The first game in the AFC East saw the Tampa Bay Buccaneers pitted up against a New England Patriots team that only just scraped through their previous two games. Tom Brady finally clicked with his rookie wide receivers as Kenbrell Thompkins caught two touchdown passes and Aaron Dobson had seven receptions on the day as the Patriots swept past the Buccaneers. Tampa Bay quarterback had another bad game for the Bucs, completing only 19 of 41 passes for 236 yards. Running back Doug Martin was also held by the Patriots for 88 rushing yards on twenty runs, one week after he gained 144. Brady has now scored at least one touchdown in the last 51 consecutive games for the Patriots.
Buffalo Bills 20 - 27 New York Jets
Elsewhere in the AFC East saw the battle of the two rookie quarterbacks, Geno Smith and E.J. Manuel. Geno Smith threw two touchdown passes, including a 69-yard flier to Santonio Holmes in the fourth quarter, as the New York Jets hung on to beat Buffalo despite conceding a franchise-record 20 penalties. In a game that was tough to watch at times, the Jets racked up 168 yards in penalty yardage to nearly gift the Bills the game. On a drive helped by four straight penalties on the Jets, E.J. Manuel threw a 33-yard touchdown to Scott Chandler, before hitting Stevie Johnson for a 2-point conversion to tie the game at 20 with 10:39 left to go. But that wasn't enough for the Bills as the Jets escaped with a 27-20 win against their divisional rivals to leave them rock bottom in the division.
Atlanta Falcons 23 - 27 Miami Dolphins
Welcome to the big time, Mr. Ryan Tannehill. The crowd went wild at Sun Life Stadium as Tannehill lobbed a neat 1-yard pass to Dion Sims with 38 seconds to spare in the game. Miami fell behind 10-0 and then 20-10, but rallied to overcome a strong Falcons team. The buzz at the stadium was there for all to see as 70,660 fans witnessed a resurgent Dolphins team aiming to record their first winning season in four years. Tannehill completed 24 of his 35 for 236 yards and two touchdowns. Tannehill was at his best at the end of both halves as he gave up two turnovers and withstood five sacks.
On the final drive of the game Tannehill went 8 for 11 for 69 yards as he lobbed his throw over linebacker Stephen Nicholas to tight end Dion Sims for his first career touchdown. On Tannehill's other touchdown, Brian Hartline caught a 18-yarder to make it 20-20 late in the third quarter.
The game will be a disappointment for the Atlanta Falcons as they started the game fast by scoring on their first three possessions and enjoyed advantages of 24 first downs to Miami's 16, and 377 to Miami's 285 yards. Jacquizz Rodgers and Jason Snelling also had good days at the office, combining for 139 rushing yards.
Lamar Miller also had a 49-yard run to set up the Dolphins first touchdown, but other than that Miami's running attack once again failed to gain significant yardage. Special teams arguably made the play of the day when rookie Don Jones jarred the ball from punt returner Harry Douglas as John Denney recovered the football.
It's clear that Miami still have much work to do with their offensive line. Nonetheless this was a great win for the Dolphins as they went 3-0 for the first time since 2002, and have a great shot at the playoffs this year.
What do you think about the games in the AFC East this past weekend. Do you think the Dolphins can win the division? Lets hear your thoughts.