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Ndamukong Suh finally shows up for the Dolphins

It took a few weeks, but the big-money defensive tackle has found a rhythm under interim head coach Dan Campbell.

The Miami Dolphins spent a lot in free agency, more than any other team thanks to the six-year, $114 million deal they handed to defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh. One of the league's very best defensive players, Suh hit the market for the first time this offseason and hit it in a big way, with the Dolphins scrambling to get him signed at seemingly any cost.

But Suh has drawn more than his fair share of criticism for his play this season. He didn't record a single sack prior to Week 7 and Miami's defensive front hasn't been great against the run, allowing 129.3 yards per game on the ground. Sunday against the Houston Texans was a different story though, and Suh showed why the Dolphins were so eager to give him a massive paycheck this offseason.

On Sunday, it was almost like Houston's offensive line didn't exist. Suh recorded six tackles, five solo, with a pair of sacks and three tackles for loss. He also deflected two passes and was credited with three quarterback hits. Outside of a fourth quarter that saw the Texans put points on the board when the game was well out of reach, the Dolphins limited Brian Hoyer in the passing game, and held the running game in check, too.

The Texans did themselves no favors on offense, but Suh was the catalyst for a stout, aggressive Miami defense for the first time this season. In their first seven drives, the Texans had six three-and-outs and an interception returned for a touchdown. At one point in the game, Houston had negative-2 total yards of offense and the Dolphins took a commanding 42-0 lead into halftime.

"We're executing, we're doing what we're supposed to be doing," Suh said, when asked about the defense's play under interim head coach Dan Campbellvia the Miami Herald. "We're playing hard. We've got great energy. We're feeding off of each other. Offense, defense and special teams. So it's a good storm and we're going to continue to go with it, especially on Thursday."

The Dolphins have a long way to go if they're going to compete in the AFC East this year. They sit at 3-3, with two consecutive wins since Campbell took over once Joe Philbin was fired. Neither the Tennessee Titans nor the Texans are considered good teams, but the Dolphins scored 82 points and allowed just 36 in those two games, so something is working.

But a lot more will have to go right for the Dolphins to really have a chance against the New England Patriots. The two teams will face off on Thursday, and the Patriots have looked unstoppable this season. They are 6-0 on the season after a close win against the New York Jets and have scored 30-plus points in all but one of their games.

Fortunately for the Dolphins, the defense as a whole appears to be responding to Campbell -- Suh included. And if he plays anywhere close to the dominant, scary defensive tackle he was with the Detroit Lions, the Dolphins will be in good shape.

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SB Nation presents: The Dolphins totally mutilated the Texans early on Sunday