Rob Gronkowski had an apparent touchdown Sunday, but it was called back due to a penalty. Credit: Getty Images
How the Patriots' 27-17 victory over the Dolphins Sunday played out in real time:
1:02 p.m.EDT -No idea why any kick returner takes it out of the end zone, Miami’s Marcus Thigpen takes it to the 9.
1:05-3-and-out by the Dolphins but Tom Brady gives it right back with an interception (his fourth straight game with a pick). Even more worrisome, he keeps looking at his hand while Jim Nantz and Phil Simms wildly speculate about its health.
1:14-Pats can’t stop a high school style play where Ryan Tannehill rolls right then throws back against his body to a wide open Brandon Gibson for a 4-yard touchdown. Marquice Cole had no idea where he was going, he shouldn’t play on anything but special teams. New England really misses Aqib Talib among other injured defensive stars.
1:20-So Brady’s hand is obviously hurt, right? I say this as I watch a three-and-out, complete with a duck thrown to Gronk (who wasn’t open) double covered on the sideline.
1:28-Nice job by Tannehill to get Gibson hurt with a throw that forced him to take a big hit by Steve Gregory and he didn’t end up catching it anyway.
1:32-Patriots pick up their inaugural first down of the game with less than a minute left in the first quarter. That’s good right?
1:43-4th and inches, Daniel Thomas runs up the middle for 15 yards. This isn’t going well for the Patriots.
1:46-Simms helps us out by explaining why the crowd is sitting on their hands ... oh it’s because the Patriots are playing terrible. Thanks Phil!
1:47-Another high school rollout by Tannehill slices up the Pats defense for a 5-yard touchdown catch by Daniel Thomas. 14-0 Miami and this is really ugly. I don’t think New England could be playing much worse against an average team.
1:54-Can the Pats cut the crap and let Ridley start? I know he’s struggled this season but he is so much more explosive than Blount or Bolden.
1:56-And Sebastian Vollmer goes down screaming in pain, not sure what happened but he’s in plenty of pain. Yikes. He’s getting taken off on a cart which is never a good thing, just what the Pats don’t need: another injury to a key player. Marcus Cannon is in for him.
2:02-Pats benefit from a horrific pass interference call on the Dolphins. Gronk was triple teamed and they batted it down, I guess that’s not allowed?
2:04-3rd and 2, the Patriots can’t run it so obviously Josh McDaniels calls for a handoff to Bolden, a 1-yard loss. At least they finally scored on a 34-yard field goal by Stephen Gostkowski. Dolphins lead 14-3 late second quarter. Patriots have 67 total yards.
2:09-CBS really showed a picture of an executive producer going into the Texas Golf Hall of Fame. They tried to slide it in there, but seriously? Does anyone in the world but that guy’s family care one bit?
2:18-The wind was blowing hard and Caleb Sturgis’ 52-yard field goal swerved, but it still went through. It’s been that kind of first half for New England, 17-3 Dolphins.
2:20-I’ve never been more happy to see a first half of football end. Patriots trail 17-3 and they have 59 total yards of offense. How is that possible?
2:35-Fewest yards in a first half in 10 years for Brady. First play of the second half is a drop by Dobson ... sweet.
2:42-What do you know, somebody on New England made a play: 9-yard sack by Dont’a Hightower leads to a 46-yard field goal off the goalpost by Sturgis, no good.
2:45-23-yard run by Ridley. Keep giving him the ball!
2:48-23-yard catch by Gronkowski. Here we go.
2:49-Great double move by Dobson, a 14-yard touchdown catch and the Patriots are right back in it, down 17-10. 64-yard drive for New England and the first third quarter touchdown of the season for New England. Haha and it’s only Week 8.
2:54-Hello momentum swing. Logan Ryan forces a fumble that’s recovered by Rob Ninkovich at Miami’s 13.
2:56-Whole new ballgame, 2-yard touchdown run by Bolden ties it at 17.
3:00-20-yard catch by something called Rishard Matthews, Miami’s longest play of the game.
3:02-Matthews appeared to have made a catch on the sideline for a first down but he was ruled out. Joe Philbin has never lost a challenge this season, so apparently he didn’t want to risk his perfect record.
3:10-Wow, Ryan nearly had another pick-six. Tannehill threw it right to him in stride going the other way.
3:13-Underthrow by Brady and pushoff by Dobson leads to a 26-yard catch by Dobson, just like they drew it up.
3:15-Second time today the Patriots have benefited from a bogus call on the Dolphins. This time phantom holding.
3:16-Ugh, holding on Nate Solder negates an awesome 30-yard touchdown catch by Gronkowski.
3:19-Not a great throw by Brady but Amendola needs to make that catch. You know Welker would have caught it (haha, well maybe). 48-yard field goal by Gostkowski gives New England its first lead 20-17.
3:21-Patriots up 20-17 after three quarters, my how things have changed in one quarter after New England outscored Miami 17-0. The Dolphins can’t do anything right at the moment. Sound familiar?
3:28-If the play stands, I take back everything negative I ever said about Cole. McCourty deflected the ball back inbounds and Cole appeared to get two feet down for the interception. It is under review. It stands and Philbin was so impressed that he clapped for it.
3:31-Typical meltdown by Miami, 19-yard run by Blount.
3:33-4th and 4, Brady runs for 8 yards. Wait, what?
3:35-I guess these refs have been watching the World Series, pretty sure they just made up a new call: Miami forced a fumble then a defensive lineman batted it forward as they tried to recover. That resulted in a 10-yard penalty on them and New England retained possession. What the hell?
3:39-3-yard touchdown run by Ridley should seal it, 27-17 Patriots. 24-0 run by New England.
3:47-For once, Simms makes a good point: Tannehill should run way more since he’s not a great passer.
3:49-Sack by Ryan, Pats might have found something with the rookie cornerback. He’s been really good the last two weeks.
3:52-Mike Wallace finally starts to earn his ridiculous paycheck with a 25-yard catch and run on 3rd and 23.
3:54-That’ll do Miami, that’ll do. Rob Ninkovich sacks Tannehill on third down, then Chandler Jones blocks a 39-yard field goal attempt by Sturgis.
4:07-Duron Harmon catches the easiest interception of the season and also the first of his NFL career. Game over, Patriots win 27-17 to improve to 6-2. What a second half after a dreadful first half, it’s hard to remember a bigger turnaround than that in one game. The Pats host Pittsburgh next week in another very winnable game.
Follow Metro Boston sports writer Richard Slate on Twitter:@RichSlate