Oct 10, 2021; London, England, United Kingdom; Atlanta Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan (2) reacts after an NFL International Series game against the New York Jets at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium. The Falcons defeated the Jets 27-20. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Falcons eye .500 against beleaguered Dolphins

Every time Atlanta Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan has faced the Dolphins, Miami has had a different player at his position.

That trend will continue Sunday when the Dolphins (1-5) play host to the Falcons (2-3). Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa has never faced Atlanta.

Ryan, though, is 1-2 against the Dolphins, beating them in 2009 and losing in 2013 and 2017. Miami’s quarterbacks during that span were Chad Pennington (2009), Ryan Tannehill (2013) and Jay Cutler (2017).

Fast forward to 2021, and both the Falcons and Dolphins are coming off games in London. But there are two differences. For starters, the Falcons won in London while the Dolphins had a demoralizing loss to the Jacksonville Jaguars. The Jaguars had lost 20 consecutive games before beating Miami.

The next difference is that Atlanta had a bye week following their trip to London. The Dolphins did not.

Meanwhile, Ryan, earlier this month, became just the seventh NFL quarterback to complete 5,000 passes.

Ryan, 36, is completing 69.1 percent of his passes this season. He is averaging 266.4 passing yards per game and has 10 touchdown throws and just three interceptions.

Despite his advanced age, Ryan’s completion percentage is better than his career number (65.5). In addition, his interception rate is down while his TD rate is up.

Ryan’s emerging top target is tight end Kyle Pitts, the fourth player selected in this year’s draft. Pitts, 21, is coming off a nine-catch, 119-yard, one-touchdown performance against the Jets. In the past 20 years, only two NFL rookie tight ends have had more yards in a game.

“I think there’s going to be a lot more of those games for him,” Ryan said of Pitts. “He’s done a great job focusing on growth and development.”

The Dolphins — after winning 10 games last season — are off to a rough start amid a five-game losing streak.

According to computer projections, the Dolphins have just a 7 percent chance at making the playoffs — and that may be generous. The Dolphins rank 29th in the league in both scoring offense and scoring defense.

After missing three games due to fractured ribs, Tagovailoa returned against the Jaguars and did some good things, completing 33 of 47 passes for 329 yards and two touchdowns. His Dolphins converted on 9 of 17 third-down plays.

However, there were some hiccups for Miami, including one interception and a key failure on a fourth-down play.

“I think we’re very close as a team,” Tagovailoa said. “It’s just little things we can look at in the film room.”

For the season, Tagovailoa is completing 64.1 percent of his passes for three touchdowns, three interceptions and an average of 181.3 yards per game.

Miami’s top playmakers are tight end Mike Gesicki and rookie wide receiver Jaylen Waddle. Gesicki has 30 catches for a team-high 342 yards and one TD. Waddle has a team-high 37 catches for 301 yards and three TDs.

The Falcons are relatively healthy with zero offensive players and no defensive starters showing up on this week’s injury report.

Miami, though, is banged up, with both starting cornerbacks, Xavien Howard (shoulder/groin) and Byron Jones (Achilles/groin), limited in practice this week after missing last Sunday’s game. The same goes for wide receivers DeVante Parker (shoulder/hamstring) and Preston Williams (groin).

In addition, Dolphins rookie pass-rusher Jaelan Phillips was limited this week due to an ankle injury.

–Field Level Media

Jan 3, 2021; Houston, Texas, USA; Houston Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson (4) attempts a pass as Tennessee Titans outside linebacker Harold Landry (58) defends during the fourth quarter at NRG Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

Report: Texans discussing Deshaun Watson trade with Dolphins

The Houston Texans and Miami Dolphins are in trade discussions involving beleaguered quarterback Deshaun Watson, the Houston Chronicle reported on Wednesday.

According to the Chronicle, the trade could happen later this week. The NFL trade deadline is Nov. 2.

Watson hasn’t played for the Texans this season. He stands accused of sexual assault by 22 women who have filed lawsuits. Police and the NFL have ongoing investigations.

But the off-the-field behavior hasn’t prevented the Dolphins from coveting Watson. Miami reportedly has been interested since Watson informed the Texans earlier this year that he would like to be traded.

