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Going 1-7 in their last eight contests, the Miami Dolphins needed an upset win Thursday night against the 6-2 Baltimore Ravens to break the ongoing funk of 2021’s season. The Dolphins seemed outmatched going in, with the Ravens entering the contest on a 6-1 tear in their last seven games.
Jacoby Brissett started the game under center for Miami and his play fluctuated between airing throws out for 50/50 plays and splash moments of offense.
Before concluding the half, tied 3-3, Brissett connected with Isaiah Ford on a 52-yard completion to set the team up for the lead, 6-3, off a 22-yard field goal by Jason Sanders as time expired in the second quarter.
Shortly after returning from the half, Brissett went down with an injury off a sack by Baltimore’s Justin Houston. Brissett was able to walk off the field under his own power, but left the door wide open for Alabama product Tua Tagovailoa to take the field.
After being evaluated in the blue medical tent, Brissett’s right knee injury proved to be manageable, but head coach Brian Flores stuck with Tagovailoa for the evening.
Dealing with the imbalance at quarterback, Miami’s defense was the unit to step up for the evening — keeping Lamar’s offense derelict all night. Jackson completed 26-of-43 for 283 passing yards, one touchdown and an interception.
Tua’s relief performance ended with 8 of 13 passes completed, going for 158 yards.
The best, albeit meaningless, play of the game came from Dolphins offensive lineman Robert Hunt. As Tagovailoa got swallowed by defenders in the backfield, he dumped the ball off to Hunt, who ran the distance and fully stretched out for score. As an ineligible receiver, Hunt’s touchdown was nullified but the moment still showcased elite athleticism from the big man, which is always fun to watch.
The Dolphins started getting sloppy halfway through the fourth quarter, committing several penalties to keep the Ravens in the game with plenty of time to go, including two key roughing the passer calls.
Getting the ball in the fourth after a field goal by Miami to go up 9-6, Lamar Jackson’s offense fell flat and faces a crucial 3rd and 10. Veteran receiver Sammy Watkins caught a quick pass from Jackson, but fumbled the ball on a punch-out by Xavien Howard, who scooped the ball up for a 50-yard, pick-six run. Howard’s 27th career takeaway put the ‘Fins up 15-3.
Baltimore inched closer to Miami’s lead with a nine play, 99-yard drive to cut the lead, 15-10.
On the ensuing drive by the Miami Dolphins offense, with 3:30 to play and a slim lead, Tua delivered the dagger with a quick pass to Albert Wilson that went for 64 yards, putting Miami on the doorstep of a sealing score.
Several plays later, Tua punched a rushing score at the goal line, and the Dolphins defense ended the game with a pick on Lamar Jackson to win, 22-10.
The Dolphins improve to a 3-7 record, while the Ravens stay put at 6-3.
Check in Friday morning to read Armando Salguero‘s in-depth recap on the Thursday night win.
Follow along on Twitter: @AlejandroAveela