Tua Tagovailoa is undefeated against Bill Belichick in his career, entering week eight.
Tagovailoa remained undefeated against the future Hall of Fame head coach.
Tagovailoa moved to 6-0 in his career against Belichick, throwing for 324 yards, three touchdowns, and an interception in the Dolphins’ 31-17 win over the New England Patriots.
Dolphins are 6-2 for the first time since 2001.
“It’s tough to sweep any team in your division. Again, a Bill Belichick-coached team too tough to beat anytime, anyplace, anywhere, so I’m proud of those guys,” Tagovailoa said. “Right now, we’re just going to enjoy this victory, and we’ll watch the film, learn from what we can get better at, and then we’ll focus on our next opponent.”
After a slate of late afternoon results, the Dolphins are tied for the best record in the AFC with the Kansas City Chiefs, Jacksonville Jaguars, and Baltimore Ravens.
Patriots did not allow a 100-yard receiver all season. Jaylen Waddle had seven catches for 121 yards and a touchdown, and Tyreek Hill had eight receptions for 112 yards and a score, becoming the first player in the Super Bowl era to top 1,000 receiving yards through eight games.
“I’ve been calling my shot since I came in the league. Many people doubted me, saying I couldn’t do this and do that, but it’s all about believing in yourself. That’s the one thing my mom and dad always taught me,” Hill said. “Here I am today. I’m very blessed, very thankful to be in this position, and no greater day to do it. I have my kids here today, so no greater day to do it.”
Hill, limited by a hip injury this week giving Dolphins fans a scare, has made clear his goal to surpass 2,000 receiving yards, and he’s more than halfway there at 1,014.
Miami is now 16-2 in its past 18 home games. The last time the Dolphins won 16 of 18 home games was from Oct. 30, 1983 to Jan. 4, 1986, when they went 23-2 at the Orange Bowl.
“I could care less about what their record is. That is a tough team to go against. They made their plays. They made it very difficult,” Dolphins head coach Mike McDaniel said. “But 100 percent our guys weren’t looking at anything but today, which is why we were able to be victorious because if we would have been half-hearted in anything we did, we would have lost that game for sure.”
The Dolphins’ rushing game was sluggish, with only 78 yards on the ground.
The big moment for Miami was the debut of Jalen Ramsey in a Dolphins uniform. Ramsey intercepted Mac Jones on a pass intended for Kendrick Bourne and returned it 49 yards in the second quarter. He missed preseason and the first seven games of the season after having surgery in July to repair a torn meniscus in his left knee.
“None of this would have been possible without Dr. Uribe fixing my knee. They might have to do a case study on whatever he did to help it heal so quickly. The training staff, they did an amazing job. I had good days. I had bad days and everything in between,” Ramsey said. “And the training staff, they never babied me. They pushed me. They were super smart with me, even when I didn’t want to be smart. Weight room staff, everybody, they really built in my mind like a perfect plan, and we just stuck to it. I just had to listen to them.”
The Dolphins turned the ball over twice, and the Patriots scored both times.
Jones was subpar at quarterback for the Patriots (2-6), throwing for 161 yards on 19-of-29 passing with two touchdowns and one interception.
“We all need to play better,” Patriots head coach Bill Belichick said. “We all just need to coach and play better.”
Patriots finished with 218 yards of total offense. Jones was sacked three times.
The Dolphins have swept the Patriots on the season.
Hill has nine games now to reach 2,000 receiving yards. He will achieve the goal he set for himself at the start of the season. As long as this offense is healthy, the Dolphins offense is impossible to stop. I will not be shocked if he gets there by the 16th game of the year.
Tagovailoa has been remarkably resilient this season in games where he made a mistake. He shrugs it off. The Dolphins have poise in Tua. He is a leader, and there is a constant feeling that if this team is down on the scoreboard, they can rally back with this offense.
The Patriots are not as dominant as in the past. I expect Belichick to coach the Patriots as long as he wants. Tom Brady is not walking through that door, but you can’t question the caliber of coach Belichick.
The trade deadline is Tuesday, Halloween. Dolphins general manager Chris Grier should seek help on the offensive line for depth. Moreover, add help on the defensive line.
Patriots: Host Washington next Sunday.
The Dolphins take a plane to Munich, Germany, tomorrow night to play the Kansas City Chiefs in Frankfurt, Germany.