GLENDALE, Ariz. -- There's something about overtime games that must appeal to the Arizona Cardinals because they play enough of them and usually, it works out in their favor in the end.
It did once again on Sunday as Jay Feely
's 46-yard field goal with 8:29 left in overtime clipped the Miami Dolphins, 24-21, at University of Phoenix Stadium.
It was the Cardinals' fifth overtime game in their past 13 and they've won all five. Sunday's win improved them to 4-0 -- their best start since winning their first seven games in 1974.
"I don't know what it is with us that we have to take it to the last moment of the game, but we're winning and that's all that matters," said wide receiver Andre Roberts, who caught six passes for 118 yards and two touchdowns.
Feely's winning kick was set up thanks to a big hit by linebacker Paris Lenon on Dolphins rookie quarterback Ryan Tannehill, who wound up throwing a wobbly pass that was picked off by safety Kerry Rhodes.
Starting from Miami's 47-yard line, Arizona managed to pick up a first down to make things a little easier for Feely.
"That's the only team that's cut me in my career so there's a little something extra on that for me," Feely said of the Dolphins. "I knew it was from 46 so I didn't have to hit it that hard. I'm thinking, 'Just groove it' and try to make sure it's down the middle."
Tannehill hit a wide open Brian Hartline
for an 80-yard touchdown pass midway through the fourth quarter and it looked like the Cardinals were headed for their first loss.
Instead, Kevin Kolb
led Arizona on a 10-play, 51-yard drive capped by a 15-yard touchdown throw to Roberts with 22 seconds left in regulation, forcing overtime.
Kolb, who was 29 of 48 for 324 yards and three touchdowns, said that pass might have been the most special one he's thrown in his career.
"It's frustrating, but the one before that was probably the worst of my career," he said.
He was referring to an interception on Arizona's previous possession when, on second and goal from the Miami 2, he tried to find Larry Fitzgerald
in the end zone. Cornerback Sean Smith got away with a push on Fitzgerald, however, and made his second interception of the game.
Tannehill hit Hartline on the very next play for the 80-yard touchdown and Miami was successful on the two-point conversion to take a 21-14 lead.
"We knew the game wasn't over, though," said Tannehill, who was 26 of 41 for 431 yards. "We knew they have playmakers on their side of the ball, too."
Hartline set a franchise record with 253 receiving yards on 12 catches.
Arizona had taken a 14-13 lead with 9:45 remaining when Kolb hit Roberts for a 46-yard touchdown strike. It was the first multi-touchdown game for Roberts, who with four touchdowns on the season already has doubled his season total from a year ago.
"Andre comes up with big play after big play it seems," Kolb said.
The Dolphins took a 13-0 lead at halftime behind a very precise Tannehill, who completed 15 of 21 passes for 215 yards in the half.
Hartline (six catches, 110 yards) and Davone Bess (five catches, 86 yards) were his primary targets and they kept making big plays against cornerbacks William Gay and Peterson.
So did the Dolphins' defense, particularly defensive end Cameron Wake, who sacked Kolb five times overall -- three times in the first half.
After taking a 3-0 lead on Dan Carpenter's 32-yard field goal early in the second quarter, coach Joe Philbin had a decision to make late in the half. Facing a fourth-and-goal situation with less than two minutes remaining, he went for it.
Fullback Jorvorskie Lane got the call and powered into the end zone for a 1-yard touchdown, swinging momentum fully in Miami's favor.
But that wouldn't be the end of it in the first half. Smith intercepted a Kolb pass and returned it 21 yards with 40 seconds left and Carpenter added a 27-yarder.
Notes: Arizona has now won seven straight overtime home games, the longest such streak in NFL history. ... The Cardinals were without starting defensive tackle Darnell Dockett (hamstring), tight end Todd Heap (knee) and third-down back LaRod Stephens-Howling (hip flexor). For Dockett, it was just the second game he's missed in nine years. ... With his 2-yard reception in the first quarter, the Cardinals' Larry Fitzgerald tied Mel Gray's club record for consecutive games (121) with having at least one catch. ... With 4.5 sacks Sunday, Wake now has 32.5 in his career -- the most of any Dolphins' player in history in his first four years with the franchise. ... The Dolphins sacked Kevin Kolb five times in the fourth quarter. ... The Dolphins are the only team in the NFL not to allow at least one run of 15 yards or longer. ... Miami extended its NFL-leading streak of not allowing a 100-yard rusher to 18 games.
- Arizona Cardinals
- Kevin Kolb
- Miami Dolphins
- Larry Fitzgerald