|Rams rally comes up short against Dolphins 17-14|
|Written by Admin|
|Sunday, 14 October 2012 13:02|
``I can make that kick,'' the St. Louis Rams rookie said. ``I just didn't come through.
The misfire came on the final play Sunday against the Miami Dolphins, who held on for a 17-14 win.
The Rams scored their lone touchdown with 8:30 left, then moved 49 yards to face a fourth-and-7 at the Miami 48-yard line with 30 seconds left.
Rather than go for a first down, coach Jeff Fisher sent out Zuerlein for an attempt that would have been an NFL record by 3 yards.
``The odds were much better for him to make the kick than us going for it,'' Fisher said. ``He's got that kind of leg.''
Zuerlein has made four kicks of 54 to 60 yards this season. The record attempt appeared to have enough distance but missed wide left, leaving both teams at 3-3.
Zuerlein made his first two field goals to improve to 15 for 15 this season, then missed three times in a row, including wide left from 52 and 37 yards in the first half.
``I didn't do my job, and I cost my team the game,'' he said.
The Dolphins endured dysfunction that took many forms, including a backward pass by Ryan Tannehill that flew out of bounds for a 7-yard loss. His offensive linemen managed to commit four penalties in a three-play span, while defensive breakdowns and replay overrules were recurring problems.
But Tannehill threw two touchdown passes and the Dolphins won despite being outgained 462 yards to 192.
``We had a lot of opportunities to win this game, but we didn't get it done,'' Fisher said. He lost to the team that courted him in January, when he chose the St. Louis job instead.
The Dolphins were outrushed 162-19, but Tannehill went 21 for 29 for 185 yards with no turnovers. He threw touchdown passes of 29 yards to Marlon Moore and 1 yard to Anthony Fasano.
``We know how football is played,'' Dolphins receiver Davone Bess said. ``It's not about statistics; it's about winning. Pretty, ugly, it doesn't matter. It's just about winning.''
Sam Bradford went 26 for 39 for 315 yards for the Rams, who struck for early gains of 44 and 65 yards.
``We've got to find a way to score touchdowns and not kick field goals,'' he said. ``That really hurt us at the end of the game.''
The Rams trailed 17-6 before they finally got into the end zone when Bradford scored on a 1-yard sneak on fourth down. He juggled the ball as he held it over the goal line, but the call was upheld following a review.
Bradford then hit Steven Jackson with the 2-point conversion pass to make the score 17-14.
Two other key reviews also went against the Dolphins. They led by 11 points and appeared on the verge of pulling away when they recovered a fumble by Bradford on a sack midway through the third quarter. But the turnover was negated by a review, when the officials ruled the play an incomplete pass.
On the Rams' next possession, Chris Givens lost a fumble after a short catch, but again the ruling was changed to an incompletion following a look at the replay.
Daryl Richardson's 44-yard run set up the Rams' first field goal, and Givens beat the Miami secondary deep for a 65-yard reception to set up another field goal for a 6-0 lead.
Moore, a backup who came into the game without a catch this season, put the Dolphins ahead to stay when he slipped behind Janoris Jenkins for a 29-yard touchdown catch.
Rams fullback Brit Miller fielded a short kickoff and lost a fumble, setting up a Miami field goal.
``It wasn't pretty,'' Tannehill said. ``It was pretty disappointing the way we played, especially in the first half. But we stuck together, hung in there and got it done.''
NOTES: Fisher and Dolphins general manager Jeff Ireland chatted on the sideline during pregame warmups. ... St. Louis averaged 6.0 yards per carry against the NFL's No. 1 rushing defense. ... Miami rookie reserve Olivier Vernon had two sacks, including one on the play before Zuerlein's final kick.
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