SAN DIEGO, Calif. – Miami Dolphins safety Reshad Jones picked off San Diego Chargers quarterback Philip Rivers on Sunday in the second quarter. It was an impressive interception of a tipped pass that set up a good return for Jones.
However, Jones became too excited in the moment and forgot about ball security. He was stripped in traffic and the ball was recovered by Rivers, and the Chargers responded with a field goal.
That play pretty much sums of Miami's sloppy and disappointing 2015 season.
The Dolphins hit a new low in Sunday's 30-14 loss to the Chargers in what could be the final game in San Diego’s Qualcomm Stadium. Miami offered little resistance on both sides of the ball and made a previously 3-10 team look like a 10-3 team.
San Diego (4-10) took a 23-0 lead at halftime and never looked back. The Dolphins' anemic offense couldn’t get off the ground until it was too late in garbage time, despite the fact its defense held the Chargers to just seven points in the second half.
Miami showed little fire throughout. That could be a sign of things to come as the team plays out a woeful season. Expect major changes when the season wraps up in January.
What it means: The Dolphins (5-9) are guaranteed to have a losing season for the first time since 2012. They will fail to match their .500 record from 2013 and 2014. This is the most disappointing season in recent memory for Miami. This was a team many picked to make the playoffs. Instead, the best it can finish is 7-9 – and even that appears unlikely, considering this team appears to be running on fumes down the stretch.
Landry sets record: Dolphins leading receiver Jarvis Landry didn’t look like himself Sunday. He’s been bothered by a knee injury the past few weeks and was clearly hobbled. Still, Landry finished with eight receptions for 54 yards. He broke the team’s single-season receptions record and has 97 catches this season.
Jones returns kickoffs: Jones is having a Pro Bowl-caliber season at safety and has been everywhere on defense. He even returned kicks for the first time in his career. Jones had two returns for 43 yards.
Ouch: Starting left tackle Branden Albert sustained a knee injury in the first half and didn’t return. He was replaced by guard Dallas Thomas, who was moved to left tackle and gave up two sacks. Backup defensive end Chris McCain also sustained a knee injury in the second half and was carted off the field.
What’s next: The Dolphins will finish their season with back-to-back home games against a pair of AFC teams. They will host the Indianapolis Colts at Sun Life Stadium on Dec. 27, then the defending champion New England Patriots in the season finale Jan. 3. The Colts will likely need a victory to remain alive in the AFC South race.