The Dolphins came into this match with alarm bills ringing, literally. At 3.30am on Sunday morning the team hotel's fire alarms went off, only for it to be a false alarm. But that shouldn't be an excuse for the Dolphins' loss to the Bills. The team was terrible, and deserved to lose this game. Quarterback Ryan Tannehill finished the game with 10 completions off 27 passes for 82 yards. The star of the show was defensive tackle Kyle Williams, who had two of Buffalo's season-best 7 sacks to close out a 19-0 win.
To make the loss even worse for the Dolphins, Buffalo won without rookie quarterback EJ Manuel, and finished the game without their top three wide receivers. Rookie Marquise Goodwin left the game in the first quarter with a knee injury, Robert Woods was removed from the game after punching safety Reshad Jones and Veteran Stevie Johnson was unable to play on Sunday due to the death of is mother.
Back-up Bills quarterback Thad Lewis completed 15 of 25 passes for 195 yards and an interceptions, but it was the ground attack that won the day. Running back Fred Jackson had 111 rushing yards and a touchdown as the team scored a combined 203 yards on the ground.
Back to the drawing board for the Dolphins.
New York Jets coach Rex Ryan apparently told his team on Saturday night that he was going to be fired. He certainly may have hastened that process with a spectacular fake punt fail that will brighten up the day for any Dolphins fan. But that was the only dampener on the day as Geno Smith threw two touchdown passes to David Nelson and ran for another score as the Jets toppled the Browns on Sunday. This was the first time since October that Smith had made two touchdowns or more, with no turnovers or sacks. The young quarterback finished the day with 20 completions from 36 passes for 214 yards. With Rex Ryan seemingly on his way out, the Jets look set for a new dawn next season.
The Baltimore Ravens saw their playoff hopes diminish as they were put to the sword by the Patriots in a heavy defeat. A win against the Patriots would have put them in a position to compete for the AFC North title, but turnovers and sloppy play consigned them to defeat. Joe Flacco finished the game with 22 completions out of 38 for 260 yards and two interceptions. The team relied on the running game, but switched their tactics to throwing the football as the Ravens fell behind. However, the passing game never clicked as they Ravens struggled against a fine defensive performance from the Patriots who accumulated 4 sacks on the day.
The loss gifts the AFC North championship to the Bengals, and allows Miami in with a shot of making the playoffs.