(The Sports Xchange) – Jay Cutler threw three touchdown passes as the double-digit underdog Miami Dolphins upset the New England Patriots 27-20 on Monday night at Hard Rock Stadium.
Jarvis Landry caught two of Cutler’s TD throws. After his second touchdown grab, he celebrated by pretending to inflate the football — perhaps mocking New England quarterback Tom Brady’s “Deflategate” issues.
Cutler completed 25 of 38 passes for 263 yards. Kenyan Drake led Miami’s ground game with 114 yards on 25 carries. It was the second straight 100-yard game for Drake, who also had five receptions for 79 yards.
The Patriots (10-3), who visit the 11-2 Pittsburgh Steelers on Sunday in what was looking like a battle for home-field advantage throughout the AFC playoffs, may have been caught looking ahead. Their eight-game win streak was snapped.
Brady got off to a poor start, missing all four of his first-quarter passes. He completed 24 of 43 passes for 233 yards and one touchdown, but he was intercepted twice, both times by cornerback Xavien Howard.
Before Monday, Brady had just four interceptions all season and never more than one in a game.
Miami (6-7) compiled an impressive 123-2 yardage advantage after one quarter but led just 6-0. The Dolphins scored on field goals of 30 and 44 yards by Cody Parkey. The first field goal was the result of a 13-play, 69-yard dive. The second was set up by an interception by Howard.
New England got untracked in the second quarter, taking a 7-6 lead on a 3-yard run by Rex Burkhead.
On the next possession, Miami drove 80 yards in seven plays and took a 13-7 lead on a 5-yard touchdown pass from Cutler to Landry.
New England closed its deficit to 13-10 on a 46-yard field goal by Stephen Gostkowski with two seconds left in the first half.
Miami extended its advantage to 20-10 when Jakeem Grant made a spectacular, leaping, 25-yard touchdown catch, crashing to the turf in the end zone.
The Dolphins closed the third-quarter scoring with Landry’s 4-yard reception for a 27-10 lead.
New England crept closer as Brady’s 3-yard touchdown pass to James White cut the deficit to 27-17 with 13:05 to play.
The Patriots, who had a first-and-goal at the Miami 1-yard line late in the fourth quarter, had to settle for a 33-yard Gostkowski field goal after getting hit with illegal-shift and holding penalties.
Trailing 27-20, New England failed to recover an onside kick, sealing the win for Miami.