Sunday, December 9, 2012

Fins can't make enough plays down stretch in loss


For the second week in a row, the Miami Dolphins hung tough with one of the best teams in the NFL. And for the second week in a row, they couldn't make enough plays in the fourth quarter.

The Dolphins spent more than three quarters of time within a touchdown or less of the San Francisco 49ers but couldn't get it done down the stretch in a 27-13 loss that all but mathematically eliminated them from playoff contention.

“We told the team all week that I anticipated that we would be in a position to win the game in the fourth quarter," Dolphins coach Joe Philbin said after the game, via "We told them we had to play a clean game because this is a good football team and we had to execute well. We didn’t make the plays in the fourth quarter and they did and they deserved to win.”

Dolphins quarterback Ryan Tannehill connected with tight end Anthony Fasano midway through the final stanza to bring Miami within a touchdown, and the defense forced a three-and-out to put the ball back in the offense's hands.

Tannehill, however, threw two incompletions before being given a new set of downs via a 49ers penalty. He then threw four straight incomplete passes, and 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick sealed it with a 50-yard touchdown run.

Frank Gore and Anthony Dixon also found the end zone for San Francisco, and 49ers' David Akers and Dolphins' Dan Carpenter each connected on a pair of field goals.

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