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Here were some of the comments that stood out after the 35-9 victory against the Denver Broncos, along with some perspective:
— Tight end Julius Thomas was happy that the Dolphins not only were able to end their losing streak, they did it in convincing fashion with their most decisive victory since Oct. 18, 2015. It was a victory convincing enough that backup quarterback David Fales finished off the game while Jay Cutler was standing on the sideline with a baseball hat on. All four of the Dolphins’ previous victories came in one-score games, so this indeed was a refreshing change.
“It just takes sacrifice to let somebody else get free to block the punt. That play I was able to get a sacrifice from other people and I was able to block the punt.”
— Terrence Fede’s punt block was part of a huge day for the Dolphins special teams, but the fourth-year defensive end was quick to give credit to his teammates. The truth is there were just so many great performances on special teams, from punter Matt Haack to returner Jakeem Grant, to Fede, to the guys doing the blocking up front.
— Head Coach Adam Gase had every reason to be happy with the performance of cornerback Xavien Howard, who came up with his first two regular season interceptions, one of which he returned for a touchdown. Howard also helped the Dolphins hold Broncos wide receivers Demaryius Thomas and Emmanuel Sanders to a combined four catches for 38 yards. Part of that had to do with some protection issues and the struggles of Denver quarterback Trevor Siemian, but there’s no taking away from what was Howard’s best NFL game so far.
— Kenyan Drake was given a full workload against Denver and he handled the assignment with flying colors. Because he never was a full-time back at Alabama, there were some questions about Drake’s durability, but he certainly answered those with his 23-carry outing. Drake also was effective, though that wasn’t in question after what he has shown the past two seasons.
— Defensive tackle Jordan Phillips offered a simple explanation as to why he’s been playing better football in recent weeks. Phillips made several big plays against Denver on Sunday, including a sack, a pass defensed, and two tackles for loss. Philips’ emergence this season has given the Dolphins a nice group of young defensive tackles, along with rookies Davon Godchaux and Vincent Taylor.