The Miami Dolphins have now lost six straight games to the Buffalo Bills, adding a seasoning blend to the wound.
Former Florida Atlantic Owls running back, South Florida native back Devin Singletary started the homecoming party rushing for 82 yards and a touchdown for the Bills. Josh Allen threw two touchdown passes; he was 17 of 33 passes for 179 yards for the Bills. Zach Moss ran for two scores, all part of a 35-0 win on Sunday.
It was the Bills Largest shutout win versus the Dolphins since November 6, 1966.
The storyline of the game is Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa left the game early with a rib injury.
It was the second-worst shutout loss by the Dolphins at home, the worst? A 43-0 rout to New England in 2019.
“We did not do well enough in any area today,” Dolphins head coach Brian Flores said. “We need to regroup, make the corrections, do better.”
Tagovailoa was taken out of the game on a failed fourth-down conversion by Buffalo’s A.J. Epenesa on a sack on the second offensive series for the Dolphins.
Jacoby Brissett became QB1, completing 24 of 40 passes for 169 yards.
Allen went over the 10,000-yard passing mark for his career, the sixth player to do so for the Bills. He entered the game 23 yards shy.
Xavien Howard had his first interception of the season. Miami’s defense has registered at least one turnover in 24 consecutive games, the longest active streak in the NFL.
For the Dolphins, the game was surprising and disappointing. Here is a perspective. It is the second game of the season; they are 1-1 and tied first. It is a rib injury for Tagovailoa. It is not a long-term injury. In the worst-case scenario, he will miss only a couple of games.
Brissett is a reliable backup quarterback; he added in his postgame press conference that he does not like to be considered a backup but instead considers himself a starter. Nonetheless, Tagovailoa was drafted to be a winning starting quarterback.
Dolphins committed three turnovers on offense, missed opportunities, especially when the Dolphins were in this game through the first half of the game. The chances were lost with turnovers.
The Dolphins’ defense was very reliable through three quarters. When the game became out of reach, they became sloppy. The Bills’ defensive front made the Dolphins’ offensive line look like Swiss cheese giving up a season-high six sacks.
Defensive players were a highlight for Miami. Howard, with another interception, Jerome Baker was all over the field. Emmanuel Ogbah was consistently pressuring Allen. The defense played well enough to keep the dolphins in the game, especially with all the turnovers.
A couple of things come to mind when Tagovailoa was carted to the locker room; questions about his durability and will the Dolphins trade now for Deshaun Watson? The NFL trade deadline is November 2.
Tua has dealt with injuries at college, playing at Alabama, and is presently in the NFL. He is not the tallest quarterback; moreover, again, the grey cloud of Watson is over his head. He was sacked three times before taking the hit that injured his ribs. The offensive line did not have a stellar day, to put it mildly.
Watson is a huge gamble. One until he is not prosecuted and indicted for severe allegations of 22 civil complaints.
Watson is available and sitting on the sidelines for the Houston Texans. The first-round draft picks will be what the Dolphins need to give up for Watson. The legal issues are there; however, are they will be manageable? Dolphins get a franchise quarterback in return. At the moment, he is not suspended, he has not been fined, and he is not on the commissioner’s exempt list.
Nothing against Tua; the Dolphins have a chance to get a franchise quarterback. The risk is high since so many questions are up in the air. But they have a talented defense, young talented coaching staff; the chance to get a franchise quarterback is now.
The Texans are expected to keep Watson on the inactive list. Starting quarterback Tyrod Taylor was hurt in the loss to the Cleveland Browns with a hamstring injury. However, I would be shocked if Watson steps on the field for the Texans again. Miami is Watson’s preferred destination.
Miami as a safety net pending all of them off the field legal ramifications involving Watson can place contingencies that can affect what draft picks the Dolphins to give up if he is unable to play. The picks can be conditional based on how many games he plays and if he is available to play furthermore how long. When it comes down to the money the Dolphins are protected, an NFL team is not obligated to pay out their contract or their guarantees if a player is suspended. Dolphins are protected on the assurance they need a contingency to cover them with draft picks.
The beat goes on.
It does not get easier. The Dolphins go on their most extended road trip when they visit the Las Vegas Raiders.
The Bills host the Washington Redskins.