• A record day: The 70 points tied for the second-most in NFL history, and the Dolphins broke the record for most yards in a game (726). To put this in perspective, consider that they averaged 10.2 yards per play.
• Tyreek Hill can't be stopped: Hill was targeted on 11 of the 22 routes he ran as a receiver, catching nine passes for 157 yards and a touchdown that came on the third offensive snap of the game.
• Dig into the numbers for yourself: PFF's Premium Stats is the most in-depth collection of NFL and NCAA player performance data. Subscribe today to get full access!
Estimated reading time: 6 minutes
The 70 points tied for the second-most in NFL history, and they broke the record for most yards in a game (726). To put this in perspective, consider that they averaged 10.2 yards per play.
Needless to say, there were quite a few standout performances from the game. Let’s take a closer look.
WR Tyreek Hill
Hill was targeted on 11 of the 22 routes he ran as a receiver, catching nine passes for 157 yards and a touchdown that came on the third offensive snap of the game.
This is poetry in motion ????
— Miami Dolphins (@MiamiDolphins) September 24, 2023
Hill’s 95.0 overall grade for the game was the highest among all offensive players for the week, regardless of position. He caught at least one pass against seven different Broncos defenders and picked up a first down or touchdown against six of them.
Hill’s 4.82 yards per route run through three weeks is by far the most in the NFL. His 94.0 overall grade ranks first among all qualifying wide receivers and is on pace to top his career-high (92.1) set last year in his first season in Miami.
Achane missed the season opener after suffering a shoulder injury in a preseason game against the Houston Texans. He made his NFL debut in Week 2 against New England but was eased into action, playing just six snaps in that game.
With Salvon Ahmed (groin) inactive against Denver, the rookie out of Texas A&M had a chance to play meaningful snaps, and he did not disappoint. He turned 18 carries into 203 yards — 112 of which came after contact — and two touchdowns, forcing six missed tackles along the way.
He added another 30 yards, two touchdowns and three forced missed tackles as a pass-catcher.
— Miami Dolphins (@MiamiDolphins) September 24, 2023
Achane’s 94.4 overall grade was the highest for any running back in Week 3. Given this performance and that he was the highest-drafted running back for the organization since 2016, it’s safe to assume he will have a significant role in the offense moving forward.
Mostert (92.7 overall grade) was not far behind Achane for the top running in Week 3. He also forced six missed tackles on rushing attempts, and 43 of his 83 yards on the ground came after contact. His three rushing touchdowns for the game matched his 2022 season total.
Mostert was targeted seven times through the air, and he caught all seven passes for 60 yards and a touchdown. He forced an additional five missed tackles as a receiver, giving him an incredible 11 for the game on his 20 touches.
Raheem Mostert scores his FOURTH TD of the day!
— NFL (@NFL) September 24, 2023
Through three weeks, Mostert’s 89.4 overall grade ranks first among all qualifying running backs. He has long been one of the more underrated players in the league when healthy, and his production on a per-snap basis has ranked among the best at his position since 2019.
The months of speculation that the Dolphins were going to add another running back to the room seem like a thing of the past at this point.
Tagovailoa was comfortable in the pocket all day against Denver, completing his first 17 passes and finishing the game 23-26 for 309 yards and four touchdowns. He was pressured on just two of his 26 dropbacks, one of which was an unblocked pressure by design on a rollout.
With the run game dominating and Tyreek Hill running free in the secondary, Tagovailoa didn’t have to put the team on his back and make the big-time throws we saw in Week 1. Instead, he just took what the defense gave him and was as efficient as a quarterback could be, committing no turnover-worthy passes and finishing the game with an 87.8 overall grade.
Tagovailoa averaged just 2.26 seconds to throw against the Broncos, one week removed from a career-low 1.98 seconds. He has always had a quick release, even dating back to college, but that’s been taken to another level in his second year in Mike McDaniel’s offense.
Like his teammate Tyreek Hill, Tagovailoa also leads his respective position in overall grade through three weeks at 92.2. The fourth-year quarterback is also the MVP favorite early in the season at +380 (DraftKings).
The Dolphins’ offensive line far exceeded any expectations the first two weeks of the season without Pro Bowl left tackle Terron Armstead. To nobody’s surprise, the unit took their game to another level with Armstead back in the fold against the Broncos.
Armstead showed no rust in his return, earning an overall grade of 81.4. He did not allow pressure across 26 pass-blocking snaps. Collectively, the offensive line allowed just one pressure for the game.
The team’s 89.0 pass-blocking grade was the highest in the league for Week 3 and the best mark for any Dolphins game since the 2017 season.
Through three weeks, the Dolphins have the top pass-blocking grade as a team at 80.4 overall. They have finished in the top 20 just once since 2017 (19th) and ranked last in 2019 and 2021. In other words, the offensive line has been a serious concern for years, so this start is encouraging for the team and their fans moving forward.
When analyzing box scores, the phrase “video game numbers” gets mentioned quite a bit, but the Dolphins' Week 3 performance truly fits the bill.
It’s hard to believe they put 70 points on the board and generated over 700 total yards without star receiver Jaylen Waddle, who missed the game recovering from a concussion.
Waddle is expected to return when Miami travels to Buffalo in Week 4 for an early-season showdown with the Bills. With a win, the Dolphins would start the season 4-0 for the first time since 1995 and take firm control of the AFC East.