The Miami Dolphins were eliminated with their 30-12 loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers on Sunday.
Miami was taking part in the team's first playoff game since 2008 and things ended with a whimper. The Steelers posted two quick touchdowns and opened up a 14-0 lead in seemingly a blink of the eye. The Dolphins seemed flustered and over-matched with a daunting comeback attempt ahead of them.
The Dolphins would have some brief success, but the first half ended on a big down note. Miami converted two field goal tries and also picked up an interception as the first half was winding down. Matt Moore had the team driving towards the end zone with under a minute to go, when he fumbled the ball away. The turnover allowed Pittsburgh to maintain a 14-point lead as the teams went into the locker rooms.
In his first career playoff game, Moore took some hard hits and had some solid production mixed with poor play. Despite having little time to work with often, Moore ended up with 289 yards in the air during a 29-36 day. The veteran also was sent to the ground early and often during the first half, but bounced back quickly. Moore ended up being sacked five times in the game for 36 yards.
Down by 24 in the fourth quarter, Moore would find the end zone for the first time in the game. The quarterback connected with Damien Williams on a four-yard touchdown pass. The Dolphins would fail to convert on the two-point try and still trailed by three scores despite the TD.
While Moore did not appear rattled most of the time, there were moments where Pittsburgh appeared dominant. On three straight possessions, Moore fumbled twice and was then picked off. The 32-year old will likely return next season to backup Ryan Tannehill once again in the second year of a two-year deal.
After rushing for over 200 yards in a win over Pittsburgh during the season, Jay Ajayi was held to only 33 yards in this one. The Steelers did a terrific job of keeping Ajayi out of the game, and at the same time disrupting Miami's offensive game plan. The Dolphins had relied on Ajayi for most of their 9-1 stretch in the season, but he was not able to get anything going in this one. Ajayi's day came to an end early as well due to lingering issues with his shoulder.
The Dolphins have some needs in the off-season and will also make roster decisions on a number of veteran players.