The Washington Post reported the commissioner’s exempt list could still be in play even if Watson is traded as the NFL and criminal investigations into claims against Watson remain active.

Houston has reportedly sought three first-round selections and two second-round picks in any trade for the 26-year-old Watson.

Though he is disgruntled with the Texans, Watson reported to training camp to avoid being fined $50,000 per day. He attends meetings but hasn’t played in any games.

Watson, a three-time Pro Bowl selection, has passed for 14,539 yards, 104 touchdowns and 36 interceptions in 54 games (53 starts) over four seasons. He established career highs of 4,823 yards and 33 touchdowns last season while throwing a career low seven interceptions.

–Field Level Media

Oct 17, 2021; London, England, United Kingdom; Miami Dolphins outside linebacker Jaelan Phillips (15) is defended by Jacksonville Jaguars guard Andrew Norwell (68) and offensive tackle Cam Robinson (74) in the first half during an NFL International Series game at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Jaguars end 20-game losing skid, jolt Dolphins in London

Matthew Wright made a 53-yard field goal as time expired to help the Jacksonville Jaguars snap a 20-game losing streak, courtesy of a 23-20 win over the Miami Dolphins on Sunday in London.

Wright also made field goals of 54 and 40 yards. The 54-yard field goal with 3:40 left in the fourth quarter was the longest of his career. Entering this game, Jacksonville had not made a single field goal this year.

Jacksonville (1-5) received a strong performance from rookie quarterback Trevor Lawrence and wide receiver Marvin Jones Jr. Lawrence completed 25 of 41 passes for 319 yards and one touchdown, while Jones caught seven passes for 100 yards and one score.

Tua Tagovailoa returned from missing three games with fractured ribs and completed 33 of 47 passes for 329 yards and two touchdowns for Miami (1-5), which hast lost five straight games. Rookie wideout Jaylen Waddle had 10 catches for 70 yards and two touchdowns, while tight end Mike Gesicki had receptions catches for 115 yards.

Tagovailoa completed 8 of 10 passes for 76 yards on the first drive. The drive ended with Tagovailoa’s 7-yard TD pass to Waddle on a slant.

Jacksonville answered with Wright’s 40-yard field goal. The Jaguars became the last NFL team to make a field goal this year.

After second-quarter field goals of 33 and 24 yards by Miami’s Jason Sanders, Jacksonville went into halftime trailing just 13-10 after Lawrence connected with Jones on a 28-yard TD pass.

That capped a six-play drive that included a fourth-down conversion on a pass from Lawrence to Laviska Shenault Jr. On the TD throw, Jones outreached Miami’s Noah Igbinoghene in the end zone.

Jacksonville took its first lead of the game, 17-13, on James Robinson’s 1-yard run with 12:29 left in the third quarter. It marked the first time this season Jacksonville scored on consecutive possessions.

Jaguars cornerback Nevin Lawson, playing his 94th NFL game, got his first career interception. Robinson, however, was stopped on a fourth-down run at Miami’s 9-yard line.

Miami took advantage and drove 91 yards on seven plays as Waddle caught a 2-yard TD pass with 10:25 left in the fourth, giving the Dolphins a 20-17 lead.

Wright then made his 54-yard field goal that curved just inside the right post, tying the score 20-20 with 3:45 left in the fourth.

The winning drive was set up after Miami failed to convert fourth-and-1 from its own 46. Malcolm Brown was stuffed for no gain.

–Field Level Media

Oct 15, 2021; Ware, United Kingdom; Miami Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa (1) throws the ball as quarterback Reid Sinnett (4) wataches during practice at Hanbury Marriott Manor and Country Club. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Dolphins activate QB Tua Tagovailoa from IR

Quarterback Tua Tagovailoa was activated from injured reserve and is expected to start Sunday when the Miami Dolphins and Jacksonville Jaguars square off in London.

Tagovailoa missed the past three games with fractured ribs but practiced without complication Wednesday and Thursday. He is not listed on the team’s injury report for Week 6.

