Missed FGs help Dolphins edge Rams 17-14


Missed FGs help Dolphins edge Rams 17-14

MIAMI (AP) Along the Miami Dolphins' sideline, players tracked the flight of the ball, leaning and twisting and hoping as they tried to influence its flight.

The kick sailed wide to end the game, and the Dolphins' celebration began. Field goal defense was one thing they did well Sunday, when they somehow held off the St. Louis Rams 17-14.

The Dolphins were outplayed for much of the game and outgained 462 yards to 192. They managed only 19 yards rushing, and their top-ranked run defense gave up 162 yards.

But Rams rookie Greg Zuerlein missed three field goal attempts, including a desperation 66-yarder on the final play.

``If you look at the stat sheet, you'd be surprised that we came out on top,'' Miami coach Joe Philbin said.

The victory left the Dolphins at 3-3 and in a four-way tie for the AFC East lead heading into their bye week.

The Rams missed a chance at their first three-game winning streak since 2006, and instead fell to 3-3 under coach Jeff Fisher. He lost to the team that courted him in January, when he chose the St. Louis job instead.

``We had a lot of opportunities to win this game,'' Fisher said, ``but we didn't get it done.''

The Rams scored their lone touchdown with 8 1/2 minutes 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, Fisher sent out Zuerlein to try a kick that would have been an NFL record by 3 yards.

The attempt appeared to have enough distance but missed wide left.

``I can make that kick. I just didn't come through,'' Zuerlein said. ``I came across the ball a little bit. I should have made it.''

He has been successful four times from 54 to 60 yards this season.

``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 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.

Another rookie, Miami's Ryan Tannehill, went 21 for 29 for 185 yards with no turnovers. The rookie threw touchdown passes of 29 yards to Marlon Moore and 1 yard to Anthony Fasano.

Sam Bradford went 26 for 39 for 315 yards for the Rams, who struck for early gains of 44 and 65 yards. At halftime, St. Louis had outgained Miami 294-99 but trailed 10-6.

``We've got to find a way to score touchdowns and not kick field goals,'' Bradford said. ``That really hurt us.''

The Rams were down 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.

``A lot of real close calls,'' Fisher said. ``Difficult, under-the-hood calls to make. But they got them right.''

NOTES: Fisher and Dolphins general manager Jeff Ireland chatted on the sideline during pregame warm-ups. ... 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. ... The Dolphins pulled off a fake punt to sustain a drive with four minutes left. ... The Rams still haven't won in Miami since Oct. 3, 1976.


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Wizards Tipoff podcast: Should Bradley Beal be an All-NBA selection?


Wizards Tipoff podcast: Should Bradley Beal be an All-NBA selection?

On the latest episode of the Wizards Tipoff podcast presented by Greenberg and Bederman, host Chase Hughes was joined by guest co-host Travis Thomas to break down Bradley Beal's All-NBA chances and John Wall's injury rehab.

They also discussed the crazy Eastern Conference playoff race, Trae Young's draft stock and essentials for a good snow day.

You can listen to the episode right here:

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Caps prospect watch: Signing season?


Caps prospect watch: Signing season?

The 2018 NCAA Hockey Tournament bracket has been announced and only one Capitals prospect, Brian Pinho, is still in the running.

Providence College was selected as the No. 2 seed in the East Regional and will play No. 3 Clarkson in the first round on Friday, March 23 on ESPNU. The winner will play the winner of Notre Dame-Michigan Tech on Saturday with a chance to advance to the Frozen Four.

The college season is over for the rest of the Capitals' college prospects which begs the question, will any of them sign an entry-level deal with Washington?

In the spring when seasons end for colleges, junior leagues and European leagues, we see a flurry of signings across the NHL as teams sign their prospects and young free agents.

Among the Caps' college prospects, the most likely candidate to sign would be Shane Gersich. Gersich just wrapped up this third season at the University of North Dakota, finishing second on the team in goals (13) and tied for third in points (29). The Capitals will certainly make a push to sign him considering his talent and because if he returns to college for a fourth year, he stands to become a free agent on Aug. 15, 2019.

Brad Elliott Schlossman of the Grand Forks Herald reported Wednesday that North Dakota was still awaiting Gersich's decision on whether he planned to return to college.

Quinnipiac defenseman Chase Priskie is in a similar situation, but it he has decided to head back to school for another season.

“That wasn’t a season I’d want to leave on,” Priskie told the New Haven Register. “When I came here as a freshman I saw our senior class, Garteig, St. Denis, Soren Jonzzon, and they left such a legacy that guys still talk about them. Same for Sam Anas and Devon Toews. They were all such great players and some of the best people for our program. When I leave, I want to be talked about like they are.”


Other prospect notes:

  • For Pinho, now a senior at Providence, this marks an opportunity for him to finish his college career the same way he began, with a national championship. “I don’t think I realized at the time how hard it is just to get back to the tournament,” Pinho told the New Haven Register. “So that’s something we older guys have been telling the younger guys. You never know when you’re going to be back and you have to make the most of it when you’re there.” (You can read the full feature on Pinho here)
  • The end of the season may suddenly be near for goalie prospect Ilya Samsonov. Metallurg Magnitogorsk finds itself down 3-1 in its series with Ak Bars in the KHL playoffs meaning their season could be over as early as Friday. Of course, the big news to watch after that is whether or not Samsonov would come to North America. If he does, he would most likely go to Hershey to play for the Bears. With only 10 games remaining on Hershey's schedule, however, the sooner Samsonov's team is ousted from the playoffs, the better. At least from a Washington perspective.
  • All three of Washington's WHL prospects have reached the WHL playoffs. Moose Jaw (Dmitriy Zaitsev) finished with the best record in the league and will play Prince Albert in the first round. Swift Current (Beck Malenstyn) finished second in the East Division behind Moose Jaw and will play Regina. Everett (Garrett Pilon) won the U.S. Division and earned the top seed in the Western Conference. They will play Seattle in the first round.
  • Dmitriy Zaitsev remains out after taking an illegal hit last week. He did not play in either of Moose Jaw's final regular season games, but was a full participant in practice on Wednesday.
  • Adam Carlson has found his groove in Kansas City. Playing for the Mavericks of the ECHL, he won each of his two starts this past week allowing only one goal on 43 shots. He was named the 2nd star of the game for both games.
  • Madison Bowey recorded an assist on Friday and two more for Hershey on Saturday for three over the weekend in his first week back with the Bears. Bowey has spent the majority of the season with the Caps, but the additions of Michal Kempny and Jakub Jerabek at the trade deadline meant there were just too many bodies up in Washington and not enough playing time to go around. As Bowey is waiver exempt, he became the odd-man out and was sent to the AHL. It would not be surprising to see him recalled by Washington when the NHL playoffs begin.
  • Defenseman Jonas Siegenthaler brought his goal total up to five for the season with two goals against the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins on Monday. The Bears really wanted to emphasize his offensive game this season to see if Siegenthaler could be developed into a two-way player. His strength is definitely is on the defensive end of the ice, but he will be a more versatile player if he can also be a threat offensively as well. You can see the highlights of Siegenthaler's two-goal game here:

  • Forward Hampus Gustafsson was recalled to Hershey last week and did not wait long to make an impact. He scored his first career AHL goal on Friday. He also added an assist making that game his first career multi-point game as well.
  • Tyler Lewington was suspended two games by the AHL for a punch he delivered to Bridgeport's Scott Eansor in Friday's game.

Who are the Caps' top 10 prospects? Find out here in this week's updated rankings