Thanks, Charles Clay.
The Dolphins still have a playoff pulse because of you.
Clay, wide open by some 25 yards in the end zone, dropped a game-winning, fourth-down touchdown pass, helping the Dolphins survive the Bills 21-17 Sunday.
Granted, it was an under-thrown pass by Josh Allen, but Clay — who began his career with the Dolphins before signing a big contract with the Bills, had the time and position to make the play.
The win lifted the Dolphins to 6-6, and kept them a game behind the Ravens for the sixth seed in the AFC. The Bills fell to 4-8.
The Dolphins had next to no offense — they were out-gained 415-175 — but made enough plays to somehow win.
Two of those plays: a pair of interceptions by Xavien Howard.
The Bills led for the first time after the Bills eventually converted a poorly thrown deep pass by Ryan Tannehill into a touchdown. Micah Hyde picked off the deep pass down the left side. Seven plays and 83 yards later, the Bills were in the end zone, courtesy of a 25-yard touchdown pass from Josh Allen to Zay Jones.
But the Dolphins didn’t panic. Their dormant offense woke up, and thanks to a taunting penalty by Jordan Phillips, reached the red zone for just the third time.
That’s when Kenny Stills had his catch of the year. Despite being bracked by Hyde and Jordan Poyer, he stole a 13-yard touchdown pass. It was particularly sweet for Stills, who had all but vanished from the team’s game plan over the last two months, prompting him to say Thursday, “I can’t throw the ball to myself.”
Still, the Dolphins needed to make stops.
They got a huge one my Robert Quinn, whose strip-sack on third-and-long made for a very long field goal attempt. Stephen Hauschka hooked the 55-yarder, the lead remained 21-17.
The Dolphins scored touchdowns on their first and last drives of the first half, both Ryan Tannehill passes.
DeVante Parker went up and snatched the first one across the middle, accounting for his first touchdown of the season. It went for 18 yards.
Kenyan Drake caught the second one, leaking out of the backfield from 3 yards out.
In between, Josh Allen connected with Zay Jones for a score, but a missed extra point gave the Dolphins an eight-point halftime lead.