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Dolphins at Patriots final score, immediate reactions, and recap

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Miami Dolphins v New England Patriots Photo by Adam Glanzman/Getty Images

The Miami Dolphins and New England Patriots finished their Week 17 season finale showdown, with Miami making up for their 43-0 loss to New England in Miami earlier this season.

Final Score

Dolphins 27 - Patriots 24

Recap

The Patriots received the opening kick of the second half. They did not do much with the possession, however, starting the drive with a Rex Burkhead run for six yards, then a one-yard loss. Tom Brady looked toward Mohamed Sanu on 3rd-and-5, with Eric Rowe, who recorded a pick-six in the first half, immediately pulling down the receiver for a three-yard gain. New England punted after the three-and-out drive.

Ryan Fitzpatrick opened Miami’s drive with a 10-yard pass to Parker on a slant. Patrick Laird then ran for three yards, followed by a Fitzpatrick pass to Isaiah Ford for five yards. Fitzpatrick then connected with Albert Wilson for 24 yards, with the receiver upset he was not able to turn up field for more yardage. Wilson then threw a pass to Laird, picking up 20 yards, followed by a Fitzpatrick incomplete pass. After Miami was called for too many men on the field, they backed up to a 2nd-and-15 at the Patriots’ 26. Fitzpatrick then scrambled for 10 yards, threw to Mike Gesicki for 14 yards, then scrambled for the two-yard touchdown. Dolphins 17-10.

New England’s offense came back out, looking to answer. They started with an incomplete pass before Brady found James White for a 12-yard gain. Then Sony Michel ran up the middle for four yards. Brady was then incomplete on the next pass before connecting with Sanu for a 12-yard gain. Michel then ran for eight yards, then three yards, before Brady floated a pass to the flat for eligible-linebacker/fullback Elandon Roberts for a 38-yard touchdown. Tied 17-17.

Fitzpatrick scrambled for two yards on the opening pay of the drive, with a 15-yard penalty for a horsecollar tackle added. Fitzpatrick then found Laird for 11 yards, then the running back picked up one yard. Fitzpatrick looked toward Isaiah Ford on 2nd-and-9, picking up 11 yards, then Samaje Perine picked up three yards. After an incomplete pass on 2nd down, Fitzpatrick was sacked for a six-yard loss, leading to a Miami punt (following a delay of game penalty to back up Miami five-yards and provide a little more space for Matt Haack’s punt).

New England started the drive with Michel running up the middle for seven yards, with the clock ending the third quarter. Michel then picked up nine yards, setting up 1st-and-10 at the New England 26. Michel picked up another four yards before Trent Harris sacked Brady for a four-yard loss. On 3rd-and-10, New England appeared to convert for the first down on a 15-yard gain on a screen pass, but an illegal shift penalty backed them up into a 3rd-and-15 attempt. Brady connected with Harry for seven yards, leading to a punt - with the kick going just 35 yards.

Miami started at their own 37 after the short punt, with Laird picking up two yards on the opening play of the drive. Fitzpatrick then found Ford for a 15-yard gain on a seven-yard pass with Ford shaking off the initial tackle and getting up field. After an incomplete pass, Miami went back to Fitzpatrick, who threw a slant to a wide open Parker, who ran to complete the 23-yard gain. Wilson then attempted his second pass of the game, looking deep for Ford but it fell incomplete before a defensive pass interference moved Miami to the New England 19-yard line. Fitzpatrick threw three passes on the next three plays, with two incompletions around a five-yard pass to Ford. The Dolphins settled for the 32-yard Jason Sanders field goal. Dolphins 20-17.

New England started at their own 40-yard line after a 38-yard kickoff return. Brady threw to White for a eight-yard gain, then Burkhead picked up 14 yards. Michel picked up another two yards before Brady threw to Ben Watson for four yards. On 3rd-and-7, Brady was given all day to wait for someone to get open, leading to a 22-yard gain on the pass to Sanu. On 1st-and-Goal from the Miami 10, Michel ran for two yards. Brady looked to Harry in the back of the endzone on 2nd down, but the receiver only got one foot down. On 3rd-and-Goal, New England was called for a false start, backing up the Patriots to the Miami 13-yard line. On the next 3rd-and-Goal attempt, Brady threw a screen to White, who weaved through the Miami defense and scored untouched. Walt Aikens was injured on the play as his knees were chopped under him to clear the way for White. Patriots 24-20.

With 3:53 to play, the Dolphins started at their own 25-yard line. Fitzpatrick threw the ball into the ground at Laird’s feet to avoid a sack on first down, then found Wilson - who bobbled the ball before coming up with the catch - for 10 yards. Fitzpatrick looked for Mike Gesicki deep on 1st-and-10, but the ball fell incomplete. He then looked toward Gesicki again, picking up nine yards, before finding forward for five yards and the first down. Fitzpatrick could not handle the shotgun snap on the next play, but managed to jump onto the loose ball and keep possession for Miami as the clock moved to the 2-minute warning. Fitzpatrick went to Parker on the next two plays, picking up 24 yards and five yards on the plays. He then threw away the ball to avoid the sack, leading to a 3rd-and-5 with Fitzpatrick finding Wilson for seven yards. Fitzpatrick went back to Parker for eight yards before he went out of bounds, stopping the clock with 35 seconds remaining. Fitzpatrick then threw to Ford across the middle for a four-yard gain on 2nd-and-2, with the timeout stopping the clock with 29 seconds remaining. Fitzpatrick then looked down the seam to find Gesicki for the 5-yard touchdown and the lead with 24 seconds remaining. Dolphins 27-24.

The Patriots started with the ball at their own 25, with Brady throwing incomplete on first down. He then found Julien Edelman for a 12-yard gain. After their first timeout, Brady was again incomplete looking for Philip Dorsett with Nate Brooks breaking up the pass. Brady again threw incomplete on 2nd-and-10. With two seconds remaining, the Patriots tried to lateral the ball multiple times, but ultimately the Dolphins recovered the ball on a lateral and won the game.

Immediate Reactions

The Dolphins are still standing tall against the Patriots. This does not feel like New England’s best performance, but everything they are doing, Miami is keeping with them.

Parker reached the 100-yard mark for the second-straight game, the first time since 2016 a Dolphins receiver has done that (Jarvis Landry). It also pushes him over 1,100 yards on the season.

Wow that was way more stressful at the end than it should have been. A loss would not have been bad - but man it feels good to beat the Patriots in Foxboro.