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Buffalo Bills lose AFC East lead to the Miami Dolphins

Injuries, rough heat, bad luck stun the Bills as they lose to the Dolphins 21-19 in Miami


BUFFALO, N.Y. (9-26-2022) - Despite trailing the Miami Dolphins, the Buffalo Bills still had a chance to squeeze out a win, however, the team could not capitalize on a safety to hold on to their undefeated record.

In the final minute of the fourth quarter, the Bills looked to kick a game-winning field goal, but they had no more time-outs. Bills receiver Isaiah McKenzie could not get out of bounds to stop the clock after a reception, resulting in a 21-19 loss for the team.

At the end of the first half, the Bills also had a chance to kick a field goal. But a failed snap by backup center David Quessenberry forced Allen to avoid an intentional grounding penalty.

On their second to last drive, the Bills had 72 yards and 17 plays, but failed to score a touchdown with two minutes left. They also had a chance to extend their third quarter lead after Zack Moss had an amazing 43-yard run to end the third quarter. However, kicker Tyler Bass missed a 38-yard field goal.

Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa then scored the game-winning drive, starting with a 45-yard pass to Jaylen Waddle on a 3rd and 22. Running back Chase Edmonds then capped off the drive with a two yard touchdown to give the Dolphins their first lead of the game.

The Dolphins were able to take advantage of the injuries to the Bills entire team, especially the defensive line. Before the game the Dolphins front seven did not have a sack and then collected three in the first half, after Buffalo center Mitch Morse was ruled out and Spencer Brown left due to heat illness.

The defense held Miami to 212 yards on just 39 offensive snaps. For the Bills, defensive end Gregory Rousseau had one and a half sacks during the game and linebacker Matt Milano almost had a pick six. Rousseau said the lack of turnovers was what cost them the game.

"Sometimes good isn't good enough," Rousseau told the Buffalo News. "We wish we could have made that turnover or that big splash play. I know I wish I could've had a few plays back. We've just got to push to make that extra play to get the win."

The defense held Tagovailoa to 186 yards and one touchdown on 13 of 18 passing. Milano also had a hit on Tua that resulted in him being evaluated for a concussion at the end of the first half.

Meanwhile, players on the offense like Gabriel Davis had a moment when he almost caught a touchdown, but the ball was knocked out of his hands. McKenzie also had 76 yards and a touchdown on seven receptions.

Despite the loss, Allen had an amazing game, throwing for 400 yards and two touchdowns on 42 for 63 passing, and also ran for 47 yards on eight carries. Rookie running back James Cook also had moments of promise in the receiving game, catching 37 yards on four receptions. It's possible his role in the Bills backfield might increase as the season goes on.

The Bills lost this game because of poor time management and the Dolphins superior defense that day. Their only hope now is to get some of their starters back and regroup against the Baltimore Ravens next Sunday at M&T Stadium.

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