Rapid Reaction: Dolphins 17, Rams 14
October, 14, 2012
By James Walker | ESPN.com
MIAMI -- A few thoughts on the Dolphins' 17-14 victory over the St. Louis Rams.
What it means: After a slow 1-3 start, the Dolphins have won two in a row to climb back to .500 (3-3). Miami is overachieving beyond most people's expectations. This is projected to be a rebuilding year with a rookie quarterback, but Miami is a tough out each week and starting to win close games.
Tannehill stands tall: The Rams' defense knows how to get after the quarterback. One week after sacking Arizona Cardinals quarterback Kevin Kolb nine times, St. Louis sacked Dolphins rookie Ryan Tannehill two times and hit him three additional times. But Tannehill stood tall and fought back with 185 yards and two touchdown passes. Tannehill's passer rating was 112.0.
Third option: All season, the Dolphins have been waiting for a third receiver to step up opposite starters Brian Hartline and Davone Bess. It turns out Marlon Moore finally shows up in Week 6. Moore recorded three receptions for 46 yards and a touchdown. Opponents are focusing so much more on Hartline and Bess that it opens up opportunities for other players like Moore to step up.
Good field goal karma: This season, it has been the Dolphins missing key field goals. But that luck changed on Sunday, as the Rams missed two big attempts that were costly in the first half. St. Louis kicker Greg Zuerlein was 2-for-5, and the trio of misses haunted the Rams. Miami kicker Dan Carpenter, who has struggled this season, made his only field goal attempt.
What's next: The Dolphins have a much-needed bye week to rest and get healthy. Miami will play three of its next four games on the road, and it starts with a big division road game Oct. 28 against the rival New York Jets. New York won the first meeting in a 23-20 overtime thriller in Week 3.