PIT-MIA grades: Landry, Maxwell stand out in Dolphins' win
Miami Dolphins 30, Pittsburgh Steelers 15
Here are the top takeaways and highest-graded players from the Dolphins’ 30-15 win over the Steelers in Week 6:
Quarterback grade: Ryan Tannehill, 82.4
Tannehill takes what Steelers’ defense gives him short
Dolphins starter Ryan Tannehill earned his second-highest grade of the season in Miami’s win, completing 24 of 31 aimed passes for 252 yards, 0 TDs and 0 INTs. For the most part, he attacked the Pittsburgh defense with underneath throws, as 24 of his 31 attempts traveled less than 10 yards downfield, but he connected on two deep shots down the left sideline for a total of 92 yards that proved to be big plays in this one. His offensive line did an excellent job of keeping him upright, allowing pressure on just five of his 32 dropbacks, but he completed four of five throws when the Steelers’ pass rush did get to him, for 73 yards.
Top offensive grades:
WR Jarvis Landry, 85.3
QB Ryan Tannehill, 82.4
TE MarQueis Gray, 80.9
T Branden Albert, 77.2
G Laremy Tunsil, 76.1
Landry, Gray, Ajayi make plays for Tannehill
Slot receiver Jarvis Landry earned the top offensive grade of the game, dispersing his seven receptions (off of eight targets) for 91 yards among five different Steelers defenders, with 44 of his yards coming after the catch. Tight end MarQueis Gray caught all three passes thrown his way for 81 yards. Jay Ajayi was Miami’s clear-cut lead back in this one, even with Arian Foster returning to the field, and he put up 204 yards and two touchdowns on his 25 carries, producing two broken tackles and 148 yards after contact. The Miami offensive line struggled as run-blockers but performed very well in pass protection, not allowing any sacks and giving up just five total pressures all game.
Top defensive grades
CB Byron Maxwell, 94.7
LB Kiko Alonso, 82.1
S Reshad Jones, 80.3
DI Ndamukong Suh, 78.5
ED Cameron Wake, 77.9
Miami CB Maxwell shuts down Steelers star WR Brown
The standout performance in this one came from cornerback Byron Maxwell, who struggled mightily a year ago with Philadelphia after signing a big-money free-agent deal, and was benched a couple of weeks ago. He was targeted eight times and gave up four catches, but for only 29 total yards, while knocking away four passes. Five of those targets came when covering Steelers star wideout Antonio Brown, and he allowed three catches for just 23 yards. We also saw positive progress from WR-to-CB convert Tony Lippett, after the Dolphins lost promising 2016 second-round rookie CB Xavien Howard for about a month to a meniscus tear. Lippett aptly stepped into the role to limit Pittsburgh receivers to three completions, with an average of five yards on seven targets. Defensive ends Cameron Wake and Andre Branch combined for three sacks.
Quarterback grade: Ben Roethlisberger, 53.9
Roethlisberger struggles overall, and is awful facing pressure
Ben Roethlisberger had to briefly leave Sunday’s loss due to a knee injury – backup Landry Jones earned a 55.8 grade in just four snaps while relieving him – but when he was on the field, he struggled against the Dolphins’ defense. He only completed one of his six attempts of 20-plus yards, and on the nine (out of a total of 36) dropbacks he was under pressure, he earned a passer rating of 0.0 for his two completions for 14 yards, 0 touchdowns, one interception and two sacks.
Top offensive grades
T Alejandro Villanueva, 75.2
WR Cobi Hamilton, 74.6
C Maurkice Pouncey, 73.7
WR Darrius Heyward-Bey, 72.6
WR Antonio Brown, 72.0
Stars Brown, Bell held in check by Miami
The Steelers’ star duo of WR Antonio Brown and RB Le’Veon Bell were largely kept in check by the Dolphins’ defense, with Brown totaling just four catches for 39 yards on seven targets and Bell proving to be more effective as a pass-catcher (six catches for 55 yards on seven targets) than he was as a runner (10 carries for 53 yards). Miami was effective at disrupting Roethlisberger, as he was sacked twice and pressured nine times.
Top defensive grades
DI Stephon Tuitt, 87.2
DI Javon Hargrave, 81.2
CB Ross Cockrell, 77.1
DI Daniel McCullers, 75.2
LB Vince Williams, 72.8
Tuitt, Hargrave fare well in run defense
The standout for the Pittsburgh defense in this one was defensive lineman Stephon Tuitt, who was a beast in the running game, earning four run stops, while also contributing positively as a pass-rusher, recording three total pressures (two hits, one hurries). Nose tackle Javon Hargrave joined Tuitt in disrupting Miami’s running game, grading very well in that facet of the game.
PFF Game-Ball Winner: Dolphins CB Byron Maxwell
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