The Miami Dolphins had their first regular season game against the New England Patriots on Sunday afternoon. The Dolphins came out of this game with a narrow victory, as the score was 17-16. This was a great road victory early in the season, especially since this game was a divisional game. They are now one game up on the Buffalo Bills, who are favored to win the division, but they suffered a tough loss to the Steelers at home. This article will recap the Miami Dolphins victory over the New England Patriots.
The Dolphins Offense
Tua Tagovailoa and the offense started the season with an opening drive that ended in a touchdown. The Dolphins quarterback ran three yards to the end zone to put the Dolphins in the lead. Tagovailoa looked good a lot of the game. His arm looked strong and he put a lot of zip on his passes. Although this was the case, there were a lot of missed opportunities because of dropped passes. His most reliable receivers in this game were the standout rookie receiver Jaylen Waddle and DeVante Parker. The second-year quarterback out of Alabama ended the day going 16/27 for 202 passing yards. He also had one touchdown and an interception.
Jaylen Waddle looked good from the very beginning of this game. He caught a 17-yard pass to get the Dolphins going on their first drive of the season that ended in a touchdown. He also caught a short 3-yard touchdown pass from Tagovailoa at the beginning of the thirds quarter to put the Dolphins up 17-10.
DeVante Parker also had a great game. He caught a couple of the longer passes of the day from Tagovailoa. He looked quick and seemed to create a lot of space from the defender. Parker had four receptions for 81 yards.
Mike Gesicki, who was one of the standouts tight ends from the 2020 regular season and the preseason had a quiet day. He had a couple of targets but did not catch any of them. Although he had a non-productive game, he has the skill and the ability to make a lot of big plays for the Dolphins throughout the year.
The Dolphins running backs also had a pretty quiet day at the office. Myles Gaskin was the leading rusher with 49 yards. He got a couple of good runs in, with his longest being for 15 yards. He also played a role in the passing game. Gaskin’s got a couple of passes out in the flat and scurried for some good chunk yardage. The rest of the running backs rushed for fewer than 20 yards. Salvon Ahmed did get involved in the passing game as he had two receptions for 24 yards.
The Dolphins Defense
The Dolphins’ defense did end up getting a good amount of pressure on the young rookie Mac Jones. Although the pressure was good they did not manage to get to the rookie quarterback. The Dolphins defense did however force two fumbles in this game. One was recovered by Xavien Howard and Zach Sieler recovered the other fumble. The Patriots’ offense did manage to run quite a bit on the Dolphins’ defense. Patriots running back Damien Harris rushed for 100 yards against the Miami defense. The Dolphins did however manage to stop the Patriots a lot in Miami territory. This was a bright spot as it shows when the Dolphins’ defense does break a little they can be resilient and keep the damage to a field goal.
The top defensive performer was Linebacker Jerome Baker as he had 12 total tackles. He looked strong and showed some speed going through the middle of that Patriots offensive line. Overall the Dolphins had a pretty decent showing. It was enough to give them a win, but a lot of stuff needs to be cleaned up such as drop passes and getting the running game going a little more. The defense also has to be a little better at stopping the run. The Dolphins play the Bills next Sunday in Miami. We will see what they can do against a great Buffalo team.