The Miami Dolphins didn’t erase any doubts about their intentions of tanking this season after a 59-10 Week 1 loss to Baltimore on Sunday
The Miami Dolphins, with a new coaching staff and a new quarterback, were expected to be among the NFL’s worst teams this season. In Week 1 against Baltimore, those expectations were met.
Miami suffered a 59-10 blowout loss to the Ravens at home on Sunday to open the 2019 season, the worst defeat in franchise history.
Nothing about the Dolphins’ game plan worked. Quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick, signed to a two-year deal in the offseason and named the starter over Josh Rosen, completed less than half of his passes and was sacked twice. Rosen replaced him at the end of the third quarter and threw an interception on his second attempt.
The offensive line, which lost stalwart Laremy Tunsil to a trade in the preseason, gave up 12 quarterback hits as Fitzpatrick and Rosen were pressured all game long by the Ravens defense. Leading rusher Kenyan Drake gained only 12 yards on four carries. Miami turned the ball over three times, held the ball for less than 20 minutes compared to Baltimore’s 40, and committed nine penalties for 64 yards.
The Ravens, meanwhile, drove down the field with ease against the Dolphins defense. Quarterback Lamar Jackson threw for a career-high 324 yards and five touchdowns, four in just the first half. Mark Ingram gained 107 yards on 14 carries and found the end zone twice, while rookie receiver Marquise Brown gained 147 yards, all in the first half. The Ravens scored touchdowns on six of their first seven possessions and led 42-10 by halftime.
The 42 points against are the most the Dolphins have allowed in the first half since 2007 against the New England Patriots. The 59 points allowed is a new franchise worst and the first time they’ve allowed an opponent to score 50 or more in a regular-season game since Week 3 of 1986 against the New York Jets.
It was an inglorious debut for head coach Brian Flores, but one that should’ve been expected. The Dolphins were already in a rebuilding mode before they traded away receiver Kenny Stills and their best offensive lineman, Tunsil, to the Houston Texans. They then traded Kiko Alonso, the team’s leading tackler two of the past three seasons, to the Saints.
The quarterback situation remains unsettled, with neither Fitzpatrick or Rosen laying claim to it on Sunday. Their offensive line provided little protection, their defense no more than spectators against the Ravens’ offensive weapons.
The good news for the Dolphins is that they have two first-round picks in both 2020 and 2021, allowing the team to replenish their roster over the next few years. That was little consolation on Sunday, and the best thing that the Dolphins fans can take away from the game is that there’s one down and only 15 to go because they get the opportunity to draft Oregon’s Justin Herbert or Alabama’s Tua Tagovailoa.