Daunte Culpepper is 11th. Johnson is ninth in the AFC.
Tennessee, which is experimenting with keeping Steve McNair in the pocket, will have to unleash him at some point -- his scrambling is what got the Titans to the Super Bowl and almost won it.
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