The Dolphins running game provided what the offense needed to help protect Ryan Tannehill and the Dolphins offense from being predictable (i.e. one dimensional). Daniel Thomas and Lamar Miller combined for 103 yards on 21 carries. Unfortunately, the Dolphins went away from the run late in the game. Tannehill had not been sacked until the 4th quarter. The Dolphins ran the ball 3 times in the 4th quarter. Their first drive of the 4th quarter was a 3 and out that consisted of three passes. In their second drive, Tannehill was sacked for 9 yards on the first play at which point the Dolphins ran it out of the shotgun on the next two out of three plays. Each run gained 1 yard.
The Dolphins wide receivers caught 16 passes for 185 yards and two touchdowns. Brandon Gibson had both touchdowns but Mike Wallace made a big play late in the 1st half to set the Dolphins up on a scoring drive and Brian Hartline was his typical self, making timely catches when needed.
The Dolphins safety tandem had a nice game, producing 12 tackles, 1 sack and 1 interception between Reshad Jones and Chris Clemons.
Mike Sherman finds things that work such as a power running game, a moving pocket and hitting Mike Wallace deep and he goes away from these things and reverts back to the pass happy offense that causes Ryan Tannehill to get sacked because he has an offensive line, particularly a right side, that cannot protect him. When the Dolphins pass ratio skyrockets, the trouble begins. And yet Sherman can't get out of his own way, especially late in games. With the way the Dolphins defense was playing and the way the Dolphins had success running the ball, I would have been content with three straight runs and a punt late in the game when Tannehill was sacked and fumbled the ball. But Sherman went back to the same quick passing game that teams know is the Dolphins bread and butter and we all saw the result.
Tyson Clabo needs to get benched. Nate Garner cannot be any worse than Clabo. I really wanted Clabo to succeed and was happy when we signed him, but he has been such a huge liability in pass protection and the Dolphins cannot run behind the right side. He may actually be worse than Marc Columbo.
The Dolphins were 3 of 13 on third down. The Bills were 9 of 19 (being live at the game, I didn't think we were that bad on defense on third downs). Couple that with losing the turnover battle 3 to 1 and the result is that the Dolphins beat themselves against a team with a quarterback that was promoted off the practice squad recently.
Ryan Tannehill had one of those frustrating games inexperienced QBs will often have. He started off with a pick 6 and threw another pick when we were in scoring position. He shook it off to throw three touchdown passes and get the Dolphins back in the game and they eventually took a 21-17 lead. He was finding success getting outside of the pocket. However, as the pressure came on in the 4th quarter and the Dolphins reverted to their vanilla offense, his fumble turned out to be the deciding play in the game. Tannehill is partially to blame as this was a three step drop and he had to get rid of the ball quickly, but ultimately it was a stupid playcall by Mike Sherman.
The Dolphins started off 3-0 and are now 3-3 on a 3 game losing streak. They looked poised to make a play off run after some tough wins against the Colts, Browns and Falcons, but have now lost to the Saints in a blowout and had tough losses against the Ravens and Bills. Next up are the Patriots in Foxboro. With a leaky offensive line, especially on the right side, and a stubborn coaching staff that seems to revert to things that are proven not to work and with a quarterback that has been hit so much this season that it has to be affecting his psyche, it will take a monumental shift in momentum for the Dolphins to beat the Patriots.
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