Rocking a pedestrian 6-6 file not too way back, the Buffalo Payments aren’t solely going to the postseason, they’re the No. 2 seed within the AFC.
Within the season’s remaining “Sunday Evening Soccer” matchup, the Payments got here from behind to knock off the Miami Dolphins, 21-14, clinching a fourth consecutive AFC East title and the second spot within the convention bracket. Listed here are three takeaways from the Payments’ thrilling season finale victory:
Do not name it a comeback: Early on towards the Dolphins, it did not appear like it might be the Payments’ evening. Quarterback Josh Allen struggled, particularly throwing two interceptions ultimately zone and one ball wanting the objective line as time expired earlier than halftime.
Nonetheless, with Buffalo trailing 14-7 on the break, he bounced again in a giant means, going 14-of-15 for 141 yards and a landing whereas speeding for 41 of his 67 floor yards within the second half.
“I used to be beating us,” Allen mentioned through Matt Parrino of syracuse.com. “However we’re a resilient group and saved working arduous.”
Due to Allen and a protection that picked off QB Tua Tagovailoa twice whereas holding him to solely 167 yards passing (6.0 YPC), the Payments’ wild-card opponent would be the Pittsburgh Steelers, who barely snuck into the postseason and can possible begin Mason Rudolph at QB.
Dolphins’ late collapse could result in early playoff exit: As soon as the overwhelming favourite to seize the No. 1 seed within the AFC, issues aren’t trying nice for the Dolphins. With Sunday’s loss, they’ve misplaced two in a row and three of 5 to shut out the season, blowing a three-game lead within the AFC East within the course of.
With the two-seed on the road, the Dolphins performed sloppy soccer and appeared the a part of a group destined for a first-round playoff exit. Regardless of closing out the primary half with scores on back-to-back possessions, the offense was largely lifeless, posting 4 punts and an interception over 5 sequence within the second half.
Now, as a substitute of a house playoff sport towards the Payments, the Dolphins should journey to Arrowhead to face off towards Patrick Mahomes and the Kansas Metropolis Chiefs.
Late-game clock snafu might’ve been a game-changer: Whereas it could have had no influence on the consequence, a possible mistake by officers late short-changed the Dolphins.
With 3:12 left within the fourth quarter and the Payments trying to run the clock out nursing a seven-point lead, Allen scrambled free for a 15-yard acquire on third-and-13. Nonetheless, the clock continued to run regardless of the QB’s hand going out of bounds whereas he braced himself for a sort out.
Miami did have one timeout remaining however selected to carry onto it with the two-minute warning approaching. However, the goof price the Dolphins valuable seconds they might’ve used on a remaining offensive drive that resulted in a rushed interception from QB Tua Tagovailoa.