DALLAS (CBSMiami.com) – The Miami Dolphins came into Thursday’s game against the Dallas Cowboys as one of the hottest teams in pro football. But, after questionable play calling and an inability to punch it into the end zone, the Dolphins left Dallas looking at a 3-8 record.
The Dolphins arguably outplayed the Cowboys throughout the game. However, much like the rest of the season, the Dolphins seemed to grab defeat from the jaws of victory.
Dolphins quarterback Matt Moore threw for 288 yards, which was the third best passing day of his entire NFL career. Brandon Marshall also caught five passes for 103 yards and a touchdown and Reggie Bush put in 61 tough rushing yards, but it still wasn’t enough.
The Dolphins defense, which hadn’t allowed a touchdown in 13 quarters, finally surrendered a touchdown in the second quarter of the game.
Dallas would add another touchdown in the fourth quarter to lead the Dolphins by a point.
Then, Moore was given the football and over a 14 play, 76 yard drive it appeared that the Dolphins would be in position to put away the Cowboys. But, the Fins got deep into the red zone and as they have so many times this season, had to settle for a field goal instead of a touchdown to lead 19-17.
At that point, Dolphins fans had a good idea of what was coming.
Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo picked apart the Fins’ pass defense using tight end Jason Witten; and Cowboys running back DeMarco Murray had his way through any defender in his path.
Dallas drove the ball 54 yards in just 2:59 to set up a game-winning field goal from the 18-yard-line of the Dolphins.
Dallas’ kicker, Dan Bailey, has been lights out all season and he turned the lights out on the Dolphins by nailing the kick from 28 yards away.
It was an anemic offensive performance that didn’t match the defensive effort through much of the game.
Cornerbacks Vontae Davis and Sean Smith each had an interception in the game and middle linebacker Kevin Burnett had 11 tackles in the game.
Outside linebacker Cameron Wake had four tackles and a sack while spending much of the game in the Dallas backfield.
But, one missed field goal by backup kicker Shayne Graham helped give the Cowboys a victory.
Both teams were positively bad on third down in the game. The Cowboys went 3-12 on third down in the game, while the Cowboys went 2-9.
The Fins outgained the Dolphins by a 352-303 yard margin, but the Fins couldn’t stop the Cowboys when it counted the most at the end of the fourth quarter.
The Fins have a week off after playing three games in eleven days. The team returns to the field on December 4th at Sun Life Stadium against the Oakland Raiders. Kickoff is set for 1 p.m. for the Raiders game.