NFL News & Analysis

NFL Week 7 Game Recap: Atlanta Falcons 30, Miami Dolphins 28

Miami Gardens, Florida, USA; Atlanta Falcons running back Cordarrelle Patterson (84) run with the football as Miami Dolphins defensive end Zach Sieler (92) attempts a tackle during the first quarter of the game at Hard Rock Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Sam Navarro-USA TODAY Sports

With a game-winning kick by Younghoe Koo, the Atlanta Falcons beat the Miami Dolphins, 30-28, in Week 7 of the 2021 NFL season.

The Dolphins played like a fish out of water early in the game and dug themselves into 20-7 and 27-14 holes before coming back to take a 28-27 lead with 2:33 left in the game. But that was too much time for Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan, who found rookie tight end Kyle Pitts twice to set up a 36-yard field goal for the win.

The Falcons move to 3-3 and will take on the Carolina Panthers next week, while the Dolphins fall to 1-5 head north to play the Buffalo Bills.

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Atlanta Falcons


Matt Ryan created big play after big play, and even though he wasn’t perfect throwing underneath, he threw five balls beyond 20 yards that were all caught for 165 yards and a touchdown.

Matt Ryan by Target Depth

Target Depth Comps Atts Yds TD:INT
Behind LOS 3 4 5 0:0
0-9 Yards 12 19 92 1:1
10-19 Yards 5 10 74 0:0
20+ Yards 5 5 165 1:0
Running Backs

Cordarrelle Patterson was the lead ball-carrier again, creating 4.3 yards per carry on 14 rushes. He forced three missed tackles and was targeted four times in the passing game, although he caught only two balls for two yards.

Receivers/Tight Ends

Calvin Ridley lead the way with 10 targets, but he caught only four passes for 26 yards. Rookie tight end Kyle Pitts put together another solid outing, racking up 112 yards, two contested catches and three explosive plays.

Offensive Line

The line continued to struggle in pass protection. Jalen Mayfield allowed five pressures, while Jason Spriggs surrendered three. However, none of the linemen were charged for a sack. 

Defensive Line

Grady Jarrett had another big game as a pass-rusher, totaling five pressures and two quarterback hits. The defensive line failed to register a sack but did finish with 11 total pressures.


Deion Jones did have a quarterback sack, and he was also targeted in coverage by the Dolphins throughout the game. He allowed eight catches on eight targets for just 36 yards and only one first down while making six tackles against in the passing game and five more in the run game.


Fabian Moreau had an interesting game, allowing four first downs on five catches for 51 total yards. However, he forced a missed completion on each of his other three targets. A.J. Terrell was targeted five times for four catches, but they went for just 23 yards. Terrell was credited with forcing the lone incompletion into his coverage.

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Miami Dolphins


Tua Tagovailoa came alive in the second half after posting lowly numbers early in the game. He completed 16-of-21 passes for just 6.0 yards per attempt. But that number rose to 8.8 yards per attempt in the second half.

Tua Tagovailoa Passing By Quarter

Quarter YPA Comp % Avg. Time to Throw Avg. Depth of Target
1 5.4 81.8% 2.41 5.5
2 6.6 70% 2.41 5.4
3 7.3 85.7% 2.72 7.9
4 9.7 83.3% 2.77 6.8
Running Backs

Myles Gaskin was given the bulk of the carries and went for 66 yards on 15 attempts, with 33 of those yards coming before contact. Salvon Ahmed took seven carries for just 26 yards. 

Receivers/Tight Ends

Mike Gesicki and Jaylen Waddle each saw eight targets and hauled in seven catches. Gesicki beat out the rookie in yards (85 to 83) and caught three of his four contested targets. Waddle caught both of his contested looks.

Offensive Line

Austin Jackson continued to struggle at tackle, giving up five pressures. Four of the five starting offensive linemen surrendered multiple pressures, with Robert Hunt giving up the lone sack for the group. 

Defensive Line

Emmanuel Ogbah led the team with five pressures, but Christian Wilkins helped out with three and Adam Butler added two. Wilkins also made three run stops.


Elandon Roberts had a rough day, allowing all six of his targets in coverage to be caught for four first downs, a touchdown and 77 yards in total. He also missed two tackles against the run. 


The Dolphins' well-paid cornerback duo held up relatively well in coverage. Byron Jones allowed five catches for 38 yards and two first downs on six targets, while Xavien Howard surrendered just one catch on eight targets and had an interception and two forced incompletions. 

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