Jay Ajayi became the fourth player in National Football League history to rush for more than 200 yards in consecutive games, leading the Miami Dolphins to a 28-25 upset win over the Buffalo Bills on Sunday afternoon at Hard Rock Stadium.
Picking up right where he left off last week, Ajayi turned 39 carries into 214 rushing yards and a touchdown. They've conceded only two runs of 20 or more yards; Ajayi has four. In that game, Miami managed just 51 yards rushing, with 42 of them coming from Ajayi. Not since Justin Timberlake in the early 2000s has someone with frosted tips been on such a roll. With LeSean McCoy not looking like himself and Robert Woods unavailable, Tyrod Taylor did his best to make chicken salad out of, well, you know.
The first quarter got off with the Dolphins scoring a 36-yard field goal on their first drive to take a 3-0 lead. He refused to go down on first contact. Williams was hurt while diving headfirst in an attempt to tackle Patriots receiver Julian Edelman in Week 2.
The successful ground game has reduced pressure on Ryan Tannehill, who has been sacked only once in the past two games while posting his highest passer ratings of the year. We got whipped by the Jets. but we definitely got out-physicaled yesterday and we had the same blueprint. In fact he wasn't just benched he was left home for the opening game.
So it's a stretch to expect 200 rushing yards again.
Who knew Jay Ajayi was this good? "He's a physical back". In addition to essentially erasing a hobbled McCoy from the offense, that group prevented Taylor from getting comfortable in the pocket while also limiting his effectiveness as a runner. "Just keep being consistent - that's my main focus. And then, before the game, we took him to pregame and he was running routes at full speed and bursting". Despite trailing, Ajayi controlled the game as he had 99 rushing yards at the half. Only Ricky Williams had more when he ran for 228 in Orchard Park back in 2002. "You don't want to say too much, but you also want to let him know that we continue to have faith in him".
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After that week one benching there was a lot of speculation that the Dolphins would try to trade the former 5th round draft pick or even possibly cut him.
"We'll see how the week unfolds", Ryan said. "We were trying base defense". Obviously, it gives you a little bit of confidence, but we have been working so hard.
The defense didn't have an answer for the Miami offense in the second half. With that said, it will certainly be interesting to see how Ryan and the Bills respond following a momentum killer in Miami.
Buffalo came into this game as the hottest team in the league.
Ryan said he's "not sure" if McCoy's hamstring injury is worse now than it was late in the week, but he wouldn't have played him without total clearance and what happened Sunday won't change his decision making going forward.
One player won't fix the issues the Bills had Sunday, though.