The Miami Dolphins were handily beaten by the Buffalo Bills for the second time this season, with Miami never really in contention during the game. The team had flashes, but Buffalo punched Miami in the mouth repeatedly, and the Dolphins never had an answer.
Buffalo 37 - Miami 20
The Dolphins received the kick to start the second half, with Ryan Fitzpatrick throwing an incomplete pass on first down as Allen Hurns had the ball bounce off his hands. Fitzpatrick was then incomplete again looking for Kalen Ballage this time. On 3rd-and-10, Fitzpatrick found Mike Gesicki for 10 yards, a play that should not have given the Dolphins a first down, but the spot was generous and Miami snapped the ball for the next play before Buffalo could challenge the spot. On that quick snap, Gesicki picked up no yards on a pass before Fitzpatrick scrambled up the field for 20 yards, but the play was called back on a phantom hold on Eric Boehm - the defender tripped as he rushed and the refs assumed there had to be a hold. On 3rd-and-20, Fitzpatrick found Parker for five yards, then he was sacked for a seven-yard loss, setting up 4th-and-22 and a Miami punt.
Starting with the ball at their own 47-yard line, Devin Singletary ran for no gain on first down. After a short pass that turned into a 16-yard gain from Josh Allen to Isaiah McKenzie, Allen found Cole Beasley for 15 yards, with Dolphins safety Bobby McCain sustaining a shoulder injury on the play. Singletary then ran for three yards, then fumbled and recovered his own fumble, gaining another yard. Allen then passed to John Brown for seven yards, setting up 1st-and-10 from the Miami 11 yard line, with Frank Gore picking up two yards on the play. Gore picked up another yard on the next play, setting up 3rd-and-7. Miami pressured Allen on the play, but he was able to escape around the right side and scrambled in for the score. Bills 30-14.
Fitzpatrick started the next drive with a three-yard pass to Patrick Laird, then another pass, this one for nine yards, to DeVante Parker. Fitzpatrick was sacked on the 1st-and-10 play, losing three yards. After two incomplete passes, Miami punted.
The Bills started at their own 12-yard line, with Gore picking up six yards. Then he added another one before Allen threw incomplete and Buffalo punted.
Miami started at their own 35-yard line, with Fitzpatrick throwing to Albert Wilson for a 13-yard gain. A Fitzpatrick incomplete pass was negated by a roughing the passer penalty, moving the ball to the Buffalo 37-yard line and giving Miami a new set of downs. Ballage gained no yards on the first-down play, then Fitzpatrick connected with Jakeem Grant for nine yards. Ballage ran off the left side of the line for two yards, with Fitzpatrick following that with a 12-yard pass to Laird as the quarter ended. On a Wildcat play to start the fourth quarter, Ballage picked up seven yards. The Dolphins lined up in the Wildcat again on 2nd-and-3 from the Bills seven, with Grant then taking the handoff around the right end and scoring. Miami was unsuccessful on a two-point conversion attempt. Bills 30-20.
Buffalo nearly returned the kickoff for a score, with kicker Jason Sanders having to make the play for Miami, stopping the return after a 44-yard return. Allen then looked to Brown for a seven-yard gain, followed by a six-yard gain from Singletary, but it was negated by a holding penalty on the Bills. Allen then looked toward Cole Beasley, completing the 12-yard pass, before scrambling for four yards, then throwing complete to Brown for 18 yards. Setting up at the Miami 31, Isaiah McKenize rushed for 10 yards on the end around. Singletary picked up six yards next, giving the Bills and 1st-and-Goal from the Miami nine-yard line. Allen threw to Brown for the score. Bills 37-20.
Grant tried to match his first-half kickoff return, coming up short of the endzone but giving Miami the ball at the 50-yard line. Fitzpatrick was able to find Albert Wilson for a 13-yard gain on the first-down play, then he connected with Ballage for two yards. Fitzpatrick was sacked on the next play, losing eight yards and moving Miami into a 3rd-and-16 on the Bills’ 43. After an incomplete pass, Miami attempted to convert on fourth down, with a pass from Fitzpatrick to Mike Gesicki being broken up and the Dolphins turning over the ball on downs.
Singletary picked up four yards to start the Buffalo drive, then an incomplete pass by Allen was negated by a defensive holding penalty. Allen threw complete to Singletary for four yards before two more incomplete passes ended the Bills’ drive and led to a punt.
Miami started at their eight-yard line, with Fitzpatrick throwing to Grant for a 12-yard gain. He then threw to Parker for six yards, then another eight yards from Fitzpatrick to Parker. Fitzpatrick threw low to Mike Gesicki for six yards, a pass that barely stayed off the ground but the tight end managed to pull in. Fitzpatrick threw toward Albert Wilson on 2nd-and-4, but the ball was batted into the air, with tackle Jess Davis ultimately spiking it to the ground like a volleyball. Fitzpatrick then completed a pass to Gesicki for two yards, followed by a scrambling pass to a wide open Parker for 45 yards. After an incomplete pass toward Parker in the endzone, Ballage was stopped for a two-yard loss on a swing pass. Grant then picked up 11 yards on a pass from Fitzpatrick before the quarterback was stopped on a 4th-and-1 quarterback sneak attempt, and Miami turned over the ball on downs.
The Bills started their drive at their four-yard line, using Gore to kill some of the clock with a one-yard run. After Miami used their last timeout, Gore picked up another two yards, setting up 3rd-and-7. After a four-yard gain from Gore, the Bills punted again.
Miami started the drive with a 12-yard pass from Fitzpatrick to Laird, leading to the 2-minute warning. Fitzpatrick went back to Laird on the next play, picking up 11 yards. Fitzpatrick found Laird again, this time gaining three yards, before another sack on Fitzpatrick. He then threw to Laird again for 10 yards, before an incomplete pass on fourth down ended the drive.
Buffalo knelt to kill the clock.
The Dolphins looked a little more cohesive in the second half, but they were still being outplayed by the Bills. The defense allowed too many chunk plays, while the offense tried to force Ballage to find success, but struggled any time they handed off the ball.
Miami had their seventh different offensive line combination in this game, and to say this one was not the top performer of the group would be an understatement. This offensive line struggled all game, both in pass protection and opening up running lanes. Expect a new offensive line combination next week.
The Bills looked like the better team all game, which really is not a surprise this year. This was a heavyweight fight, and the Dolphins were not in the same weight class.
As usual, Allen had a strong day against Miami, throwing for 256 yards with three touchdowns and rushing for 56 yards with another touchdown.
Meanwhile, Miami had a strong performance from Parker, who went over 100 yards for the first time this year, catching seven passes for 135 yards. Fitzpatrick was 32-for-45 for 323 yards, but he was sacked seven times and was never comfortable behind the offensive line.