CHICAGO (CBSMiami) – The result wasn’t good and the second half wasn’t pretty, but the Miami Dolphins looked their best when it counted most.
Miami’s starters on both offense and defense played extremely well but the reserve players faltered as the Dolphins lost to the Chicago Bears 27-10 in each team’s first preseason game of 2015.
Ryan Tannehill led Miami on a touchdown drive on their first possession of the game, despite a pair of holding penalties against the offensive line.
Tannehill finished 6-of-7, throwing for 56-yards and a touchdown. His performance was good enough for a passer rating of 139.6.
Lamar Miller had a couple nice runs, including a 27-yard gallop in which he burst into the second level in a hurry.
Jarvis Landry came away with the Dolphins lone touchdown on a nice 4th down play from the 2-yard line.
The first team defense was just as impressive, holding the Bears to a three and out on their opening drive.
Though he only played seven snaps, Ndamukong Suh looked just as good as he has during training camp.
Suh led a defensive front that gave the Bears all kinds of problems while it was on the field.
Linebackers Jordan Tripp and Chris McCain both suffered lower body injuries. Tripp was seen on the sidelines during the second half in a walking boot and using crutches, but McCain seemed fine.
Several rookies played well for Miami.
Defensive lineman Jordan Phillips looked good during his time on the field, as did linebackers Mike Hull and Zach Vigil.
Rookie cornerback Bobby McCain made a couple nice plays in the first half but was also called for holding three separate times.
The penalties in general were a big problem for the Dolphins, as they have been throughout training camp. Miami’s 12 penalties cost the team 80 yards.
It will certainly be a point of emphasis for Miami’s coaching staff before their next preseason game in Carolina.
Quarterback McLeod Bethel-Thompson made a very nice throw to start his night but his play quickly deteriorated. He threw back-to-back interceptions that set up the Bears deep in Dolphins territory, and both times Chicago converted them into points.
Miami turned the ball over on three consecutive drives in the second half, two coming on the Bethel-Thompson picks and the third on a fumble by running back Mike Gillislee after a long run.
Josh Freeman finished the game as Miami’s quarterback and didn’t fare much better than Bethel-Thompson, though he did lead the Dolphins on a drive that stalled inside the Bears 10-yard-line.
Freeman ended the game with a badly overthrown ball that was intercepted.
The Dolphins return to the practice field on Saturday and will spend three days at the team training facility before heading north for a few joint practices with the Carolina Panthers before the teams battle in preseason game number two.
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