The student couldn’t outplay the mentor, even though the mentor lost their starting quarterback.
He went from a tough win on the road against a really good team, to a win the Miami Dolphins should get – once the San Francisco 49ers lost Jimmy Garoppolo – and finally a comeback that Miami didn’t. couldn’t end with an ugly ending.
With Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa mostly shaky and 49ers backup Brock Purdy stepping up, Miami ultimately didn’t secure coach Mike McDaniel’s victory over Niners coach Kyle Shanahan, whom McDaniel spent 14 years on. under different roles in different teams throughout his career.
Returning the ball four times, the Dolphins lost Sunday’s game at Levi’s Stadium, 33-17.
“It was like another game for me,” McDaniel said of having Shanahan on the other side, although the former 49ers assistant coach enjoyed shaking his hand before and after the game. “To see a lot of people that you invest blood and sweat and tears with and to see a lot of people that are integral to your journey, that you don’t otherwise know where you’d be without them, that’s cool part of the NFL.
Miami (8-4) saw its five-game winning streak and going Week 13 second in the AFC East, following a Buffalo Bills victory over the New England Patriots on Thursday night and the New York Jets’ loss on Sunday to the Vikings. of Minnesota. . The Dolphins sit sixth in the AFC playoff table after Sunday.
“We don’t have to worry about that, but it’s an opportunity to improve,” Tagovailoa said after the game.
Tagovailoa was 18 of 33 for 295 yards, two touchdowns, two interceptions and a late fumble that resulted in a San Francisco touchdown. He came through the game against the 49ers’ top-ranked defender and star passer Nick Bosa, who had three sacks on Sunday, without either of the two starting tackles as Brandon Shell played the right tackle and Greg Little left for the injured Terron Armstead and Austin Jackson.
“It was a really bad performance on my part,” Tagovailoa said. “It sucks that we didn’t come out and do what we wanted to do. … It starts with me, offensively. Turnovers, third tries, miscommunications.
Purdy, who was Mr. Irrelevant as the final pick last draft, went 25 of 37 for 210 yards, two touchdowns and an interception after coming in for Garoppolo and his season-ending foot injury.
“He did a terrific job. Being a rookie, it’s hard in this league to do what you’re asked to do,” Tagovailoa said of Purdy. “Just the assurance he had, doing what he was asked with feints of action, with his recoil game.”
The Dolphins, trailing 23-17, had a chance to take a late lead, but a fourth catch called from the field for tight end Mike Gesicki was knocked down, returning the ball to the 49ers before they started putting the game out of reach.
“Every angle I saw, it looked like completion,” Gesicki said. “I don’t know. I mean, who knows these days? Take or no take, whatever it is, but I thought it was a take – and especially when you call it on the pitch.
The 49ers added a field goal to make it a two possession game with 3:57 remaining.
Bosa got his third sack as Miami tried one last time to come back, forcing a fumble from Tagovailoa that linebacker Dre Greenlaw returned for a touchdown.
Down 23-10, Tagovailoa got the Dolphins back in possession with a 45-yard touchdown pass to Tyreek Hill wide open midway through the fourth quarter. 49ers safety Talanoa Hufanga bit on the mid-pass lane, leaving the deep center of the field open to Hill, who finished with 146 yards.
Purdy led an impressive two-minute drill just before halftime to give the 49ers a 17-10 halftime lead. The 11-play, 76-yard drive that lasted 2:44 was capped off with a 3-yard touchdown pass to Christian McCaffrey. Earlier in possession, Purdy had 19-yard passes to tight end George Kittle and wide receiver Jauan Jennings and an 18-yard gain to McCaffrey.
Tagovailoa was being driven into San Francisco territory during Miami’s first set in the second half, but his no-interception streak ended at 193 after 49ers cornerback Jimmie Ward made a diving pick on a pass intended for Jeff Wilson Jr. as Tagovailoa was hit by Arik Armstead.
The Dolphins were driving after a big play where Tagovailoa escaped pressure, found Hill for a 19-yard gain, then suffered a 15-yard rough run with the passer added to play when Bosa hit him low and maybe late.
San Francisco added a basket on Tagovailoa’s first turnover. Purdy extended the drive with a second effort on a fourth and a stealth quarterback.
The 49ers quickly intercepted Tagovailoa again on his very next pass. Tagovailoa kicked behind Hill, who tipped the ball in the air to reach him, allowing for an easy interception by Deommodore Lenoir. Short-field San Francisco added another field goal from Robbie Gould to create a 13-point lead before Hill’s touchdown.
The Dolphins started Sunday with a quick strike on the first play from scrimmage. Tagovailoa connected on a quick pass to Trent Sherfield in a seam, and the former 49ers wide receiver ran across the field and onto the left sideline for the 75-yard touchdown.
The lead faded later in the first quarter. The 49ers allowed Purdy to connect with wide open fullback Kyle Jusczyk for a 3-yard touchdown to go up 10-7. That score followed Garoppolo’s opening streak that culminated in a field goal after the third sack between Jaelan Phillips and Jerome Baker.
Cornerback Xavien Howard had a first-half interception, his first of the season, but he came on a fourth play and actually lost the Dolphins 21 yards from field position. Miami didn’t get any points on turnover.
Melvin Ingram had one sack for the Miami defense, and Zach Sieler and Andrew Van Ginkel split another.
The 49ers forced a fourth turnover when linebacker Fred Warner intercepted backup quarterback Skylar Thompson in the final seconds. Tagovailoa, who was nursing an ankle injury, left after Bosa’s final blow but said he was “as good as you can get after a game”.
The Dolphins will stay in California for the upcoming week of practice before next Sunday’s prime time meeting with the Los Angeles Chargers at SoFi Stadium.