G14: Dolphins 24, Jacksonville 3 (Final): Tannehill's 2 TD passes lift Miami past Henne, Jags; Perfect Season team takes 40th anniversary curtain call
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Club marks 40th anniversary of Perfect Season: The biggest applause during halftime introductions, by my ear, in order, were for Don Shula, Larry Csonka, Bob Griese, Jim Mandich (posthumously), Larry Little and Nick Buoniconti. It was the latest curtain call for the 1972 Dolphins team that went 17-0. Click on Family for today's latest column by me, an unabashed appreciation of what that season meant to Miami and, more than that, what the Dolphins mean to so many in South Florida.
Click on Small Opponent, But Big Win For Tannehill, Dolphins for my column off the game.
G14: JACKSONVILLE @ DOLPHINS: Final: Weak opponent, yes, but an all-round solid effort by Dolphins. Tannehill with his best game statistically as a pro, Bush over 100 yards rushing today and Hartline tops 1,000 yards receiving for the year. As for defense? Well, a TD-shutout is big no matter the foe. Miami now 6-8. ..... 4Q: Henne-to-Shorts 4-yard apparent TD pass for Jags is negated; Shorts did not have both feet in bounds in end zone. Then 4th-down pass is knocked down by Cam Wake. ... Tannehill to Fasano for 2-yard TD pass and 24-3 lead after same two combo'd for a 2-point conversion toss. ... Dolphins defense stops Jags on 4th-and-1 from Miami 15. ..... 3Q: Carpenter 31-yard FG for a 16-3 MIA lead just before end of third. Tannehill's 30-yard run helps set it up. ... Reggie Bush busts a 53-yard run, leads to 30-yard Carpenter kick and 13-3 lead. ... Miami should be up 13-3 after a short, gimmie FG but is not because a fake-FG failed when holder Brandon Fields (the punter) launched a pass way out of the end zone. ..... Half: Perfect Season team being honored; see above. ... Not much offense by Miami with 110 total yards, but it's been enough so far thanks largely to a Jax TD negated by a penalty. ..... 2Q: Miami with first lead of game, 10-3, just inside 2-minute warning on Tannehill 4-yard strike into end zone to Javorskie Lane. ... Dolphins make 4th-down stop as Jags eschew FG try, so no harm comes of turnover. ... What a lucky break for Miami! After Jags recover a Tannehill fumble on sack at Miami 20, a 20-yard Henne TD pass is negated by an illegal substitution. ..... 1Q: Creepy inflatable Dolphin doin' it Gangnam style during timeout. Any diversion will do, thanks. ... This game is living up (down?) to expectations. ... Dolphs knot it 3-3 on Carpenter 53-yard kick, after 3rd-down incompletion that Tannehill should have thrown better but Matthews perhaps should have caught. ... Jags hit first, up 3-0. Henne 38-yard completion leads opening Jags drive capped by 37-yard FG. ... The pregame moment of silence for the Connecticut school massacre was one of the quietest, and most emotional, I have ever experienced. ..... Original post: The Jaguars are 2-11. Miami is 5-8. May I be frank? Only fans of either team or those betting the game would watch this. (I don't even include the fantasy factor, because if your team made the fantasy playoffs chances are your roster includes few if any Dolphins or Jags). For me, about all that compels here is the quarterback subplot: the largely symbolic duel of rookie Ryan Tannehill and ex-Dolphin Chad Henne. I say symbolic because nothing will be proved or refuted no matter what happens or who performs better. But you can bet Jeff Ireland will be looking for somebody to high-five if Tannehill looks and plays decisively better than Henne to further justify the club's decision and direction at the most important position. This would be another very good day for Tannehill to be very good. Aside to Ryan: Don't wanna be pushy, but you last threw two TD passes in a game on Oct. 14. Tick-tock. Too much to ask? My pick: Dolphins: 24-13.
Radio, then blog: I'll be yakking Dolphins nonstop on the 790 The Ticket pregame show starting this morning at 10 a.m. Ears welcome. Then I'll be right back here at kickoff for our Live Boutique Blog.