Josh Rosen plays into fourth in first Dolphins action

In the first round of the battle for the Dolphins' starting quarterback job, Ryan Fitzpatrick and Josh Rosen seemed to be relatively even with a scoring drive apiece mixed with questionable results.

Then Rosen found a groove with a late first-half drive and carried his hot hand into a second-half march, culminating a night in which he orchestrated three scores and ended his Miami debut, a 34-27 Dolphins victory, on an encouraging note.

The former Cardinals first-round pick who was traded to South Beach during the 2019 NFL Draft, Rosen saw far more playing time on Thursday night as his Dolphins debut saw him play all of the second and third quarters and carry into the fourth.

Getting the start, Fitzpatrick played the Dolphins' first two drives, led them to three points and went 2-for-5 for 20 yards with no turnovers.

Rosen saw far more action, piloting Miami all the way through the first drive of the fourth stanza, his night equating to 17 points, one big turnover and a 13-of-20 showing for 191 yards with two sacks and a 75.2 QB rating.

"They both managed the huddle pretty well," first-year coach Brian Flores said at halftime on the Dolphins' broadcast.

Making his coaching debut, Flores saw Fitzpatrick look very much the veteran, showing his poise in and out of the pocket. The journeyman showed he still has a strong arm and some spring is still left in his step following a nice scramble out of trouble to open the game. Fitzpatrick engineered an opening drive that equated to three points off a Jason Sanders boot.

On the third drive, Rosen took over and marched the Dolphins 71 yards for a touchdown, coming via a dive over the top by running back Kalen Ballage, who likewise is competing for a starting spot with Kenyon Drake. Rosen appeared rattled and rushed at times, but eventually settled in.

Then came the negative on the ensuing drive when he was picked off by Atlanta's Jermaine Grace.

"Obviously, I don't like the turnover from Josh," Flores said.

With just more than a minute to go in the first half, Rosen drove the Dolphins 75 yards, completing three of five passes for 71 yards on a venture that concluded with a field goal. Not done there, Rosen came back out in the second half and led another TD drive, completing all three of his passes for 49 yards.

Fitzpatrick got the start Thursday, but Rosen was given ample time and it would seem the second-year slinger is very much being bestowed the opportunity to win the starting spot.

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