Cincinnati, Ohio. Kickoff at Paycor Stadium started at 8:15 EST. An unforgettable Thursday night matchup between the Cincinnati Bengals and the Miami Dolphins. The Cincinnati Bengals came into the matchup looking fresh. It was the first time ever that the Bengals used white helmets. The addition of the helmets seemed to have an effect on the fans. The crowd at Paycor Stadium tonight was the largest in Cincinnati Bengals history. Bengals fans were giving the Dolphins offense a hard time until deep into the fourth quarter.
The Cincinnati Bengals had a record of 1-3 entering the game, while the Miami Dolphins were undefeated with a record of 3-0. The game itself had its moments of ups and downs from the start to the end. A heavily fought contest between both sides, resulting in a 27-15 victory for the Cincinnati Bengals. Sadly, the loss was not the only devastation the Dolphins experienced tonight.
Tua Tagovailoa was sent to the Hospital on Thursday Night
Late into the second quarter, Miami Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa was sacked. The sack seemed to incidentally result in Tagovailoa going into critical condition with a head and neck injury. He was carried out of Paycor Stadium in a stretcher, and was quickly taken to the University of Cincinnati Medical Center.
The opposing Bengals crowd appeared to show remorse for the fallen quarterback. In showing solidarity with the Dolphins team, the crowd chanted “Tua! Tua!. An action that in of itself demonstrates the unity the game of football brings, even though the Dolphins were on different sides of the field. This gives me hope that there is a capacity for compassion in each of us. For the sake of humanity, it is important to look at moments similar to what happened at Paycor Stadium that night.
Fortunately, later on in the night, Tagovailoa began to feel his senses again, and was discharged from the hospital. Before exiting the game, Tagovailoa threw for 8 completions out of 14 attempts.
Miami Dolphins after the Departure of Tagovailoa
Without Tagovailoa, the Dolphins had to bring in backup quarterback Teddy Bridgewater to finish out the game. Bridgewater ended up throwing 14 completions out of 23 attempts. Despite the loss of Tagovailoa, Tyreek Hill was able to pull in 10 receptions for 160 yards.
Overall, Tagovailoa loss could have negative consequences for the Dolphins in the upcoming games. It is to be seen whether Teddy Bridgewater can throw as successfully as Tagovailoa. This can, in turn, limit the chances of Tyreek Hill or Jaylen Waddle getting the ball, and will make it hard for the Dolphins to be successful offensively in future games.
Cincinnati’s Bengals Offense against the Dolphins
The Bengals offense appeared to show strength in numerous areas. Both Bengals receivers Tee Higgins and Ja’Marr Chase had great games. The Bengals Quarterback Joe Burrow was able to consistently throw the football against the Dolphins. Burrow threw for 287 yards and 2 touchdowns. The Bengals passing offense seemed to be more in sync against the Dolphins compared to games earlier on in the season.
However, the rushing side of the offense was ineffective in producing yards per carry. At the end of the game, Bengals starting running back Joe Mixon rushed for only 2 yards per carry. Although Mixon scored a touchdown early in the game to help the Bengals out.
Nonetheless, why is the rushing game so ineffective? Many football analysts blame the offensive line for causing this issue. These analysts blamed the offensive line that were acquired during the past offseason. This opinion was brought up in past games against the Steelers and the Cowboys.
However, in defense of the offensive line, I would say that they are progressing. The offensive line is giving Joe Burrow plenty of more time to throw the football.
Overall, both the Dolphins and Bengals played remarkably on the Thursday night game in Cincinnati. It is unforeseen circumstances that lead to the injury of Tagovailoa. In order for the Dolphins to remain dominant in the NFL, they are going to have to develop a new strategy to compensate for the loss of Tagovailoa.
The Bengals, on the other hand, need to establish a better running game if they want a chance to win the superbowl. I do think it might take time for the offensive line to adjust to the offensive scheme established by the Bengals.
I do predict both teams will continue to be a havoc against other teams in the NFL. Although I don’t know what will happen in the future. Perhaps, both teams will lose the rest of their games. Or we might see the Bengals and Dolphins clash one more time in the playoffs. What we do know is that the Thursday night game in Cincinnati will be remembered.
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