- James Walker, ESPN Staff Writer
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A stinker: It was a rare sight, but the Dolphins finally laid an egg and it came at an awful time against the Bills. Miami had been competitive in every game but one this season -- against the New Orleans Saints in September. But this was the second time the Dolphins simply didn’t show up. This was easily Miami’s worst performance of the season. There wasn’t much the Dolphins did well in this game that they can carry over into the regular-season finale. This is one of those games the Dolphins have to forget quickly and put behind them.
Pass-protection issues: A major reason Miami’s offense was shut out for the first time this season was due to lack of pass protection. The Dolphins allowed seven sacks on quarterback Ryan Tannehill. The Bills brought pressure from various places and the Dolphins looked ill-prepared or were just outplayed. Miami also set a team record with 58 quarterback sacks allowed -- and the Dolphins still have one game remaining.
Still alive: With all that said, the Dolphins still have a decent chance to make the playoffs. The two scenarios for Miami to make the playoffs would be: (1) The Dolphins beat the New York Jets next week and the Baltimore Ravens lose to the Bengals; (2) the Dolphins, Ravens and San Diego Chargers all win, which would create a three-way tie that Miami owns due to a better conference record.
Jets next: Miami will host the rival Jets in the regular-season finale. The Jets will be out for revenge after the Dolphins beat them easily 23-3 on Dec. 1. New York is out of the playoff race but would not mind extending its misery to the Dolphins in the final game of the season.