1) Dolphins Overcome Mother Nature
The Miami Dolphins and Tennessee Titans played the longest game in NFL history on Sunday at Hard Rock Stadium. The contest lasted seven hours and eight minutes. Somehow, both teams were able to create explosive plays, but in the end it was Miami that came out on top, 27-20. The weather delays might have thinned out the opening day crowd, but the fans that stayed idle over the three hour delays were entertained all day long. Miami was able to get it done in all three phases of the game and they needed an entire team effort to get their first win of the season.
2) Explosive Plays
The Dolphins found chunk yardage plays on offense and special teams and were able to take the football away with their defense. The fireworks started when Jakeem Grant took a kickoff 102 yards to give the Dolphins a 17-10 lead early in the fourth quarter. Quarterback Ryan Tannehill followed that score when he found WR Kenny Stills for a 75-yard touchdown later in the quarter to take a 14-point lead. On defense Pro Bowl safety Reshad Jones proved why he’s still one of the most talented players in the league, grabbing two interceptions and taking momentum away from the Titans. Linebacker Kiko Alonso also snagged one away from Tennessee that set up the Dolphins offense with excellent field position.
3) Getting Everyone Involved
It was a team effort that propelled Miami in the home opener and multiple players on offense touched the ball to make that happen. Both Kenyan Drake and Frank Gore added to the rushing attack behind an offensive line that played with consistency and toughness. Drake used his speed and vision to gain his yards and Gore’s explosiveness and experience combined to have him rush for 61 yards on nine carries. The ball was also spread around to the wide receivers, making it easier for Ryan Tannehill to move the offense. Newcomer Albert Wilson was used both as a receiver and runner to give this offense an added dimension. Jakeem Grant used his speed to create space in the secondary for himself and the rest of the receiving group. On defense, nickel corner Minkah Fitzpatrick showed his talent for tackling in the open field, stoping a fourth down attempt inside the two-yard line and corner Bobby McCain used his quick reflexes and tenacity batting away a would-be reception.