By Lisa Johnson // @LJ1303
Week two of the 2021 NFL season brought the defending AFC East Champions Buffalo Bills to the Miami Dolphins for their home opener. Last year, they handed Miami a 56 – 26 loss to end their 2020 season.
After losing their home opener to the Pittsburgh Steelers in week 1, the Buffalo Bills looked to rebound against the Dolphins. And rebound they did.
On Miami’s first drive of the game, the Bills defensive line caused Miami’s offensive line all kinds of issues for a quick 3 and out. Following a Dolphins punt, Bills quarterback Josh Allen wasted no time driving the Bills down the field on a 2 play, 46-yard touchdown drive that took all of 12 seconds.
As Miami began its second series of the game, Miami managed a couple of yards and found themselves going for it on a fourth-and-2 from Buffalo’s 48-yard line. Bills defensive end, AJ Epenesa, beat Dolphin’s right tackle, Jesse Davis, for a clear path to Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa.
Feeling the pressure and taking a good hit, Tua threw an incomplete pass turning the ball over on downs. Following the play, Tua laid on the turf in some obvious pain. He then attempted to reach the Dolphins sidelines before falling to his knees. After a brief stay on the bench. Dolphins brought the cart around and took him to the locker room for a reported rib injury. Tua did not return to the game.
As Miami went to back-up quarterback Jacoby Brissett. The Bills continue their assault on this Dolphins offensive line. Along with the Dolphins offensive line woes, Miami’s receivers didn’t help matter with dropped balls and fumbles.
Miami’s coach Brian Flores whose record is now 0-5 against the Buffalo Bills, had this to say after the game.
Q: How do you explain what happened out there today?
“I mean, we didn’t play well in any area. We beat ourselves, you know. Penalties, dropped passes, missed tackles. That starts with me. I got to do a better job. I got to do a better job getting us ready to go.
That wasn’t the case today. Give Buffalo credit, they’re a good team. They played well in all three phases. We need to do a much better job from an execution standpoint and give ourselves an opportunity to be in the game, which I thought early we missed a lot of opportunities, so…”
Q: They came out with seven or eight-man front blitzes, right from the first play. What went wrong schematically with you? Or was it individuals?
“I got to go back and watch the film. We got a lot of protection issues. I know they were up on the line of scrimmage. When they weren’t, we still had some issues. I have to go back and watch the film to have a lot more understanding of what happened from that standpoint after I watch it.”
Then, Dolphins offensive linemen Robert Hunt answered a few questions.
Q: It seems like they were sending a lot of blitzes to you guys early. Did any surprise you with maybe the type of pressure they sent?
“I can’t say it surprised me. We did our film study, stuff like that. It was a rough day for the Dolphins, you know what I mean? That happens sometimes. We’ll go watch film tomorrow, see what we (expletive) up at, come back and try to be better.”
Both Robert Hunt and Austin Jackson said they knew the defensive schemes Buffalo runs, yet they made no adjustments or showed they did. Overall just a poor showing by this offensive line. Dolphins face the Las Vegas Raiders in Vegas next Sunday, so they better get this fixed quickly.
Follow Lisa on Twitter // @LJ1303