49ers
Dolphins
9 - 14 Final
  for this game

Dolphins keep pace in AFC East race

Dec 15, 2008 - 1:14 AM By Christopher Stock PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer

MIAMI (Ticker) -- The Miami Dolphins followed a familiar script they hope will get them to the playoffs - efficient play from quarterback Chad Pennington and a bend-but-don't break defense.

Pennington tossed two first-half touchdown passes and Joey Porter turned back a late threat with a fourth-down sack Sunday as the Dolphins continued their stunning playoff charge with a 14-9 win over the San Francisco 49ers.

Miami (9-5) won for the seventh time in eight games to maintain a share of first place in the AFC East with the New York Jets and New England Patriots. The Jets and Patriots also won Sunday to improve to 9-5.

The Dolphins, however, control their own destiny and will win the division by beating Kansas City and the Jets in their final two games. It would an astonishing turnaround after last season's 1-15 finish.

"Each year is its own entity," Pennington said. "I've been on teams where one year, everything goes your way, the next year, it's like a paddle on a boat with a rope. That's why you try and enjoy these moments."

Early on, Miami appeared headed for an easy win, as Pennington utilized both his tight ends for scores in the first half.

David Martin hauled in a a 61-yard TD on the Dolphins' first possession and rookie Joey Haynos caught a 19-yard TD in the second quarter for his first career score that staked the Dolphins to a 14-3 halftime lead.

"It's awesome," Haynos said. "That's how it was in college. My first catch in college was a touchdown. It's a little different with this one, but it's really exciting."

But Miami's offense stagnated in the second half, and the Dolphins had to sweat out the final minutes.

Looking to again play spoiler after beating the Jets last week, San Francisco (5-9) reached the Dolphins' 21-yard line with 1:13 remaining.

Porter, who had been quiet through out the game, finally made his presence felt as the NFL sack leader dropped Shaun Hill for a 10-yard loss at 4th-and-10.

"Right now, we have full control over what's going to happen to our playoff picture and just take it one game at a time," Porter said. "We'll party with this one tonight and it will be over with. And tomorrow after we watch film, the whole focus will be on Kansas City."

The 49ers played without running back Frank Gore, who was inactive due to a sprained left ankle.

Still, they dominated time of possession with a ball-control offense, running 74 plays compared to Miami's 41, which allowed the 49ers to hold the ball for nearly 39 minutes.

However, the 49ers couldn't finish drives. They came up empty on a 16-play march at the end of the first half, then settled for short field goals on two more long possessions in the second half.

"We executed well," 49ers coach Mike Singletary said. "We just could not get into the end zone so that's very frustrating."

Joe Nedney's 28-yard field goal pulled San Francisco within 14-9 with 9:21 remaining.

"Sometimes, you've got to have a bit of luck," Dolphins coach Tony Sparano said. "I don't want to take anything away from the San Francisco 49ers, they're playing tremendous. That being said, I've got to give my own team credit. They won the fourth quarter and we're able to seize the moment, again."

Miami appeared ready to put away the game, but Dan Carpenter gave the 49ers another chance when his 48-yard field goal hit the right crossbar with 2:36 remaining.

Pennington completed only 12-of-19 passes for 156 yards, but turned in another mistake-free

performance.

Through 14 games, Miami has just 10 turnovers, putting them on pace to break the NFL record of 14 set by the 1990 Super Bowl champion New York Giants.

Hill finished 30-of-46 for 233 yards but was kept out of the end zone. The Dolphins have not allowed a touchdown in three straight games.

"Any time you're kicking field goals and not scoring touchdowns, that really hinders you," Hill said.






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    49ers 9, Dolphins 14  FinalDec 15 12:49 AM
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    49ers 9, Dolphins 14  FinalDec 14 8:06 PM


  • ** CONFIRMED **
    NFL
    SAN FRANCISCO 9
    MIAMI 14 FINAL

    Dec 14 3:56 PM
  • 98
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    RUWTbot Added 23 roots (Close Finish)

    49ers 9, Dolphins 14  4th - 1:07Dec 14 3:52 PM
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    49ers 9, Dolphins 14  4th - 2:45Dec 14 3:42 PM
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    49ers 9, Dolphins 14  4th - 2:45Dec 14 3:42 PM
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    49ers 9, Dolphins 14  4th - 5:29Dec 14 3:33 PM


  • NFL
    FG SFO
    JOE NEDNEY 28 YD
    SAN FRANCISCO 9
    MIAMI 14 9:21 LEFT, 4TH QTR

    49ers 9, Dolphins 14  4th - 9:21Dec 14 3:16 PM


  • NFL
    END, 3RD QTR 1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    SAN FRANCISCO 3 0 3 6
    MIAMI 7 7 0 14 END, 3RD QTR
    SCORING SUMMARY
    1ST QUARTER: MIA - TD, DAVID MARTIN 61 YD PASS FROM CHAD
    PENNINGTON (DAN CARPENTER KICK),
    5:14. Drive: 3 plays, 73 yards in
    1:28. Key plays: Pennington 12-yard
    pass to Fasano to Miami 44. MIAMI
    7-

    Dec 14 3:07 PM


  • NFL
    FG SFO
    JOE NEDNEY 23 YD
    SAN FRANCISCO 6
    MIAMI 14 2:46 LEFT, 3RD QTR

    49ers 6, Dolphins 14  3rd - 2:46Dec 14 2:54 PM


  • NFL
    HALFTIME 1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    SAN FRANCISCO 3 0 3
    MIAMI 7 7 14 HALFTIME
    SCORING SUMMARY
    1ST QUARTER: MIA - TD, DAVID MARTIN 61 YD PASS FROM CHAD
    PENNINGTON (DAN CARPENTER KICK),
    5:14. Drive: 3 plays, 73 yards in
    1:28. Key plays: Pennington 12-yard
    pass to Fasano to Miami 44. MIAMI
    7-0
    SF

    Dec 14 2:18 PM


  • NFL
    TD MIA
    JOEY HAYNOS 19 YD PASS FROM CHAD PENNINGTON
    (DAN CARPENTER KICK)
    SAN FRANCISCO 3
    MIAMI 14 8:27 LEFT, 2ND QTR

    49ers 3, Dolphins 14  2nd - 8:27Dec 14 1:58 PM


  • NFL
    END, 1ST QTR 1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    SAN FRANCISCO 3 3
    MIAMI 7 7 END, 1ST QTR
    SCORING SUMMARY
    1ST QUARTER: MIA - TD, DAVID MARTIN 61 YD PASS FROM CHAD
    PENNINGTON (DAN CARPENTER KICK),
    5:14. Drive: 3 plays, 73 yards in
    1:28. Key plays: Pennington 12-yard
    pass to Fasano to Miami 44. MIAMI
    7-

    Dec 14 1:33 PM


  • NFL
    FG SFO
    JOE NEDNEY 38 YD
    SAN FRANCISCO 3
    MIAMI 7 3:57 LEFT, 1ST QTR

    49ers 3, Dolphins 7  1st - 3:57Dec 14 1:24 PM


  • NFL
    TD MIA
    DAVID MARTIN 61 YD PASS FROM CHAD PENNINGTON
    (DAN CARPENTER KICK)
    SAN FRANCISCO 0
    MIAMI 7 9:46 LEFT, 1ST QTR

    49ers 0, Dolphins 7  1st - 9:46Dec 14 1:13 PM
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    49ers 0, Dolphins 0  1st - 14:55Dec 14 1:08 PM
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    49ers vs. DolphinsDec 14 3:41 AM