“I’m just 100 percent ready to get back out on the field,”
Tagovailoa said to the Miami Herald after Friday’s practice.

The Dolphins also elevated practice squad wide receivers Isaiah Ford and Kirk Merritt to the active roster.

Ford, 25, had one catch for three yards in last Sunday’s 45-17 loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in his first call-up this season.

Merritt, 24, appeared in one game last season, but was kept off the stat sheet altogether.

Jacoby Brissett, who took over when Tagovailoa exited Week 2 and started the next three games, is limited with a hamstring injury. He is expected to serve as Tagovailoa’s backup.

Tagovailoa steered the Dolphins to a Week 1 win at New England. Miami has lost four in a row since and has been outscored by a league-worst 75 points in its five games this season.

Tagovailoa attempted four passes in Week 2 before leaving the game against the Buffalo Bills. He is 17-of-31 passing with one touchdown, one interception and four sacks this season.

The Jaguars are winless and bring a 20-game losing streak into Sunday’s matchup.

–Field Level Media

Miami Dolphins Miami Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa (1) greets teammates before the start of the game against Indianapolis Colts during NFL game at Hard Rock Stadium Sunday in Miami Gardens.

Syndication Palm Beach Post

Dolphins QB Tua Tagovailoa set for London return

Quarterback Tua Tagovailoa is set to return to the starting role Sunday when the Miami Dolphins and Jacksonville Jaguars square off in London.

Tagovailoa missed the past three games with fractured ribs but practiced without complication Wednesday and Thursday. He is not listed on the team’s injury report for Week 6.

“We’re excited to get him back,” said Dolphins coach Brian Flores.

The Dolphins will be without linebacker Myles Jack, who has been battling a back injury and won’t make the trip to London. He didn’t take part in the past two practices.

On the season, Jack has 36 tackles in five games.

Also Thursday, Jacoby Brissett, who took over when Tagovailoa exited Week 2 and started the next three games, was limited with a hamstring injury.

Tagovailoa steered the Dolphins to a Week 1 win at New England. Miami has lost four in a row since and has been outscored by a league-worst 75 points in its five games this season.

Tagovailoa attempted four passes in Week 2 before leaving the game against the Buffalo Bills. He is 17-of-31 passing with one touchdown, one interception and four sacks this season.

In five games, the Dolphins have used five offensive line combinations.

The 2021 Jaguars are winless and bring a 20-game losing streak into Sunday’s matchup.

–Field Level Media

Sep 19, 2021; Miami Gardens, Florida, USA; Miami Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa (1) attempts to throw the football during the first quarter of the game against the Buffalo Bills at Hard Rock Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Sam Navarro-USA TODAY Sports

Dolphins hope Tua Tagovailoa ready to face Jaguars in London

Quarterback Tua Tagovailoa, who has been out for three weeks with fractured ribs, is on track to return on Sunday when his Miami Dolphins play the Jacksonville Jaguars in London.

“We’re excited to have him back,” Dolphins coach Brian Flores said of Tagovailoa, who practiced on Wednesday. “We’re moving in the right direction. He will have the opportunity to practice and hopefully play in (Sunday’s) game.”

Dolphins backup quarterback Jacoby Brissett, who went 0-3 while Tagovailoa was out, practiced on a limited basis Wednesday due to a nagging hamstring injury.

The Dolphins (1-4) have not won a game since Tagovailoa threw for 202 yards in a season-opening 17-16 victory over the New England Patriots.

On Sunday, the Dolphins will challenge the 0-5 Jaguars, who are the AFC’s only winless team.

The Jaguars have lost 20 consecutive games, which is the second-longest skid in NFL history.

Jacksonville, which lost to Miami 31-13 last year, is within reach of the NFL record for consecutive losses: 26, set by the 1976-1977 Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

“I can’t really wrap my head around that,” Jaguars running back James Robinson said of Jacksonville’s streak. “We’ve got to find a way to win.”

This Miami game might represent Jacksonville’s best chance to avoid eclipsing the Tampa Bay record, but Jaguars quarterback Trevor Lawrence insisted one thing.

“We don’t talk about the streak,” Lawrence said. “I don’t think it’s good to talk about that. You can’t get desperate. You have to continue to work.”

