Ryan Fitzpatrick did just enough -- throwing for 315 yards and running for 47 more and a TD -- to earn more cushion as the starting quarterback while Tua Tagovailoa develops. Fitzpatrick completed passes to 10 different receivers, dove for first downs and touchdowns and battled Seattle's Russell Wilson all day.
Miami believes it can win with him. But zero touchdown passes and two interceptions against a depleted Seahawks secondary doesn't elicit much excitement, either.
The classic boom-or-bust QB, Fitzpatrick will get more rope but needs to produce to quell cries for Tua.
Fitzpatrick said postgame he left the game "feeling terrible" because the Dolphins moved the ball but went 1-of-3 in the red zone.
Buy or sell: I'm buying Isaiah Ford's performance. He entered the game with 52 career targets but got 10 on Sunday, converting four catches for 48 yards. Late in the game, Fitzpatrick trusted him to win on a lob pass over the middle and Ford did just that by beating his man. The Dolphins can't seem to get Preston Williams going, so Ford is an intriguing receiver option behind DeVante Parker going forward.
Biggest hole in the game plan: The secondary taking an untimely lunch break on the Seahawks' final drive of the first half. Seattle easily put up 75 yards and a touchdown in 21 seconds, an inexcusable lapse by a secondary that let David Moore run free for a 57-yard deep ball. The Dolphins' secondary contained Wilson at times, but too many of his 360 yards came against defensive breakdowns or poor tackling. Coach Brian Flores said the Dolphins were out of position on the Moore play.
Troubling trend: First-round cornerback Noah Igbinoghene’s struggles continue. Flores admitted Igbinoghene has had issues in two of his past three games, which is somewhat expected but worth watching. "He's a rookie. He's going to have ups and downs," Flores said. "He's a resilient kid. He’s a talented kid. He's just got to learn from this."
Promising trend: Splash players splashed on defense. Two of the team's big free-agent signings -- pass-rushers Shaq Lawson and Emmanuel Ogbah -- delivered sacks on one of the game's hardest players to bring down. Xavien Howard’s brilliant diving interception in the end zone reminded he's still got elite ability. Miami isn't good enough on defense to completely shut down top-shelf quarterbacks, so it must win with turnovers, sacks and forced fumbles.