Last week the Dolphins suffered a huge loss to the Colts in Indy to put a major mark on their wishes to make the postseason in the AFC.
Sunday against the Titans, they were punched in the mouth, pushing even further their shot of going to the postseason.
The Fins were smothered by the Titans defense, falling badly 37-3 for their worst loss of the season. It was a loss that came out of nowhere if you talk to the Dolphins about it.
“I didn’t really see signs of this coming,” coach Joe Philbin said. “Obviously we need to do better, and it starts with me.”
Miami was the victim of four turnovers, and three of the four turnovers were picks at the hands of Dolphins rookie QB Ryan Tannehill.
There was also the benchings by Philbin that seemed to shake some heads during the game.
Reggie Bush spent most of the first half on the sideline after his early fumble, and guard Richie Incognito sat briefly after committing a costly personal foul penalty.
“It was a dumb mistake on my part,” Incognito said.
“I was benched, and I deserved it,” Bush said. “If I’m a coach, I would have benched myself too.”
Tannehill’s six-week streak without an interception ended at 107 passes when Akeem Ayers deflected a throw to Colin McCarthy, who sprinted along the sideline to score for a 21-0 lead. McCarthy had just returned to the game after he aggravated a lingering ankle injury.
“I just needed to settle down a little bit,” he said. “I got turned a little bit. I just had to take a couple plays off, but I got back in there.”
Tannehill went 23 for 39 but had a passer rating of only 42.4. What did the rookie learn?
“Don’t throw it to the other team,” Philbin said.
It was the Fins worst loss since 1968, and shows that just maybe this team isn’t as good as some think they are, and that they have a long, long way to go.
The Titans didn’t commit a turnover after totaling five a week ago, while they had an interception from each starting linebacker — McCarthy, Ayers and Zach Brown.
“That was fun to see,” Titans coach Mike Munchak said.
The tone was established early, when Jason McCourty recovered a fumble by Bush at the Dolphins’ 28, and Tennessee converted the turnover into a touchdown.
It was that type of day for the Dolphins.