Lawrence, who led the Clemson Tigers past Tagovailoa’s Alabama Crimson Tide in the 2018 national championship game, has not found early success in the NFL. Lawrence is completing 59.4 percent of his passes for six touchdowns and with eight interceptions. He is averaging 229.2 yards per game.

Sunday’s game figures to be close, as the Dolphins are listed as 3 1/2-point favorites.

The Dolphins on offense are led by three solid targets in wide receivers DeVante Parker and rookie Jaylen Waddle and tight end Mike Gesicki. However, Parker is questionable due to shoulder and hamstring injuries.

In 12 career NFL games (11 starts), Tagovailoa is 7-4 while completing 63.2 percent of his passes for 12 touchdowns with six interceptions.

Miami’s running game has been poor as Myles Gaskin leads the team this year with just 167 yards.

Defensively, the Dolphins may have a concern at cornerback with Xavien Howard questionable due to shoulder and groin injuries. Howard has twice led the NFL in interceptions.

The Jaguars are much more potent than Miami while running the ball. Robinson has rushed for 387 yards, four touchdowns and a 5.8 average per carry. He is coming off a career-high 149-yard effort against the Tennessee Titans this past Sunday.

After totaling just 16 carries in his first two games this season, Robinson is now on pace for a 1,316-yard season. Last year, Robinson set an NFL record for most scrimmage yards by an undrafted rookie with 1,414.

Lawrence has also proven dangerous on the ground with 110 rushing yards and two touchdowns.

In the passing game, Laviska Shenault Jr. and Marvin Jones are the top two targets for Jacksonville. But Jones, who had a career-high 76 receptions last year with the Detroit Lions, did not practice on Wednesday due to personal reasons.

Defensively for the Jaguars, linebacker Myles Jack is questionable due to a back injury. He leads the team with 36 tackles.

–Field Level Media

Miami Dolphins Miami Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa (1) greets teammates before the start of the game against Indianapolis Colts during NFL game at Hard Rock Stadium Sunday in Miami Gardens.

Dolphins QB Tua Tagovailoa designated to return off IR

The Miami Dolphins designated quarterback Tua Tagovailoa to return from injured reserve on Tuesday.

Tagovailoa has been on IR since Sept. 25, six days after injuring his ribs in the Dolphins’ 35-0 loss to the Buffalo Bills.

The Dolphins won at New England in Week 1 but are off to a 1-4 start with the Jacksonville Jaguars (0-5) up next Sunday in London. Jacksonville has lost 20 consecutive games.

Jacoby Brissett replaced Tagovailoa as the starting quarterback and could still see action if the former first-round pick isn’t ready to play.

Brissett, however, played with a severe hamstring strain during Sunday’s 45-17 loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and was taken to the locker room on a cart before returning to the game.

Brissett, 28, was 27 of 39 passing for 275 yards, with two touchdowns and one interception against the Bucs.

Tagovailoa, 23, is 17 of 31 for 215 yards with one touchdown and one interception in two starts this season.

–Field Level Media

Miami Dolphins Miami Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa (1) greets teammates before the start of the game against Indianapolis Colts during NFL game at Hard Rock Stadium Sunday in Miami Gardens.

QB Tua Tagovailoa could return for Dolphins in London

Injured quarterback Tua Tagovailoa went through an on-field workout on Monday and could be back for the Miami Dolphins this week.

Head coach Brian Flores said Tagovailoa was impressive moving around the field and passing in his first extensive work since being sidelined with fractured ribs.

“I’ll see what the week of practice looks like,” Flores said of activating Tagovailoa from short-term injured reserve.

The Dolphins won at New England in Week 1 but are off to a 1-4 start with the Jacksonville Jaguars up next Sunday in London. Jacksonville has lost 20 consecutive games.

Jacoby Brissett replaced Tagovailoa as the starting quarterback and could still see action if Tagovailoa isn’t ready to play. Pain tolerance, Flores said, will be the main consideration when determining which quarterback will start.

