Videos by OutKick
It was a marathon seemingly run on the face of the sun, with players succumbing to South Florida’s humidity and cramps and exhaustion. They crawled or limped off the field after plays only to return later to take more of the punishment.
And as these two apparent heavyweights — the AFC East champion Buffalo Bills and contender Miami Dolphins —traded blows, the issue was decided on the Dolphins behalf, 21-17.
And this was the picture of victory:
Quarterback Tua Tagovailoa consoling a despondent Josh Allen, who’s head was on his counterpart’s shoulder.
And this was the picture of defeat:
Buffalo Bills offensive coordinator Ken Dorsey, ripping his headset off and slamming them on the table in front of him before ripping his playsheet in utter frustration because time simply ran out on the Bills.
This was one was a roller coaster ride and we know that because multiple players on either side felt like throwing up. And needed IVs at halftime.
And simply had nothing left in the tank after the rough ride.
The pain will wear off much quicker for the Dolphins because they just authored their first victory over the Bills in eight games. And they’ve taken the AFC East lead for the first time since, well, a long time because the Bills have dominated the division for the past two years.
The beginning of this one had the Dolphins take a 7-0 lead and that was the first time this year the Bills trailed after games against the defending Super Bowl champion Los Angeles Rams and Tennessee Titans, last year’s top seed in the AFC.
This one was strange for the Dolphins in that last week they authored an amazing fourth-quarter comeback. In this one they authored an amazing fourth-quarter stand, holding on to a slim 4-point lead before giving up a safety when a Thomas Morstead punt was blocked out of the end zone with 1:33 left in the game.
This one was strange in that Josh Allen played a great game 42 of 63 passes for 400 yards and 2 TDs. But he missed on the most important pass of the game, when he short-armed a fourth-down throw to Isaiah McKenzie in the end zone for the lead inside of two minutes to play.
This was a strange game for the Dolphins as well as last week they made their comeback by getting 36 completions from Tagovailoa on his way to 6 TD passes. Sunday Tua was 13 of 18 for 186 yards and a touchdown/
This one the Dolphins were limited to only 39 total plays.
That says something significant about the Dolphins. They can win doing multiple things, playing multiple styles.
For the Bills, this says they cannot solely rely on Allen carrying them no matter how wonderfully he plays. Because eventually he will show himself human. He may miss one.
And find himself taking solace for a loss on Tagovailoa’s shoulders.
Follow on Twitter: @ArmandSalguero