Patriots Fall to Dolphins, Lose Ground in Race With Steelers
Photo Credit: Daily Dolphin
It was a trip down to Earth as the Miami Dolphins defeated the New England Patriots 27-20 to fall to 10-3
The Dolphins began the game moving up and down the field against their rival team. However, the Patriots defense hung on with their bend don’t break philosophy.
The Patriots offense however looked completely out of sync in the first quarter with quarterback Tom Brady throwing an interception and not recording any passing yards in the first quarter. In fact the team itself only had three yards of total offense in the first quarter of play.
The Patriots finally got something going with great field position after a McCourty sack pushed a Matt Haack punt back behind the five yard line.
Brady commandeered the offense down the field with running back Rex Burkhead catching the ball and running it into the end zone for the team’s first points of the day.
The Dolphins marched right down the field to take the lead with safety Jordan Richards missing a chance on a sack leading to a bootleg pass to Jarvis Landry.
Poor clock management by Brady and a failed third down conversion gave them another three points to come within a field goal of Miami before the end of the first half.
Brady ended the first half not completing a pass to a wide receiver with 10 passes completed to his running backs and one to tight end Dwayne Allen.
Brady started the second half the way he began the first throwing an interception to cornerback Xavien Howard on a slightly under thrown pass against Brandin Cooks.
Cutler continued in the words of Sergio Dipp continued “having the time of his life” against the Patriots as he capped off the drive with a big touchdown pass to wide receiver Jakeem Grant.
The Patriots remained silent punting it back to the Dolphins after another failed third down attempt.
Landry scored his second touchdown of the day on the following drive to put the Dolphins up by 17.
Brady and the Patriots finally came alive as the reigning Super Bowl MVP led the team down the field capping the drive with a touchdown pass to running back James White.
Gostkowski scored a field goal in the last minute of the game to put the Patriots within a touchdown for the first time since the beginning of the game.
After an poorly executed onside kick, the Dolphins took a knee sealing both head coach Adam Gase’s and quarterback Jay Cutler’s first win all-time against the Patriots.
Overall the Patriots were on cruise control the entire game not converting on a third down in a game for the first time since the 1990’s. It is clear that they have their sights set on the Pittsburgh Steelers and that matchup which will potentially decide who will receive home-field advantage throughout the playoffs.
Top Performers: Offense – 1 Defense – 1
Rex Burkhead: With Gillislee inactive again, Burkhead has taken the role as the goal line back and has embraced it. He has shown versatility as one of the team’s wide receiver/ running back hybrids and has over 200 yards from scrimmage in both departments this season.
Patrick Chung: What happened to Chung after he returned from Philadelphia we may never know as he continued to establish himself as one of the league’s best strong safeties.
He exhibited poise covering the big tight end Julius Thomas all game as well as being physical in the run game.