Share this article

print logo

Beast foot forward Lynch finally gets Bills' attack cranked up Week 10: Marshawn Lynch enters 'Beast Mode,' sparking comeback victory over the winless Dolphins

They played the popular rap tune, "Crank Dat," at the two-minute warning in Dolphin Stadium.

Little did they know they were only helping Buffalo Bills rookie running back Marshawn Lynch get into his "Beast Mode."

The Bills were facing a critical third-and-2 situation at the Miami 38, and Lynch was bobbing his head and grooving to the rhythm as the Bills waited in the huddle.

Then the Bills gave the ball to their workhorse back and he hammered his body over right tackle for the second-best, true-grit, 2-yard run of the day. First down, Buffalo.

A minute later, Rian Lindell kicked a 34-yard field goal for the winning points in the Bills' 13-10 victory.

Every phase of the team produced big plays in the fourth quarter to help the Bills (5-4) win their fourth straight game and keep Miami (0-9) winless.

Lynch was the biggest difference-maker on the field.

He scored the Bills' only touchdown. He ran for a two-point conversion on a play on which he had no business gaining an inch. And he made the key plays on the Bills' drive to the winning field goal.

"He's a hard runner and he's a relentless runner," Bills tackle Langston Walker said. "I don't know how he does it. It's just youthful exuberance."
Or it's "Beast Mode," which is how Lynch describes his game-day mind-set.

"It's simply the attitude you can't get tackled by one defender," Lynch says.

The Dolphins felt the brunt of Beast Mode after Lynch's 3-yard touchdown run pulled Buffalo within 10-8 with 9:45 left in the game.

The Bills used a three-receiver set on the two-point try, and Miami had to show some respect for the pass. Quarterback J.P. Losman had called both a run and a pass in the huddle and made his decision at the line.

"I decided our best shot was to run it," Losman said. "The safety was deep and outside, and by the time he came up, Marshawn had a good chance to make a move and get it in."

Miami safety Jason Allen read the run off left tackle. He hit the hole with speed, and the collision was violent. Lynch was knocked backward and then surged forward and over the goal line.

"I'm not certain I've seen a better run than that two-point conversion," Bills coach Dick Jauron said.

"He hammered it in there," coordinator Steve Fairchild said. "That was a tremendous, tremendous play."

Nothing came easy for the Bills on this day. Miami's proud defense, perennially in the top 10 but struggling this season, played an inspired game. The Dolphins stopped the Bills on their first nine drives, and five of them were three-and-out series.

Losman struggled against umbrella coverage that prevented downfield throws. He finished just 12 of 23 for 157 yards.

Miami alternated three- and four-man lines in passing situations and stopped the Bills on their first eight third-down chances.

The Bills' defense, meanwhile, played its sixth straight strong game. While Miami running back Jesse Chatman gained 124 yards on 27 carries, the Bills bent but did not break.

Chris Kelsay made the best defensive play of the day in the third quarter, sacking Cleo Lemon for a safety.

"It felt like it was in slow motion," Kelsay said. "I got slide protection where the back came to block me. He went down to cut me [at the knees] and I was able to get my hands down on him and get back up."

A defensive stop and a 40-yard punt return by Roscoe Parrish gave the ball back to the offense at midfield with 4:37 left.

On third-and-8 from the Miami 48, the Bills finally burned Dolphins defensive coordinator Dom Capers.

The Bills came out in an empty backfield set -- the only play of the game that they did it -- with Lynch lined up as a slot receiver. Miami showed blitz, and Losman knew he had the perfect play called.

"As a quarterback you don't want to let them know that you see it coming," Losman said. "You want to play along with it, like you don't see it, and they come even harder and then they don't put their hands up."

Losman threw a receiver screen to Lynch, who rumbled 12 yards to the Miami 36.

Three plays later, Lynch willed his way to the 2-yard gain on the next third down. He twisted his ankle on the play and was done for the day, finishing with 61 yards on 19 carries.

"He doesn't shirk," said Jauron of Lynch. "He doesn't shirk in practice, and he definitely doesn't shirk on game day."

"He inspires the offensive line to want to block harder and run downfield and hit other guys," said guard Brad Butler. "Because you know when we watch it on film, you'll look pretty foolish if he's breaking tackles downfield and you're just standing there."

Miami's last chance was foiled on a fourth-and-6 play from its 49. Cornerback Jabari Greer played textbook coverage on Marty Booker and batted down a slant pass from Lemon.

"We played hard and we played for 60 minutes, and it took all 60 minutes to beat them," Jauron said.

The Bills were outgained, 269-214, and held the ball only 23:01.

But when your franchise is 51-70 for the decade, you don't quibble about style points.

"There's no such thing as an ugly win because it feels so good," Jauron said.


There are no comments - be the first to comment