* The punt coverage units were excellent today. Starting with Brandon Fields the punt team handled the tough weather and kept the Bills pinned back deep.
* Nolan Carroll's INT
* Nolan Carroll's CB Blitz for a sack of QB Thad Lewis
* Red Zone defense. The Bills were 1-4. At the end of the day, the defense did only give up one TD.
* 3rd down defense. The defense held the Bills to 7 of 19.
* The staff subbing Nate Garner for Sam Brenner. Brenner was getting manhandled. The change needed to happen.
* Charles Clay's effort on an attempted catch (overruled on review) was good to see. He did not give up and played hard to the bitter end.
* Joe Philbin had good clock management at the end of the half. He used his timeouts and the defense forced RB C.J. Spiller out of bounds killing the clock. It forced a punt another offensive try.
* The team was flat. No emotion. Poor body language all game.
* The Dolphins were shutout.
* Minus 1 Turnover Differential
* Total yards: 109 for Miami and 390 for the Buffalo
* TOP: Miami's 23:29 to 36:21 for Buffalo
* No big plays. The Fins need to get explosive plays some place and none of that happened today.
* 3rd down offense: 2-14
* Ryan Tannehill struggled. 10-27, 0 TD's and 0 Int
* 7 Sacks given up. The line was at fault. The RB's blitz pickups were terrible. Daniel Thomas was indecisive along with typically ineffective. The line was abused throughout the game.
* Brian Hartline dropped three passes.
* The run game was ineffective. At the same time, against a bad run defense, they attempted only 12 runs (for 14 yards). This game was still close going well into the 4th quarter. The Fins had some negative runs, but at the same time the coaching staff never gave the run game a chance on day it was needed.
* Lamar Miller was buried on the depth chart. Not sure why. The answer will be his pass pro skills, but DT was lousy in that role today. Miller has had success versus the Bills in his first two years of his young career.
* RT has to keep the ball on the read option. There were plays to be made. Instead of tucking the ball and handed it off for little to no gain too many times.
* Matt Moore had two bad picks. One was well behind the receiver after he connected deep to Hartline. The other he emerged from a scrum and heaved it deep to nobody.
* No points off of the Carroll interception.
* Penalties: 6 penalties for 37 yards.
* Rush defense. They gave up 203 yards on 51 carries.
* The defense had terrible understanding what the Bills wanted to do on offense. They were going run the ball or toss it deep on early downs. If they were off schedule, they would run a screen or draw.
* Phillip Wheeler's hands to the face penalty was a killer. The defense had a stop deep in the Bills' territory and looked like they were going to force a punt. However, Wheeler's undisciplined penalty kept a drive alive for the Bills.
* Nolan Carroll beaten by Robert Woods for 50 plus yards.
* The defense got torched by Buffalo's TE's.
* Philip Wheeler was a liability in coverage.
* Missed opportunities for turnovers. Leodis McKelvin put the ball on the carpet off of a punt, but the Bills recovered. C.J. Spiller fumbled in the 4th, but two Bills jumped on the ball before any Dolphin made a bid on the ball.
* The Dolphins were out-coached in all phases. They had no adjustments to the Bills' blitzing schemes. They had no change of pace ideas to make the Bills blitz looks slow down. Defensively, they needed to own the LOS and force Thad Lewis in known passing situations...it did not happen.
* Joe Philbin had a bad challenge on a sideline play, that at best, would have been worth 15 yards. The replay was not conclusive.
* While the Dolphins had too many undisciplined moments, the officiating was bad today. Gilmore should have been flagged for flinging Hartline to the ground after an incompletion. A flag was thrown, but the ref that tossed the flag was talked out of it. Mario Williams was holding Bryant McKinnie yet McKinnie made a bid for the outside blitzer. McKinnie ended up getting the flag for trying to protect his QB. Terrible miss by the refs. Charles Clay caught that ball and it did not hit the ground. There was certainly not any obvious evidence that it did hit the ground. It never should have been overturned. Cam Wake was held on a run in the 4th to set up a Bills clinching FG. The Dolphins did nothing to help themselves in this game and did not lose because of the refs, but they were not aided by them either.
* The weather did play a role in hurting the Dolphins today. It was an issue debated all week and those that were concerned with the task of going to Buffalo in December were vindicated.
* Another place of concern was the amount of emotion and energy used in the win versus New England. The Dolphins had no life today and were able to continue the success from previous weeks.
* Bills DC Mike Pettine owned Joe Philbin, Mike Sherman and Ryan Tannehill twice this year.
* How does a 5-9 team without its starting QB, best WR, its second best WR ejected and its starting SS out, beat you 19-0? The answer is the Bills wanted it more. The Bills were also coached better and they had match ups to exploit versus the Dolphins. The Dolphins had no answers how to use their own strengths against the opponent and no ideas to circumvent the strengths of the Bills.
* Specifically, in terms of the pass rush of Buffalo, where were the screens? Where was the maximum protections and shots deep? Where was the quick hot reads in the vacancy of the blitzing slot CB? Where was the bootleg to move the pocket? The coaching staff had no in game answer to something their team was deficient in. Very concerning.
* Why run the read option if the QB never runs the ball? He had chances to make yards today, but RT never kept the ball.
* It was concerning that the Dolphins defense seemed not to know the Bills offensive tendencies.
* What a terrible broadcast. Spero Dedes, Steve Beuerlein and the F crew had an awful day. They got names wrong. The camera crew had the facial shots going of players and coaches while measurements were happening or players were injured. Beuerlein inexplicably said the Fins should allow the Bills to score a TD midway through the 4th to "keep it a two score game" (the TD would have made it 17 to 0). He somehow thought Woods should not have been ejected after throwing a close line punch to Reshad Jones. Dedes said the Bills had a great fan base yet were one of two teams with a blackout this year. Just simply a terrible broadcast.
* The Buffalo Bills got their typical December win in bad weather in which their fans can be happy. Yet they are under .500 again for yet another year.
* Four new offensive linemen are needed next year. Mike Pouncey should stay. However, both tackles should not be re-signed. The team should move on from John Jerry. Sam Brenner can be developed, but he could help best by being a depth player. Nate Garner can again be a "super sub". Two free agent linemen must be added along with two draft picks from May's draft.
* The team most become more physical. In order to win in Buffalo, New York and New England in December, the Dolphins have to be the more physical team up front. They need to "punch the opponent in the mouth". Since Joe Philbin has taken over the run defense has not been as good, falling from the top of the league to the bottom ten. The offensive line has become more "finesse" as well. The "blue collar" approach like that of Seattle, San Francisco and Baltimore should be used as the template of future Dolphins teams.
* Phillip Wheeler is a major liability that needs to be replaced next season. He has not been an upgrade over Kevin Burnett. Jelani Jenkins could be his replacement. It is a matter of when.
* While not popular, going 9-7 this year is progress. I thought the team was a 9-7 or 10-6 team this year. I wanted progress not playoffs necessarily. A win next week is obviously important to the playoff aspirations of the team, but it is also vital to the progress of the team going into next year. Demand progress for this team. Next week will tell us a lot about this team in many ways.
* With all this being said, the Miami Dolphins are still in this. With a Chargers win and Patriots win, EVERYTHING is still in front of the Dolphins. The Chiefs have little to play for next week, helping San Diego. The Ravens will have to play well to beat the Bengals. I do not see Marvin Lewis pulling back as his team needs to play well going into the tournament after getting bounced in the first round the past few years. That leads us to Miami. They have a home game with a rival. They have a bad taste in their mouths from a putrid performance from today. Miami can very well make the playoffs after all is said and done.