The Atlanta Falcons and Miami Dolphins kicked off their preseason schedules on Saturday night, with the Falcons coming out on top 17-16.
The Falcons were led by quarterback Desmond Ridder, who threw for 120 yards and a touchdown in his first preseason action. Ridder also ran for 15 yards.
The Dolphins got a strong performance from their running game, led by Myles Gaskin, who rushed for 64 yards. Jaylen Waddle also had a big game for the Dolphins, catching five passes for 58 yards.
The game was close throughout, with the Falcons taking a 10-7 lead into halftime. The Dolphins tied the game in the third quarter, but the Falcons responded with a touchdown in the fourth quarter to take the lead for good.
Head Coach Arthur Smith: On how he assesses the player’s performance today against Miami:
“It was a clean op. Some of the situational stuff, we need to be cleaner, but I think in the critical downs guys stepped up all over the place and made plays. Whether they had their hands on the football, got a couple picks, it was good to see Dee Alford. That was a really cool punt return. Obviously he had the touchdown. When they rushed late, I thought our guys just continued to grind out the rush. I thought we blocked pretty well, but again, there’s things we’ve got to clean up and I think our depth was good enough sometimes in the drop-back passing game and cost us a few. I felt Logan (Woodside) threw some good footballs tonight but plenty to work on.”
The Falcons’ defense also played well, holding the Dolphins to just 300 total yards.
The win was a good start for the Falcons, who are looking to bounce back from a disappointing 2022 season. The Dolphins also played well, and they will be a tough team to beat this season.
The Falcons will next play the Cincinnati Bengals on August 26. The Dolphins will next play the New York Jets on August 27.
Here are some of the key takeaways from the game:
- Desmond Ridder looked good in his first preseason action. He showed good mobility and accuracy, and he made some good throws under pressure.
- The Falcons’ running game was also effective. Cordarrelle Patterson had 45 yards rushing, and Tyler Allgeier had 29 yards rushing.
- The Dolphins’ defense played well, but they gave up some big plays. They will need to tighten up their coverage if they want to be successful this season.
Overall, it was a good game for both teams. The Falcons got a good start to their preseason, and the Dolphins showed that they are still a dangerous team.