Dolphins secondary vs. Redskins wide receivers
Who won: Dolphins.
Impact: Two timely interceptions — one early by Brent Grimes and an acrobatic one by Brice McCain — kept the Redskins’ passing game from doing too much damage. Grimes made a great play on his takeaway in the first quarter, jumping a route on a hurried pass for an interception that set up the Dolphins near the red zone. McCain came up with the most highlight-worthy play in the fourth quarter. While batting Pierre Garcon, McCain tipped the ball and secured it with one hand for an interception as he was falling out of bounds.
Dolphins special teams vs. Redskins special teams
Who won: Dolphins
Impact: Jarvis Landry’s 69-yard punt return was the decisive score. But for at least one week, it appears the team’s overhaul of its kicking game might end up being the right decision. Following stellar efforts in the preseason, the Dolphins elected to go with two rookies — kicker Andrew Franks and punter Matt Darr — and cut former Pro Bowl punter Brandon Fields and inconsistent kicker Caleb Sturgis. Darr averaged 43.5 yards per punt on four attempts, including a 63-yard effort. He also once pinned the Redskins inside the 20. Franks made a 22-yard field goal and converted both extra points.
Dolphins offensive line vs. Redskins defense
Who won: Redskins.
Impact: Although they found some rhythm late, the Dolphins struggled to consistently run the football until late in the game and had a hard time protecting quarterback Ryan Tannehill for most of the first three quarters. Tannehill was sacked three times and hurried four more. One of the sacks resulted in a fumble that cost the Dolphins a promising scoring chance in the third quarter when they still trailed 10-7. The Dolphins finished with only 74 yards rushing.