The Dolphin Report

By Ron Poltorack

REGGIE DROPS BALL, THEN DROPS BILLS

The Bills turned a Reggie Bush fumble into a 7-0 first quarter lead.  But it’s how you finish that really counts and Reggie Bush then went on a tear and rushed for a career high 203 yards en route to his third consecutive 100-yard games as the Fins went on to defeat the Bills on a snowy Sunday in Buffalo.  For the day Bush average 8.1 yards per carry, an average that was skewed somewhat by his 76-yard touchdown run in the fourth quarter, the second longest TD run in team history.  He now has 973 rushing yards for the season and should be able to reach his first 1,000-yard season before he breaks a sweat against the Patriots next week. 

With their win over Buffalo on Sunday the Fins have climbed out of the Division cellar by virtue of a head-to-head tie breaker over the Bills.  Although the Fins started this season by losing their first 7 games, the Bills have now lost their last 7.  Both teams may be 5-9 on the season, but there is no doubt which team is in a better place at this juncture of the season.  The reality, of course, is that neither team is going anywhere this year. 

Although Matt Moore only completed 10 of 20 attempts (50%), he managed to have a 122.3 QB Rating for the day thanks to his 21.7-yard average per completion and his 2 TDs (without any INTs).  He turned the ball over once on a fumble (as did Brandon Marshall). 

The defense played take-away against the Bills, intercepting Ryan Fitzpatrick 3 times.  Vontae Davis had 2 of the INTs while Rashad Jones had the other.  These helped to counteract the Dolphins’ fumbling tendency.   Although the defense held the Bills without a third down conversation (0-11 on Sunday) for the second time this season (0-23 overall), they managed to surrender 21 first downs on Sunday when it wasn’t third down.  The defense gave up 113 rushing yards and 316 passing yards so all in all it was not one of their better performances.  Still, it was enough as the Fins held on to win 30-23. 

Brandon Marshall dropped 2 balls in the end zone, but later made amends by catching a beautifully thrown over-the-shoulder pass for a 65-yard TD.   That reception took him over the 1,000-yard plateau for the second time in as many seasons with Miami.  While he has a knack getting the yardage, it would be appreciated if he would find a way to treat his seeming allergy to footballs reaching his hands in the end zone.  What separates Marshall from the all-time NFL great receivers is that too many passes thrown in his direction end up on the turf. 

But this day clearly belonged to Reggie Bush.  There aren’t too many running backs capable of eclipsing 200 yards in a game.  Reggie now belongs in that elite club.  And he picked a great time to do it as it pretty much wrapped up what will become his first 1,000 yard season.  Although he dropped the ball early in the game, Reggie spent the rest of day dropping the Bills.

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