Dolphins Offense Struggles In Week 2 Loss To Patriots

The Dolphins just couldn’t find any answers on offense Sunday.

The defense held the New England Patriots offense in check for a good part of the afternoon, but that wasn’t enough to prevent a 43-0 loss at Hard Rock Stadium.

New England scored two touchdowns on pick-sixes in the fourth quarter — one of 54 yards by cornerback Stephon Gilmore and the other of 69 yards by linebacker Jamie Collins — and Tom Brady threw a TD pass to running back James White with 2:10 left in the fourth quarter.

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Brady passed for two touchdowns and ran for another for New England, which won in Miami for only the second time in seven trips. Sony Michel had a rushing touchdown and Antonio Brown caught a touchdown pass in his first game with New England.

The Dolphins were shut out in Miami for the first time since 2010 when they suffered a 16-0 loss against the Chicago Bears in a Thursday night game. The Dolphins had one final chance to avoid the shutout on the final play of the game after calling a timeout with 1 second left on a first-and-goal at the 8-yard line, but Josh Rosen’s pass was tipped and intercepted.

Defensive lineman John Jenkins and linebacker Vince Biegel each got their first sacks in a Dolphins uniform. The Dolphins also got their first takeaway of the season when Minkah Fitzpatrick forced and recovered a fumble, though it did come with the outcome no longer in doubt.

An indication of the Dolphins’ offensive struggles is the fact they didn’t drive past the New England 40-yard line until the fourth quarter — and that was followed immediately by Collins’ pick-six, which came after running back Kalen Ballage bobbled Fitzpatrick’s pass.

The frustration on offense continued after Rosen replaced Fitzpatrick at quarterback when Jakeem Grant dropped a perfectly thrown bomb at the New England 15-yard line and Preston Williams shortly thereafter also dropped a long pass.

The Dolphins did not take a snap inside the New England 35-yard line until 10 seconds remained in the game.

The Dolphins managed only 51 total yards and two first downs in the first half.

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After giving up a touchdown on the first drive, the defense stiffened.

Jenkins had the big defensive play of the first half when he bull-rushed Patriots guard Shaq Mason back into Tom Brady, who fell and was sacked for a 7-yard loss.

Brady, however, was able to connect with Phillip Dorsett for an 18-yard completion on third-and-17 to keep alive a touchdown drive that ended with his 20-yard pass to Antonio Brown.

Brown, the longtime Pittsburgh Steelers star, made his New England debut and caught three passes on the Patriots’ first drive.

That drive ended with Michel’s 1-yard TD run.

The Dolphins’ best drive of the first half reached the New England 48-yard line, but Fitzpatrick was sacked on third-and-8.

The other four drives of the first half ended in a three-and-out.

Unfortunately for the Dolphins, the offensive struggles continued in the second half.

New England made it 23-0 on Brady’s sneak, which followed an interception by safety Devin McCourty, and the two pick-sixes closed out the scoring.

The Dolphins played without injured safety Reshad Jones (ankle) and wide receiver Albert Wilson (hip/calf).

The Dolphins play their first road game of 2019 next Sunday when they travel to Dallas to face the Cowboys.

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