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Dolphins Stay Perfect On Halloween With 22-20 OT Win

Posted Oct 31, 2013

Cam Wake’s third sack goes for game-winning safety.



On a night when one of the greatest defensive players in Miami Dolphin history was inducted into the Dolphins Honor Roll, this era’s best defensive player secured a crucial win over the Cincinnati Bengals.

Defensive end Cameron Wake’s sack of Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton with 6:38 left in overtime resulted in a game-winning safety and a 22-20 victory. It was Wake’s third sack of the game and his first career safety and it also put an end to Miami’s four-game losing streak, evening the team’s record at 4-4 and improving the Dolphins’ record on Halloween to 6-0.

“It feels good. Most of you who have been around me know the last few weeks maybe have been a little frustrating for me personally,” said Wake, who had been battling a knee injury suffered in the home opener against Atlanta. “But just doing everything I can to get back and today to leave it all on the field, it was a good one. (That first safety) couldn’t come at a better time.”

How fitting it was that a defense that forced four turnovers was responsible for the biggest play, and how fitting it was that it came after former Dolphins middle linebacker John Offerdahl had his name added to the ring around Sun Life Stadium.

Wake’s first sack of the game also was a strip of Dalton that he recovered and his defensive teammates came up with three interceptions Cornerback Brent Grimes’ 94-yard interception return for a touchdown in the third quarter gave Miami a 17-3 lead.

“We were in the red zone and we were in zero coverage,” Grimes said. “I just made a play on the ball. He ran an out, I broke on it, played what I saw, just came up and made a play on the ball and ran. That’s pretty much it. It feels real good but I don’t feel good right now. I’ve never been this tired, cramps in both calves and it was just a hard-fought game. … That shows a lot of character for our defense and we just continued to fight and pulled out a win when we had to. We needed this win big time.”

Running back Lamar Miller had his first career 100-yard rushing game, finishing with 105 yards and quarterback Ryan Tannehill had a 1-yard touchdown run as the Bengals saw their four-game winning streak come to an end. He averaged 6.6 yards per carry and was part of a ground game that amassed a season-high 157 yards.

Tannehill had some success through the air, completing 20-of-28 passes for 208 yards and a 92.6 passer rating. He completed a 40-yarder to Mike Wallace, who led the team with six catches for 82 yards, and the two generated a 38-yard pass interference penalty in overtime on the offense’s second possession that flipped the field.

Even though they didn’t get points out of the drive, the Dolphins ended up pinning Dalton and the Bengals at their own 8, setting up the Wake sack and safety.

“I was a little bit upset. I really wanted to score a touchdown,” Wallace said. “I never scored in overtime before so I selfishly wanted to score a touchdown right there, but it was a big play for our team. Without that I don’t think we would have gotten that safety.”

And the fact that it was Wake who made the play put a smile on everyone’s face.

“It’s always great when Cam is out there balling,” said middle linebacker Dannell Ellerbe, who had one of the three interceptions. “It’s great to have him out there period. You can’t make big plays like that every game, but it’s much sweeter when it’s a big game like this.”

Philbin prepared the team for a short week after a tough loss at New England and he couldn’t be prouder of how his players responded.

“When you sign up for an NFL season, it’s a long season, and you never like losing four games in a row,” he said. “When you have an excellent football team that’s coming into town, it was time for us to step up. I told the guys, we’ve got to make a decision about where we’re going to be. I felt they answered it pretty well tonight.”

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