Bills fall to division rival on Thursday Night Football

Final Score: Miami 22 – Buffalo 9

Location: Miami Gardens, FL – Sun Life Stadium

W-L records: Buffalo (5-5); Miami (6-4)

*In a Nutshell: *

Game photos of the Week 11 matchup on Thursday Night Football.

In an AFC East matchup that was expected to be a defensive struggle, Buffalo nursed a six-point lead into the third quarter (9-3) thanks to three field goals from Dan Carpenter. Miami however, put together a touchdown drive to take a one-point lead (10-9), and the Dolphins defense shut the door from that point forward. Ryan Tannehill and the Dolphins' offense awoke to score 17 unanswered points to end the game with the defense contributing a safety in a pivotal 22-9 victory.

An intentional grounding penalty on Kyle Orton resulted in a safety for Miami to push the Dolphins' lead to three (12-9) late in the third quarter. The Bills offense couldn't muster much of anything in the second half as they went 0-7 on third down conversions over the final two quarters and 0-2 in the red zone for the game.

The loss dropped the Bills to 5-5 on the season, 2-2 in the division and 2-5 versus AFC opponents as they slipped perilously behind in the AFC playoff race. Miami moved into sole possession of second place in the division with the victory improving to 6-4.

How it went down:
--The Dolphins got on the scoreboard first going on a 14-play 68-yard march before Caleb Sturgis put a 38-yard field goal through the uprights for a 3-0 lead with 6:40 left in the opening quarter.

--Buffalo also scored on their first possession with a 14-play 67-yard drive, which resulted in a 33-yard field goal from Dan Carpenter to tie the score at 3-3 with :18 seconds left in the first quarter.

--Jerry Hughes forced a Ryan Tannehill fumble on a scramble run and Duke Williams recovered the loose ball and returned it to the Bills' 12-yard line. Buffalo's offense then went on their longest drive of the season taking 9:24 off the clock before Carpenter hit a 21-yard field goal for a 6-3 lead with 3:26 remaining in the first half.

--Buffalo tacked on another field goal at the end of an eight-play 49-yard drive with Carpenter hitting from 46 yards out for a 9-3 lead in the third quarter.

--The Dolphins were able to retake the lead for the first time since the opening quarter when Tannnehill hit a wide open Brandon Gibson for a seven-yard touchdown strike to cap a nine-play 80-yard drive (10-9) with two minutes remaining in the third quarter.

--After a late intentional grounding call long after the play was over resulted in a safety for Miami, Buffalo kicked away. On the Jarvis Landry return Nigel Bradham forced a fumble that was recovered by Nickell Robey at the Dolphins' 39-yard line.

--Unfortunately Buffalo's offense could manage just 10 yards on the drive and Dan Carpenter missed wide left on the 47-yard field goal attempt.

--Miami was then the beneficiary of a 24-yard pass interference call on the next possession that set the Dolphins up at the Bills' 13-yard line. Two plays later Tannehill found Jarvis Landry for an eight-yard touchdown play to balloon the Miami lead to 19-9 early in the fourth quarter.

--After Buffalo failed on a fourth down conversion deep in their own territory Miami kicked a short field goal to cap the scoring (22-9).

Stat lines:
--Kyle Orton was 22-39 passing for 193 yards and a passer rating of 69.7.

--Chris Hogan led Buffalo's receivers with seven catches for 74 yards.

--RBs Bryce Brown and Boobie Dixon combined for 49 rushing yards on 16 carries for a 3.0 yards per carry average.

--After going 6-8 on third down conversions in the first half, Buffalo's offense went 0-7 in the second half.

Quotes from the locker room:
"To get just three points off the two turnovers you can't do that especially when the ball started in their plus 50 range and you can't do that. You've got to be able to take advantage of those situations and finish and we were outscored. But it was a team loss. There's no doubt about that when you look at all the things that happened out there." 
--Head coach Doug Marrone

"Our performance isn't good enough right now. We've got to go back to the drawing board a little bit and just the only thing I know is to go back and work harder and try to work harder and try to get better and it starts with the quarterback. My job is to put points on the board and whatever I need to do to get the offense better that's what I need to do." 
--QB Kyle Orton

"That's pretty much what it was missed tackles. We had a couple of miscommunications and that was it. We've just got to make the plays when we've got the opportunity. We were in position. We've just got to finish." 
--LB Nigel Bradham

Photos of Mario Williams wearing contacts that turn his eyes a fiery red on gameday.

Subplots:
--The Buffalo pass rush was led by Mario Williams, who had 3.5 sacks in the game. As a unit the defense had five sacks on the night.

--The Bills won the turnover battle 2-0, but managed to score just three points off takeaways as their other possession after a takeaway resulted in a missed field goal.

--Leodis McKelvin left the game in the first half with an ankle injury and did not return. He appeared to roll his ankle inward when his footing in the turf slipped.

--Bryce Brown got the start at running back for Buffalo. He also served as the team's kick returner with Marquise Goodwin out with a rib injury.

--Buffalo dressed WR Mike Williams who was targeted on a red zone play and also served on special teams.

--Nigel Bradham had his second forced fumble in his last two games.

--Fred Jackson was inactive due to his groin injury.

*Inactives: *
RB Fred Jackson, CB Ron Brooks, RB Phillip Tanner, LB Randell Johnson, OL Cyrus Kouandjio, WR Marquise Goodwin, DE Jarius Wynn.

*Up Next: *
The Bills have a 10-day window before they host another AFC East rival in the New York Jets, who are coming off their bye, on Nov. 23 for a 1 p.m. kickoff at Ralph Wilson Stadium.

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