Nothing was going to keep
Gibson lived up to his reputation as a tough-as-nails wide receiver with the first half coming to a close and his Miami Dolphins trailing by 10 points. One play after making a nifty 16-yard diving reception on the left sideline that was upheld on instant replay, the fifth-year player out of Washington State came open underneath on a crossing route for a 13-yard touchdown catch. Gibson left his feet near the goal line and was hit twice in the air, spinning his way into the end zone with 21 seconds left in the half to make it a 17-14 ballgame.
“I had a jerk route and was one-on-one with the linebacker and it was me and a couple of defenders and I didn’t want anyone else to stop me,” said Gibson, who tied a career-high with two touchdown receptions in Miami’s 23-21 loss at Sun Life Stadium. “I wanted to land on my feet but once I figured I was in the end zone I figured there was no point.”
Just the fact that Gibson was willing to go across the middle at that point in the game was encouraging. Back in the first quarter on the Dolphins’ second possession, he was open over the middle in the red zone but was hit hard by Bills cornerback Nickell Robey as the ball arrived and could not hold on. He left the field looking a little woozy.
But not only did Gibson return to score that touchdown right before intermission, he gave Miami its first lead with 6:46 left in the third quarter on a 4-yard scoring reception in the back of the end zone. He ended up celebrating by leaping over a protective barrier separating a mob of fans from the field and suddenly found himself in the middle of the mob with the ball.
“It was just a little excitement,” Gibson said. “One lady really wanted to be on camera with me and I think she had her time to shine.”
Head Coach Joe Philbin has been impressed with Gibson’s production since the first preseason game and was not at all surprised by his performance against the Bills.
“He’s been a dependable receiver throughout the course of the season,” Philbin said. “He came up with some big plays today.”
Tannehill also has come to rely on Gibson as the season has progressed while he continues to develop chemistry with
“He did a great job,” Tannehill said. “On the first one he had a little jerk route in the middle, he beat the Mike linebacker and then made a heck of a play getting into the end zone. I actually looked up and saw it on the Jumbotron as I was on the ground and it was pretty fun to watch.”
Unfortunately, Gibson’s stellar performance did not come in a win and he kept that aspect in perspective, acknowledging what went well for him and the offense while also realizing what needs to be fixed. The first pass that was his thrown his direction on the opening drive was picked off in the flat by Robey and returned 19 yards for a touchdown to quickly put the Bills ahead.
“If you look at the turnovers that’s probably where the game was won and lost,” Gibson said. “We give them the ball in certain situations there’s no doubt about it they’re going to put up points. We’ve got to do a better job and that’s something we emphasize and I think as a whole we can do better. We’ve just got to continue to work on it and make sure it’s something that we don’t do and can help us win games.”
Welcome back Dimitri
Patterson came off of the left corner on a blitz untouched and surprised Lewis after he faked a handoff, smothering him at the 3 to set up a 3rd-and-14. It was the type of play he enjoys executing.
“I got really excited. I had been looking at their snap count all week, but you never know when you’re going to blitz,” said Patterson, who still leads the team with those two interceptions. “I was just happy to put a helmet on, honestly, and to move around. I still really didn’t know where I was from a game speed standpoint but I was able to go out there, cover some guys and I felt really good. I’m just happy that I came out of that game healthy and I’m excited about where I’m at physically and I’m ready to move forward and put that injury behind me.
The last time Gibson caught two touchdown passes in a game was on November 18th, 2012 against the New York Jets. … Reggie Bush was the last Dolphin to do it against Buffalo on December 23rd, 2012. … Marty Booker was the last receiver to catch two touchdown passes in a game back on November 23rd in 2006 at Detroit … Tannehill threw a career-high three touchdown passes and became the first Dolphin quarterback to throw three touchdown passes in a game since
“Everybody in the huddle was on the same page, knowing this was for the win and we were in position to win the football game. They hadn’t made a play on our defense pretty much all day. They had been stopping them the whole day so our offense just has to play better. We have to. Our defense played outstanding today and those touchdowns were pretty much on the offense. We gave them those points so we can’t do that.” – wide receiver Mike Wallace on the mindset at the start of the second-to-last drive before the fumble
Miami goes back on the road to face the New England Patriots in Gillette Stadium next Sunday at 1 p.m.