Friday, November 16, 2012

Bills' defense shows up, Dolphins' offense doesn't


If only for one night, the Buffalo Bills' defense looked like it was supposed to going into the season.

It stopped the run, was effective against the pass and forced turnovers to lead Buffalo to a 19-14 victory over the Miami Dolphins Thursday night.

Buffalo's defensive unit, led by coordinator and former Dolphins' head coach Dave Wannstedt, was expected to make vast improvements after an offseason spending spree. Instead, the group was among the league's worst in many areas.

But it would live up to it's billing on this night.

The Bills allowed just 184 total yards to the Dolphins, including just 60 yards rushing. Buffalo came into the matchup with the NFL's last-ranked rushing defense, allowing an average of 163.7 yards per contest.

Buffalo's defining defensive performance of the season was punctuated by timely takeaways, including late fourth quarter interceptions by Jairus Byrd and Bryan Scott as Miami was attempting to stage a comeback. Rookie cornerback Stephon Gilmore also forced a fumble early on.

Dolphins' rookie quarterback Ryan Tannehill struggled throughout the game against the Bills' defensive scheme, completing just 50 percent of his passes and throwing the two picks down the stretch.

Miami fell to 0-5 in games in which Tannheill threw an interception.

Free agent acquisition Mario Williams recorded a sack, as did the recently re-signed linebacker Shawne Merriman. Defensive lineman Kyle Williams also made his presence felt.

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