Brissett, however, played with a severe hamstring strain during Sunday’s 45-17 loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and was taken to the locker room on a cart before returning to the game. Flores said Brissett’s status will be determined this week.

Brissett was 27-of-39 passing for 275 yards, with two touchdowns and one interception against the Bucs.

Tagovailoa hasn’t played since Week 2, when he left the field in the first quarter after taking a shot from Bills pass rusher A.J. Epenesa.

He completed 17 of 31 passes with one touchdown and one interception in two games this season.

–Field Level Media

Oct 10, 2021; Tampa, Florida, USA; Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady (12) throws the ball against the Miami Dolphins during the first half at Raymond James Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Tom Brady, Antonio Brown team to lead Bucs past Dolphins in 45-17 romp

Tom Brady passed for 411 yards and matched his season high of five touchdowns to lead the Tampa Bay Buccaneers to a 45-17 victory over the visiting Miami Dolphins on Sunday.

Antonio Brown caught seven passes for 124 yards and two scores and Mike Evans had six receptions for 113 yards and two touchdowns for Tampa Bay. Giovani Bernard also had a touchdown catch and Leonard Fournette tacked on a scoring run for the Buccaneers (4-1).

The 44-year-old Brady completed 30 of 41 passes while having 400 yards and five scoring passes in the same game for the first time in his 22-year career.

The performance continued Brady’s career-long success against Miami. He has accounted for 75 touchdowns (72 passing, three rushing) in 36 contests against the Dolphins.

Jacoby Brissett was 27-of-39 passing for 275 yards, two touchdowns and one interception for the Dolphins (1-4). Myles Gaskin caught two scoring passes for the second time in his career and collected a career-high 10 receptions while accumulating 99 total yards (74 receiving, 25 rushing).

Miami has dropped four consecutive games by an average of 19 points.

Tampa Bay outgained the Dolphins 558 to 301.

Brown also became the fastest player in NFL history to reach 900 career receptions. He reached the milestone in his 143rd game, topping Hall of Famer Marvin Harrison (149). Brown has 906 career catches.

Brown caught his two touchdown passes during the second quarter when the Buccaneers tallied 17 unanswered points.

Ryan Succop booted a 42-yard field goal in the opening minute of the second quarter to knot the score at 10.

Just over three minutes later, Tampa Bay went ahead as Brady found Brown on third-and-2 and the latter caught the ball just before midfield and broke loose for a 62-yard score.

The two struck again with 1:48 remaining in the half when Brown caught a 4-yarder from Brady to make it 24-10.

Miami pulled within seven when Brissett tossed a 1-yard scoring pass to Gaskin with 6:56 left in the third quarter.

Fournette scored on a 5-yard run on the first play of the fourth quarter to give the Buccaneers a 31-17 lead. Tampa Bay continued to pour it on as Brady threw touchdown passes of 34 and 22 yards to Evans over the next six minutes to make it a 28-point margin.

The Dolphins led 10-7 after the opening quarter, receiving a 23-yard field goal from Jason Sanders and a 24-yard touchdown pass from Brissett to Gaskin. Brady hit Bernard on a 10-yard touchdown in the stanza.

–Field Level Media

Miami Dolphins Miami Dolphins wide receiver DeVante Parker (11), can't come down with the ball in the end zone against Indianapolis Colts Indianapolis Colts cornerback Isaiah Rodgers (34), during NFL game at Hard Rock Stadium Sunday in Miami Gardens.

Dolphins WR DeVante Parker (hamstring) out vs. Bucs

Miami Dolphins wide receiver DeVante Parker was downgraded from doubtful to out for Sunday’s game against the host Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Parker has been dealing with a hamstring injury throughout the week. The Dolphins (1-3) are expected to lean on rookie Jaylen Waddle in addition to fellow receivers Preston Williams and Albert Wilson in Parker’s absence.

Parker, 28, has 17 receptions for a team-leading 242 yards and one touchdown in four games this season.

He led the Dolphins in receptions (63) and receiving yards (793) last season to go along with four touchdowns. He has 315 catches for 4,454 yards with 23 touchdowns since being selected by Miami with the 14th overall pick of the 2015 NFL Draft.

–Field Level Media