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Colts/NFL

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Bills’ blitz confounds Dolphins

– Left tackle Bryant McKinnie and the Miami Dolphins had trouble handling the Buffalo Bills’ blitz during the game.

And McKinnie and Co. had difficulty coming up with answers afterward, too, following a 19-0 loss on Sunday that put a dent in the Dolphins’ playoff chances.

“Um,” McKinnie said, beginning to laugh uncomfortably when asked what went wrong, “I don’t know. I couldn’t tell you.”

The patchwork offensive line – the Dolphins’ season-long weakness – gave up a season-worst seven sacks and was part of a unit that managed just 103 yards and six first downs against an AFC East rival that had little to play for after being eliminated from playoff contention a week earlier.

“I don’t know,” added right tackle Tyson Clabo of a line that has surrendered a franchise season-worst 58 sacks. “Obviously that wasn’t our goal to have that stat ... ”

The Dolphins (8-7) had a three-game winning streak snapped and find themselves in a convoluted mix of four teams – Baltimore (8-7), San Diego (8-7) and Pittsburgh (7-8) – competing for the AFC’s final playoff spot. Miami needs help while closing at home against the New York Jets next weekend.

The Dolphins’ loss clinched the AFC East for New England.

Buffalo’s blitz got to starter Ryan Tannehill on the third play from scrimmage. And the pass rush didn’t stop until he was sacked a final time on his second-to-last snap of the game.

In closing their home schedule, the Bills (6-9) won consecutive games for the first time since Weeks 2-3 of last season.

The seven sacks upped Buffalo’s total to 56 this season, breaking its previous high of 50 during a 14-game season in 1964.

“It’s a nice consolation for where we are,” Kyle Williams said. “I think you’ve seen today potentially what we can do.”

The defense took the burden off a depleted offense led by backup Thad Lewis starting in place of rookie EJ Manuel, out because of a swollen left knee.

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