Tue, 07 Feb 2023

Inside the Numbers: Dolphins vs. Texans Week 12

Miami Dolphins
29 Nov 2022, 21:05 GMT+10

Carter Owen

The Miami Dolphins returned from the bye week and put forth a dominant performance, scoring 30 unanswered points in the first half en route to a 30-15 victory over the Houston Texans Sunday afternoon at Hard Rock Stadium.

With its fifth straight win, Miami (8-3) is off to its best 11-game start since an equal 8-3 mark to begin the 2001 season.

Here's a look at the most notable stats, metrics, and milestones from the Dolphins' Week 12 victory on Inside the Numbers, presented by BDO.

Quarterback Tua Tagovailoa and the Dolphins offense set the tone early, scoring on their opening possession for the fourth time in the last five games.

During the drive, which culminated in a 45-yard field goal from Jason Sanders, Tagovailoa found wide receiver Jaylen Waddle for gains of 11 and 22 yards.

Waddle's 85 receiving yards on the afternoon upped his career total to 1,978 and set a new Dolphins record for most receiving yards in a player's initial two seasons of a career. The record was previously held by Jarvis Landry (1,915) in 2014-15.

Fellow wide receiver Tyreek Hill matched Waddle's receiving output with 85 yards of his own and surpassed 1,200 receiving yards on the season. It marks Hill's fourth career 1,200-yard season and third in a row.

With Hill and Waddle receiving much of the attention from Houston's defense, Sunday offered Miami's array of offensive weapons an opportunity to shine.

Wide receiver River Cracraft totaled career highs in receptions (4) and receiving yards (55) while tight end Durham Smythe caught his first touchdown of the season and third of his career on a 4-yard pass from Tagovailoa.

On the ground, running back Jeff Wilson Jr. recorded 33 yards rushing and scored his third touchdown in as many games in a Dolphins uniform.

But despite the offense flourishing, it was the Dolphins' defense that stole the show, posting a season-high five sacks, forcing three turnovers, and holding Houston to 210 total yards of offense including just 36 rushing yards.

The Texans gained no more than four yards on seven of their 13 offensive possessions and no more than 18 yards on 10 of their 13 drives.

In the second quarter, safety Eric Rowe knocked the ball loose and cornerback Xavien Howard pounced, returning it 16 yards for his fourth career defensive touchdown.

Sanders, who made all three of his field goals and all three of his extra points, capped the half with a 35-yard kick to give Miami a 30-0 edge heading into halftime.

The 30-point halftime advantage was the team's largest since a 41-0 halftime margin against Houston on Oct. 25, 2015.

Linebacker Andrew Van Ginkel and safety Verone McKinley III each grabbed their first career interceptions and defensive tackle Christian Wilkins tallied four tackles (three solo), two tackles for loss and a pass defensed.

Miami has scored 30+ points in four straight games for the first time since 2009 and Tagovailoa's 278 passing yards are the most in the first half of a game by a Dolphins quarterback since at least 1991.

The Dolphins will look to extend their winning streak to six on Sunday, Dec. 4, when they travel to Levi's Stadium to take on the San Francisco 49ers (7-4). Kickoff is scheduled for 4:05 p.m. ET on FOX.

For more on Sunday's game, listen to the Game Recap on Drive Time with Travis Wingfield.

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