The Miami Dolphins knew Sunday it would be a tough task to go on the road and win in San Francisco against a still very good 49ers team.
They hung in for most of the day, but in the end, they were not up to the challenge, losing to the Niners 27-13 to fall to 5-8 on the season, and almost for sure out of any hopes of the playoffs.
The Dolphins lost for the fifth time in their past six games, giving the Niners a scare in the final quarter. Trailing by a touchdown, they marched to the San Francisco 35 and had a first down with 4:35 left to play, but quarterback Ryan Tannehill threw four consecutive incomplete passes, and the 49ers took over.
“You’ve got to make a play,” Dolphins guard Richie Incognito said. “We’ve got to move the ball. We couldn’t make a play when it counted.”
Tannehill completed just 17 of 33 passes for 150 yards and one touchdown, and the Dolphins were held to 17 points or less for the fourth time in their past five games.
Gore rushed for only 63 yards and one touchdown on 12 carries, but he reached two milestones. He rushed for his 50th career touchdown, a one-yard plunge in the third quarter, tying Roger Craig and Joe Perry for the San Francisco franchise record. He also cracked the 1,000-yard mark for the sixth time in his career with 1,035 yards and counting.
“It’s a blessing, where everybody says when you turn 29 you can’t do it no more,” Gore said. “When I got to 29 (on May 14), I told myself I was going to overcome that.”
Miami played a nice game, but as they are learning with a young team, it’s not enough to get the job done. Mistakes are hard to overcome in the NFL, and once the Fins overcome that, they will find they can play with anyone.