Miami Dolphins

Miami Dolphins’ secondary is primary in victory over Oakland Raiders

Miami Dolphins' Brent Grimes celebrates after scoring a touchdown during the second half of an NFL football game against the Oakland Raiders, Sunday, Sept. 28, 2014, at Wembley Stadium in London.
Miami Dolphins' Brent Grimes celebrates after scoring a touchdown during the second half of an NFL football game against the Oakland Raiders, Sunday, Sept. 28, 2014, at Wembley Stadium in London. AP

Brent Grimes and his buddies sure know how to break out of a slump.

The Dolphins’ secondary, which went without an interception in the season’s first three weeks, was responsible for turnovers on three consecutive possessions to open the second half Sunday.

First, Grimes had a pick that led to a Lamar Miller touchdown. Then Cortland Finnegan recovered a fumble and raced 50 yards for a touchdown (Miami’s first such score since 2010). Finally, Jimmy Wilson got into the act with a pick of his own.

“Eventually the plays will come,” Grimes said. “[The defensive linemen] were harassing them all day. Doing that, that allows us to make plays, and that’s what we did.”

For the most part.

Will Davis, the Dolphins’ third corner, struggled in coverage and was eventually pulled for Jamar Taylor.

Minor injuries

It’s a good thing the game ended when it did. The Dolphins were out of spare offensive linemen. Both Branden Albert (shoulder) and Samson Satele (leg) left the game in the fourth quarter.

Neither injury appeared serious afterwards. Satele said he could have returned, if needed and Albert said he was fine.

a bit error-prone

Dion Sims picked the best possible time to have his worst NFL series. The Dolphins led by 31 in the third quarter and looked to go up even more when Sims made two drive-sabotaging errors.

He committed offensive pass interference on Daniel Thomas’ would-be touchdown catch, and then allowed a Ryan Tannehill pass to bounce off his hands and into the grasp of Raiders corner T.J. Carrie.

While the game was still in question, however, Sims made a tremendous catch on an 18-yard pass from Tannehill, giving the Dolphins a 24-7 lead.

Pouncey’s schedule

From the beginning, Mike Pouncey’s timetable to return from a significant hip injury was after the sixth week of the season, and it looks like that’s going to be precisely the case.

Despite practicing the last two weeks, Pouncey was again inactive Sunday, missing his fourth game in a row. Satele again started at center for the Dolphins.

This and that

▪ Marcus Thigpen might soon get a call back to the Dolphins’ active roster. The third-year returner spent the week on practice squad as coaches evaluated Jarvis Landry, but their patience might be wearing thin. Landry fumbled a punt for the second time in three games Sunday.

▪ Koa Misi missed his third consecutive game with an ankle injury, while Jelani Jenkins started despite dealing with an abdomen issue for much of the week. Jenkins finished with three tackles.

▪ Other Dolphins inactives: RB Knowshon Moreno, LB Chris McCain, OGs Shelley Smith and Billy Turner and DT Randy Starks.

▪ The Dolphins’ 24-point victory over the Raiders was their biggest in the teams’ 33-game all-time series. The 38 points were the most ever scored by a Joe Philbin-coached team.

▪ British classic rockers Def Leppard performed pregame. Rousing renditions of both the American National Anthem and “God Save the Queen” were sung before kickoff.

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