Miami Dolphins serve notice with beatdown of Patriots

*Everyone handed the AFC East to the New England Patriots before the season began. The Miami Dolphins served notice Sunday that it could be more interesting than that with a 33-20 victory over the Patriots on Sunday. Our takeaways: *

  1. Knowshon Moreno fittingly scored the game-sealing touchdown because he was the best player on the field. His 134 yards only tell part of the story. He ran like a man possessed and broke tackles on almost every snap. Lamar Miller started and was quite active (78 yards on 15 touches), but Moreno gives this running game a much different look.
  1. Cameron Wake and the Dolphins' defensive line absolutely terrorized Tom Brady throughout the second half. The Patriots gave up more sacks in the second half (four) than they gained first downs until a meaningless late drive. Brady was knocked down at least 10 times. Miami's defense took over after halftime.
  1. The Dolphins won the game despite three turnovers in the first half and a B- effort from Ryan Tannehill. Consider that a good thing. Miami outscored the Patriots 23-0 in the second half because its lines dominated on both sides of the ball.
  1. Offensive coordinator Bill Lazor's offense looks like a big upgrade. There were plenty of open receivers for Tannehill to throw to. Lazor comes from Philadelphia, where the running game truly leads the way.
  1. Brady was on point with his short passes early, but he was not accurate whatsoever deep. He missed a number of open receivers down the field. That's how he wound up with an ugly 3.8 yards per attempt to go along with two lost fumbles.
  1. Perhaps it's to be expected, but Rob Gronkowski did not look as fluid or explosive as usual in his return from surgery. He wound up with four catches for 40 yards and a score.
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