Defense Drives Dolphins To 16-12 Win In Indianapolis

The Dolphins rode a tremendous defensive effort to their second consecutive victory.

The defense came up with three interceptions and then stopped Indianapolis’ late comeback attempt to produce a 16-12 victory at Lucas Oil Stadium on Sunday. The victory followed the Dolphins’ victory against the New York Jets at Hard Rock Stadium.

The Dolphins clinched the victory when they stopped Indianapolis on downs after the Colts reached the Miami 15-yard line. After three incompletions, quarterback Brian Hoyer completed a pass to tight end Eric Ebron, but was tackled at the 8-yard line, 2 yards short of the first down.

Safeties Steven Parker and Bobby McCain and cornerback Nik Needham all came up with interceptions for the Dolphins, who got an 11-yard touchdown scramble by quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick and three field goals by Jason Sanders.

The Dolphins took a 13-12 lead with 5:45 left in the fourth quarter on Sanders’ 48-yard field goal. The kick capped a 12-play drive that featured a 21-yard completion from Fitzpatrick to Parker.

It ended a run of 12 consecutive points for the Colts, who took the lead for the first time on the previous drive on a 1-yard touchdown pass from Hoyer to tight end Jack Doyle. Veteran kicker Adam Viniatieri missed the extra-point attempt, however, leaving Indy only up by two, 12-10.

The Dolphins increased the lead to 16-12 after their third interception of the game, the one by Needham.

It set up Sanders’ second 48-yard field goal in a 3-minute span.

Along with the interceptions, linebacker Jerome Baker had a sack, and Charles Harris had an impressive tackle for loss.

The Dolphins’ effort on defense began the first time that group was on the field, as Parker came up with a spectacular interception in the end zone.

On a second-and-goal from the 9, Hoyer appeared to connect with Ebron, but Parker stole the ball away from him as both players were falling to the ground.

The initial ruling was an interception and the call stood after review.

The Dolphins then drove 51 yards to take a 3-0 lead on Sanders’ 47-yard field goal. The big play in the drive was a 19-yard completion from Fitzpatrick to Parker.

The Dolphins missed a great opportunity to add to their lead when they went for the touchdown on fourth-and-goal from the 3-yards line on the second play of the second quarter.

Fitzpatrick’s swing pass to rookie running back Myles Gaskin, making his NFL regular season debut, was tipped at the line and the delay allowed the Indianapolis defense to get to Gaskin before he had a chance to get into the end zone after turning upfield and he was stopped for no gain.

The Colts then drove to the Dolphins 28-yard line, but the defense again came up with a big play when Baker shot through a hole in the middle of the line of scrimmage and dropped Hoyer for a 9-yard loss that became 13 yards after Hoyer lost the ball and running back Marlon Mack recovered the fumble.

The next big play on defense was McCain’s interception, which came on a deep pass intended for Ebron. Safety Eric Rowe had tight coverage on Ebron and McCain got low to make the pick and he got up to produce an impressive 32-yard return to the Colts 12-yard line down the left sideline.

On third-and-9 from the 11, Fitzpatrick took off and raced into the right side of the end zone to make it 10-0 after the extra point.

The Dolphins then made the plays down the stretch to make it two in a row. They’ll try to make it three in a row when they face the Buffalo Bills at Hard Rock Stadium next Sunday.

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