This piece was written by ALANIS THAMES, a sports reporter for the Associated Press.
MIAMI GARDENS, Fla.
Tyreek Hill acknowledges that he will be punished for his touchdown celebration during the 42-21 victory against the Carolina Panthers on Sunday. The top receiver in the NFL, who caught one of Tua Tagovailoa’s three touchdown passes, stated that the penalty was worth it.
Following a 14-point deficit, Miami (5-1) regained the lead thanks to Hill’s 41-yard touchdown reception towards the end of the second quarter. In celebration, he took hold of a bystander’s phone near the end zone and filmed himself performing a backflip. This resulted in a penalty for unsportsmanlike conduct, marking Hill’s second consecutive game receiving this penalty.
“I always consider the opportunity to make lasting memories whenever I play this game,” Hill expressed. “Each time I take the field, my goal is to make it unforgettable.”
The top receiver in the league caught six passes for 163 yards, adding to his season total of 814 receiving yards, which leads the NFL.
According to Tagovailoa, you can predict his movements and he believes that speed is a game-changer.
Miami rallied and scored 35 consecutive points, but with four minutes remaining, quarterback Tua Tagovailoa was substituted by Mike White, who then threw an interception that was run back for a touchdown by cornerback Troy Hill.
Carolina scored, narrowing the gap to 14 points, but Miami’s Salvon Ahmed sealed the game with a 9-yard run. This solidified Miami’s position as the NFL’s top rushing team, with a total of 162 yards gained on the ground.
Tagovailoa completed 21 out of 31 passes for 262 yards and currently leads the NFL with 1,876 passing yards this season.
The Dolphins (0-6) capitalized on a rare slow start by the Panthers, as Chuba Hubbard scored a 6-yard rushing touchdown in the first quarter. Later on, Bryce Young threw an 8-yard touchdown pass to Adam Thielen.
Young completed 23 out of 38 passes for a total of 217 yards and was sacked four times. Despite being the top pick in the draft, he has yet to secure a win. However, his QB rating of 85.1 in this game was his highest so far.
Thielen achieved over 100 receiving yards for the second consecutive game, recording 115 yards on 11 receptions. Hubbard took over in place of the injured Miles Sanders (shoulder) and had 19 carries for 88 yards. Eddy Pineiro failed to make a 43-yard field goal attempt in the second quarter.
Following two unsuccessful drives, the Dolphins managed to score three consecutive touchdowns.
According to Panthers coach Frank Reich, it is challenging to stop the team when they are performing well. They have skilled players who make significant plays, such as Tyreek who has a unique and powerful running style. Observing this on film is one thing, but experiencing it on the field truly showcases his impact.
Raheem Mostert scored a 3-yard touchdown, reducing the initial gap by half. This was made possible by Hill and Jaylen Waddle’s catches of 27 and 14 yards, respectively. Waddle had a total of 51 yards on seven catches.
Mostert had a total of 17 runs, resulting in 115 yards. One of his runs was for 48 yards in the second quarter, which led to a touchdown catch by Waddle, resulting in a tied score.
Mostert became the primary running back for Miami when De’Von Achane, a rookie, was put on injured reserve due to a knee injury last week. He also had two more rushing touchdowns of 1 and 4 yards, making it his fourth game this season with multiple touchdowns.
Coach Mike McDaniel stated that the individual is eager for any chance presented to him, as evident in his determined running style. In goal line situations, there may not always be a clear-cut play, but it becomes a test of determination. He is not someone that many would be willing to take on and tackle.
HALL OF FAME CELEBRATION
During halftime, the Dolphins paid tribute to linebacker Zach Thomas. Thomas, who was drafted by Miami in the fifth round in 1996, was officially inducted into the Hall of Fame in August. Throughout his career, Thomas received seven Pro Bowl selections, which is the most all-time for a Dolphins defender, and five first-team All-Pro nominations. He also served as an honorary captain on Sunday.
Thomas expressed his affection for Miami to the 65,529 attendees at Hard Rock Stadium, stating that it is his permanent residence and he will always be a member of the Miami Dolphins.
The Dolphins kicked the ball on their initial possession for the first time this year. Prior to Sunday’s game, Miami had scored three touchdowns, a field goal, and lost possession due to a fumble on their opening drives. They had also advanced the ball to within the opponent’s 10-yard line on every opening possession.
Carolina was leading by seven points in the second quarter when they decided to execute a fake punt on fourth-and-8 at their own 49-yard line. Duke Riley and Elijah Campbell successfully pushed Panthers receiver Laviska Shenault Jr. out of bounds just before the first-down marker, resulting in the Dolphins gaining possession of the ball with advantageous field position. Miami was able to score three plays later.
Shenault of the Panthers sustained an ankle injury in the second quarter. LB Yetur Gross-Matos also left the game due to a hamstring injury, while LB Frankie Luvu suffered a hip injury.
Hill was briefly sidelined in the third quarter due to cramping, while cornerback Xavien Howard left the game with a groin injury. Running back Chris Brooks also had to be assisted off the field in the fourth quarter with a leg injury, and was quickly ruled out for the remainder of the game.
Following their bye week, the Panthers will play host to the Houston Texans on October 29th.
Next Sunday night, the Dolphins will be visiting Philadelphia.
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