The Wildness that was the final four minutes of Saturday Night Football

Updated: Dec 28, 2020

Ryan Fitzpatrick getting face masked on what would be the set-up pass for the game-winning field goal in the Dolphins-Raiders game

PARADISE, Nev.-- Fitzmagic reigns supreme. In what was surely the wildest game of the year for the Dolphins with playoff implications flowing through the game, they somehow gave the entire Miami fanbase both a heart attack and a serotonin rush in the matter of the final four minutes of the game.

While the game had been a pretty slow back-and-forth affair up to the final four minutes, it was must-watch television throughout. With both teams holding on to playoff hopes, it was surely the best game of the day thus far.

The teams had scored a combined 29 points after three quarters with the Raiders leading 16-13. On the first drive of the quarter, Miami ate up a ton of time on the clock, charging downfield for a drive that resulted in a Jason Sanders 22-yard field goal with 4:01 remaining.

On the following drive, Derek Carr hit Nelson Agholor for an 85-yard touchdown pass to give the Raiders a 22-16 lead, with Agholor breaking away from coverage. Daniel Carlson missed the extra point, which was huge.

On the very next drive, Myles Gaskin caught a 59-yard touchdown pass of his own and the Dolphins had the 23-22 lead with 2:55 remaining which really put pressure on Las Vegas.

The Raiders got the ball back and immediately drove downfield as well. A questionable pass interference call on Byron Jones got the Raiders into field goal position. They ran the clock all the way down to 19 seconds and Daniel Carlson nailed a field goal to give them the 25-23 edge.

The kickoff sailed through the end zone and the Dolphins had to hope that Ryan Fitzpatrick, who had replaced Tua Tagovailoa earlier on, could lead them to victory with just 19 ticks remaining.

On the first play, he heaved a pass in the air--while being face masked-- to Mack Hollins, who had broken away due to blown coverage, all the way down to the 40-yard line where he fell out of bounds with just twelve seconds remaining. The roughing the passer penalty on Arden Key added another fifteen yards to the play, getting them in field goal range.

Fitzpatrick heaved a pass out of bounds, and Jason Sanders came on to kick the field goal. He nailed the 44-yard drive, and the Dolphins somehow got the lead to 26-25 in the waning seconds.

With one second remaining, the Dolphins squibbed the kick, with the Raiders trying to lateral for the final desperation play. It was fumbled, the Dolphins recovered it, and sealed their victory, extending their chances of staying in a playoff spot.

My father, a Dolphins fan, had one thing to say. "Oh my god," said my dad. "All I can say is oh my god."

The win probability chart

With the win, the Dolphins continue to remain in a playoff spot while the Las Vegas Raiders were officially eliminated. This game was everything fans could have hoped for on Saturday night.