NFL News & Analysis

NFL Wild-Card Game Recap: Buffalo Bills 34, Miami Dolphins 31

Orchard Park, NY, USA; Buffalo Bills quarterback Josh Allen (17) scrambles away from Miami Dolphins linebacker Jaelan Phillips (15) during the second half in a NFL wild card game at Highmark Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mark Konezny-USA TODAY Sports

At the end of the first quarter, it looked like the hefty 13.5-point spread was far too small for what was transpiring on the football field. However, the Miami Dolphins battled back after a number of turnovers to make it a game.

In the end, the Buffalo Bills iced a 34-31 win to move onto the divisional round.

Offensive spotlight: That was the full Josh Allen experience if I’ve ever seen it — six big-time throws, two turnover-worthy plays and multiple first downs with his legs. The “wow” plays were prevalent on both ends of the spectrum.

Many of those went to big-game Gabe Davis, who was back in his playoff form from a year ago. He hauled in six of his nine targets for 113 yards and a score. In his last three playoff games, Davis now has 355 yards and six scores.

Defensive spotlight: The Dolphins defense sacked Allen seven times on the day, but it was the man who didn’t record a single one who did the most damage. Jaelan Phillips did everything he could to get the Dolphins a win, as he racked up a ridiculous nine pressures and six run stops — both figures led all players in the game. It was quite the cherry on top of a dynamite second season for the former first-round pick. While the final grade is still under review, there’s a chance he finishes with an overall grade on the year over 90.0.

Rookie spotlight: Asking a seventh-round rookie to drop back to pass 51 times in a road playoff game against the 13-3 Bills is absurd, but the fact that few batted an eye speaks to how advanced Thompson has looked this season. His stats also would have looked much better were it not for a number of long drops and missed opportunities in contested situations. Ultimately, he tried to bite off a little more than he could chew a few too many times on Sunday. His three turnover-worthy plays were the most we saw from him in any game this season.

Offensive line spotlight: The Bills are going to have to find a way to deal with their right tackle problem going forward in the playoffs. Spencer Brown allowed seven pressures on 48 pass-blocking snaps Sunday. It was the fourth time in 15 starts this season that he’s allowed at least six pressures in a game.

Box Score

Passing
Miami Dolphins
Player Fantasy Comp/Att Yds YPA TD Int Sacks Rtg
Skylar Thompson 13.1 18 / 45 220 4.9 1 2 4 44.7
Buffalo Bills
Player Fantasy Comp/Att Yds YPA TD Int Sacks Rtg
Josh Allen 28.1 23 / 39 352 9.0 3 2 7 93.1
Rushing
Miami Dolphins
Player Fantasy Car Yds YPC TD Long Fum Lost
Tyreek Hill 16.4 2 5 2.5 0 8 0
Skylar Thompson 13.1 2 3 1.5 0 2 0
Jeff Wilson Jr. 10.6 10 23 2.3 1 6 0
Jaylen Waddle 8.2 1 8 8.0 0 8 0
Salvon Ahmed 7.8 5 3 0.6 0 6 0
Buffalo Bills
Player Fantasy Car Yds YPC TD Long Fum Lost
Josh Allen 28.1 4 20 5.0 0 12 1
James Cook 9.9 12 39 3.2 1 13 0
Devin Singletary 4.8 10 48 4.8 0 13 0
Receiving
Miami Dolphins
Player Fantasy Tgt Rec Yds YPT TD Long
Tyreek Hill 16.4 15 7 69 4.6 0 19
Jeff Wilson Jr. 10.6 4 1 13 3.2 0 13
Mike Gesicki 9.5 6 2 15 2.5 1 8
Jaylen Waddle 8.2 7 3 44 6.3 0 25
Salvon Ahmed 7.8 5 3 45 9.0 0 20
Durham Smythe 3.0 1 1 20 20.0 0 20
Cedrick Wilson Jr. 2.4 1 1 14 14.0 0 14
Trent Sherfield 0.0 2 0 0 0.0 0 0
Hunter Long 0.0 1 0 0 0.0 0 0
Buffalo Bills
Player Fantasy Tgt Rec Yds YPT TD Long
Gabe Davis 26.3 9 6 113 12.6 1 33
Stefon Diggs 21.4 9 7 114 12.7 0 52
Cole Beasley 11.5 5 2 35 7.0 1 29
Dawson Knox 11.0 5 3 20 4.0 1 11
Khalil Shakir 8.1 5 3 51 10.2 0 31
Quintin Morris 2.2 1 1 12 12.0 0 12
Nyheim Hines 1.7 2 1 7 3.5 0 7
John Brown 0.0 1 0 0 0.0 0 0

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