Week 9 for the Miami Dolphins represented a major hurdle amid rumors of locker room turmoil and fans’ distaste for the Philbin regime grows. Everything added up to a Dolphins loss against the red-hot Cincinnati Bengals, led by quarterback Andy Dalton, who threw for 338 yards on 32 completions and whopping 53 attempts. However, the Dolphins defense forced 3 interceptions to halt the loaded Bengals offense, and stopped Dalton from setting a franchise record of consecutive 300+ yard games and 3tds.
Offensively, quarterback Ryan Tannehill had a great rebound from his week 8 inconsistent performance vs New England. In total, Tannehill went 20 of 28 with 208 yards and a 92.6 QBR. He showed the ability to look through progressions and deliver perfectly placed balls to WRs Mike Wallace (6 catches, 82 yards) and Brian Hartline (3 catches, 39 yards). Running back Lamar Miller broke 100 yards on only 16 carries, with a 6.6 yards per carry average, his most dominating performance this season. He fumbled on his biggest gain, but the Dolphins were able to overcome the mistake. The offensive line was very impressive, allowing the running backs to go for a season-high total in rushing yards.
On Defense, the Dolphins were plagued with poor tackling against Bengals stud RB Gio Bernard, who had 79 yards and 2 tds on 9 carries, and a highlight reel-worthy 35 yard score. Star WR AJ Green had 11 catches and 128 yards but Dolphins CB Brent Grimes performed well, considering his size disadvantage. Grimes made a beautiful 94 yard interception return for touchdown that saved Miami from losing the lead in the third quarter. DE Cam Wake continues to show his dominance by totaling 3 sacks, further showing he is a top 3 end in the NFL, and probably the top strong-side end.
The win wasn’t flawless; kicker Caleb Sturgis missed another chip shot field goal, LG Ritchie Incognito was injured, OLB Philip Wheeler continued to miss too many open-field tackles, but the Dolphins overcame some tough penalties against them and ended a devastating losing streak. Now, they have 9 days to prepare for Tampa Bay, who is a good matchup for them.
Dolphins 22, Bengals 20