Cameron Wake’s safety gives Dolphins overtime win over Bengals
Miami won 22-20 thanks to the third OT safety in NFL history.
The Associated Press
MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. — With the Miami Dolphins needing any kind of score to end a four-game losing streak, two points were plenty.
Cameron Wake sacked Andy Dalton for a safety with 6:38 left in overtime, and Miami beat the Cincinnati Bengals 22-20 on Thursday night.
On third-and-10 from the 8, Dalton retreated to the goal line and was tackled by Wake coming up the middle for the third overtime safety in NFL history. The officials immediately signaled the score, which was upheld following a replay review.
“We called a pressure, and the guys executed it well,” coach Joe Philbin said. “Cam had good pressure throughout the game, and he made a play to end the game.”
Wake had three sacks, and Cincinnati committed four turnovers that might have meant a difference of 17 points.
The Dolphins (4-4) won for the first time since their 3-0 start and snapped a four-game winning streak by the Bengals (6-3), who still enjoy a two-game lead in the AFC North.
“You never want to lose four games in a row,” Philbin said, “and we had an excellent football team coming into town. It was time for us to step up and we had to make a decision — what are we going to be? And I thought they answered the bell pretty well tonight.”
The teams traded punts to start overtime. After Cincinnati’s Terence Newman was called for a 38-yard pass interference penalty, the Bengals dug in and forced another punt that pinned them deep, setting up the safety by Wake.
“My eyes were downfield, and he was there pretty quick,” Dalton said, adding he thought he was out of the end zone.
According to STATS, Minnesota’s Mike Merriweather had the first NFL overtime safety in 1989 against the Los Angeles Rams, and Chicago’s Adewale Ogunleye had the second against Tennessee in 2004.
The Bengals could have tried a 56-yard field goal in overtime but punted to the Dolphins instead.
“We had a chance, maybe,” Cincinnati coach Marvin Lewis said, “but we felt better about pinning them down.”
49ers LB Smith activated
SAN FRANCISCO — All-Pro 49ers linebacker Aldon Smith was activated to the 53-man roster from the non-football injury list Thursday, two days after he turned himself in to Santa Clara County authorities as he faces weapons charges.
One of San Francisco’s dynamic pass rushers appears ready to return.
Smith had been undergoing rehab at an inpatient facility for substance abuse since late September and missed five games. With San Francisco (6-2) on its bye this week, Smith could resume practicing and working out on his own, then formally practice next week ahead of a Nov. 10 home game against the Carolina Panthers.
• San Diego outside linebacker Jarret Johnson, who missed two games with an injured hamstring, is expected to play Sunday when the Chargers put their two-game winning streak on the line against Washington.
He has been missed. Despite sitting out two games, Johnson is tied for the team lead with three sacks.
• The NFL will hold 15 regional combines throughout the country starting in February, followed by a super regional.
The regional combines begin Feb. 8-9 in Houston and end with the super regional on April 12-13 at Ford Field in Detroit.
The regional combines are a supplement to the NFL’s national scouting combine in Indianapolis.
• Jurors deliberating the fate of the man charged in the 2007 slaying of former Washington Redskins star Sean Taylor watched the suspect’s videotaped confession again and asked a question, but didn’t reach a verdict Thursday.
The panel will return Friday to resume debating the case of Eric Rivera Jr., the 23-year-old Fort Myers man accused of fatally shooting Taylor during an ill-fated burglary attempt at the Pro Bowl safety’s Miami-area home.