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Tannehill leads Dolphins past Bears 27-14

October 20, 2014

CHICAGO (AP) — Ryan Tannehill was sure he was going to hand the ball off. Then he saw the defense, and he knew what he had to do.

Tannehill had a 30-yard run on a fourth-and-1 play in the third quarter of the Miami Dolphins’ 27-14 victory over the listless Chicago Bears on Sunday.

The clutch keeper was part of a big day for the third-year quarterback, who threw for 277 yards and two touchdowns. He also had six carries for 48 yards, keeping Chicago off balance by using his legs on a couple of key plays.

“He’s a good athlete and he makes good decisions,” Miami coach Joe Philbin said. “When you combine those two things, we’re not looking to run him 30 times a game, but if it’s there and that’s what the defense gives us, the ability to use his speed and athleticism is a plus.”

The Dolphins (3-3) were working with a 14-7 lead when Tannehill faked a handoff to Lamar Miller on a zone read play and ran around the other side all the way to the Chicago 9. Miller finished the 13-play, 83-yard drive with a 2-yard touchdown run with 31 seconds left in the period.

“I told the guys up front that it was going to be a 90-percent chance I am going to give this ball, just to get the first down, because (it was) a full yard,” said Tannehill, who connected on his first 14 passes and was 25 of 32 overall. “Just by the look they gave us it ended up being a keep and a big play.”

The Bears (3-4) remained winless in three home games and have dropped five of their last seven at Soldier Field, dating to last year. Matt Forte scored two touchdowns, and Jeremiah Ratliff finished with a career-best 3 1/2 sacks.

“This was a very, very disappointing loss to our football team,” coach Marc Trestman said.

That frustration was evident in the locker room, where there was a shouting match before reporters were allowed in. It was unclear who was involved, but the raised voices could be heard in the concrete corridors of Chicago’s longtime home.

“It’s unacceptable. We’re 3-4. It’s halfway into the season,” wide receiver Brandon Marshall said. “It’s unacceptable. Want me to say it again? Unacceptable.”

Here are a couple more things to take from Sunday’s game:

REBOUNDING: Miami bounced back from a brutal 27-24 loss to Green Bay last weekend. It looked as if the Dolphins were on their way to a big win over the Packers before Aaron Rodgers threw a 4-yard touchdown pass in the final seconds.

“We weren’t going to let that affect the rest of our season,” Tannehill said. “We were going to let it inspire us the rest of the season. It speaks to the character we have on this team.”

The Dolphins are at Jacksonville next Sunday.

ROUGH ROAD: Chicago will get another chance for its first home win of the season on Nov. 16 against Minnesota. But first up is a pair of difficult road games against New England and Green Bay.

“This is a time when we all have to look at ourselves individually — like real self-checking — and look at ourselves as a team and decide where we’re going to be and work toward that and be consistent at it and go at it,” Ratliff said.

CUTLER’S TURNOVERS: Jay Cutler threw an interception and lost a fumble as Chicago dropped to 0-4 when he throws at least one pick. He was 21 for 34 for 190 yards after he threw for 381 yards in last Sunday’s 27-13 victory at Atlanta.

“After watching film all week we saw he was looking where he threw the ball,” said Reshad Jones, who picked off Cutler’s pass in the second quarter. “He was always looking at his receivers and never looking off. I tried to take advantage of that, and it paid off.”

FULLER INJURY: The Bears lost rookie cornerback Kyle Fuller to a hip injury in the third quarter. He was first announced as questionable to return, but the Bears said in the fourth that he would miss the rest of the game.

Fuller was selected with the 14th pick in this year’s draft out of Virginia Tech. He has three interceptions.

KICKING QUESTIONS: Miami’s Caleb Sturgis kicked two field goals, but he missed a 50-yarder in the second quarter and had a 37-yard try blocked in the fourth.


AP NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org and www.twitter.com/AP_NFL


Jay Cohen can be reached at http://www.twitter.com/jcohenap

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