Miami Dolphins
Miami Dolphins wide receiver Jaylen Waddle (17) jumps on wide receiver River Cracraft (85) Craft scored a touchdown after during the first half of an NFL football game against the Buffalo Bills, Sunday, Sept. 25, 2022, in Miami Gardens, Fla. (AP Photo/Rebecca Blackwell)

Miami Dolphins Take AFC East Following A Big Win Over Buffalo Bills

The Miami Dolphins overcame the Buffalo Bills 21-19 following a fiery fourth-quarter comeback. The Dolphins took down the reigning AFC East champions to improve to 3-0 on the season while ending a seven-game losing streak to the Bills. Miami currently sits No. 1 in the AFC East and they are the only undefeated team in the conference.

Fire in the Fourth

The final quarter of the game was nothing short of a thriller. The Bills entered the final period with a three-point advantage leading 17-14. Buffalo opened the fourth with a missed 38-yard field goal attempt, following an incomplete pass and 5-yard pass to Knox on a 3rd-and-nine.

The Dolphins began to take over on their next possession. Miami quarterback Tua Tagovailoa connected with wide receiver Jaylen Waddle for 32 yards. Tagovailoa again found Waddle at the seven-yard line for a 45-yard gain. The Dolphins got the 1st-and-goal from the 3-yard line following an unnecessary roughness penalty on Buffalo. Miami running back Chase Edmonds ran in his second touchdown of the game for the Dolphins who took the lead for the first time in the game.

With Miami out in front 21-17, the Bills made their way down the field reaching the Miami one-yard line. Buffalo’s possession resulted in a turnover on downs following two incomplete passes on third and fourth downs.

The Butt Punt

Here’s where the butt punt happens. After a loss of one, a QB sneak for no gain, and an incomplete pass, Dolphins punter Thomas Morstead punted the ball into receiver Trent Sherfield’s own end zone. The play resulted in a safety that brought the score to 21-19

With the Dolphins’ lead cut to two, the Bills got the ball back with a minute and a half remaining in the game. Buffalo’s offense started at their own 23-yard line. Bills quarterback Josh Allen took to the field eager to get his team in field goal range. With one incomplete pass after another, a holding penalty on Buffalo backed them up to their own 47-yard line. Before Allen could execute a play, the clock ticked down to zero. Just like that, the Dolphins conquered the Super Bowl contenders, marking their second victory over a favored opponent.

Other Plays of the Game

The Bills scored on the opening drive of the game for an eighth consecutive time. In doing so, they are tied for the longest streak in the NFL since 1983. Buffalo opened the game with a 10-play, 75-yard drive that was capped by a 2-yard TD on a pass from Allen to running back Devin Singletary.

A sack and fumble of Allen was recovered by Miami linebacker Melvin Ingram at Buffalo’s 6-yard-line. Then, Edmonds ran in the touchdown for the Dolphins. With three minutes remaining in the first quarter, the game was tied 7-7.

Following a 75-yard drive early in the second quarter, Allen connected with wide receiver Isaiah McKenzie for an 8-yard TD that put the Bills in front 14-7.

The Dolphins tied the game at 14-14 following a nine-play, 83-yard drive that ended in an 11-yard TD pass from Tagovailoa to wide receiver River Cracraft.

At the end of the first half, the Bills planned to spike the ball once more for a field goal attempt. However, a bad snap caused Allen to look to Diggs for nine yards. Instead, the clock ran out with both teams tied at the half.

A 20-play, 87-yard drive came up short on Miami’s 11-yard line forcing Buffalo to settle for a 30-yard field goal by kicker Tyler Bass. With 3:40 remaining in the third, the Bills led 17-14.

Injury Report

Miami Dolphins
Miami Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa (1) is assisted off the field during the first half of an NFL football game against the Buffalo Bills, Sunday, Sept. 25, 2022, in Miami Gardens. (AP Photo/Rebecca Blackwell)

During the final minutes of the first half, Tagovailoa was shoved to the ground on a late hit by  Buffalo linebacker Matt Milano. Milano was flagged for roughing the passer. Tagovailoa was very unsteady and disoriented following the play and went straight to the locker room. Teddy Bridgewater took to the field in his place. Tagovailoa returned to start the second half.

Sunday’s contest was full of injuries for the Bills. Bills receiver Jake Kumerow left late in the first quarter with a left ankle injury that kept him out for the remainder of the game. Tight end Dawson Knox took a big hit in the third quarter that snapped his head back but later returned. Bills guard Ryan Bates was evaluated after suffering a head injury in the third. Buffalo Center Greg Van Roten and receiver Stefon Diggs also both left the game in the fourth.

Furthermore, the South Florida heat was too much to handle for the Bills. A couple of Buffalo players were listed with heat illness: McKenzie and offensive tackle Spencer Brown.

Stars of The Game

However, the Miami heat was no problem for Allen, who recorded an impressive 42-63 for 400 yards and two touchdowns, with eight rushes for 47 yards.

Other Bills standouts include McKenzie, who recorded 76 yards and a TD on seven catches, and Singletary who recorded 78 yards receiving and one TD on nine catches, as well as 13 yards rushing.

For Miami, Waddle completed 102 yards receiving on four catches, while Tagovailoa completed 186 yards and one TD on 13 of 18 passing.

In Week 4, the Dolphins travel to Cincinnati to play the Bengals and the Bills pay a visit to the Ravens in Baltimore.

About Ellie Shreve

Ellie is a third-year sports and media journalism major at the University of Florida.

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