Only three times has an NFL game ended in overtime due to a safety, and Cameron Wake is now one of the three players to win through a tackle or sack in the end zone, getting to Andy Dalton and cap off a surprising 22-20 win for the Miami Dolphins over the Cincinnati Bengals, ending a losing streak of four games.
On third and 10 on their own 8, Dalton fell back to the goalline but couldn’t release the ball fast enough or get away from the pass rush and got sacked by Wake, who finished the game with three sacks and two more big hits on the quarterback as the Dolphins got through their offensive line problems with an excellent defensive plan to stop the Cincinnati Bengals and pull off the upset.
Ryan Tannehill didn’t throw any touchdown passes, but he also was relatively safe enough against an excellent defense, not turning the ball over even once. He scored the only offensive touchdown of the game for the Dolphins with a one-yard run, as Miami had a pretty easy time slicing through the tired Bengals defense, gaining 157 yards, including 105 from Lamar Miller. The Dolphins made it very difficult for a defense that is usually very good against the run: They gained 85 yards after contact, and Miller’s 57 yards after contact were the most Cincinnati has allowed in a game since Week 5 of the 2011 season.
The Bengals scored two offensive touchdowns – both of them by runs from Giovani Bernard, but this was the game in which Andy Dalton let the “success” and praises from earlier this week get to his head. He threw three interceptions, including one pick-six which was returned for a touchdown by Brent Grimes, his first career touchdown. Despite all of that, Cincinnati held a 20-17 lead until 11 seconds left in the game when Caleb Sturgis hit a field goal and sent the game into overtime.
The Dolphins pass rush caught Dalton by surprise more than once: He was 3-for-11 when the Dolphins rushed with a defensive back, throwing three interceptions and getting sacked for the walkoff safety. It’s only the third time in NFL history a team has won with a safety in overtime. It first happened in 1989 between the Vikings and the Rams and again in 2004 between the Bears and the Titans.
The Bengals got more bad news from this game besides the third loss of the season (all coming when playing away from home), as Geno Atkins had to be taken off and has probably torn his ACL, which means he’s out for the season unless the MRI surprises everyone and tells something different.
You just have to do whatever you can to get to the quarterback. It couldn’t have come at a better time. How much better could it have been than to have a D-lineman seal the deal? You never want to lose four games in a row. It was time for us to step up, and we had to make a decision — what are we going to be? And I thought they answered the bell pretty well tonight.