Dolphins foil Patriots' comeback bid; Broncos stay atop AFC

The Associated Press Updated: December 16, 2013 at 2:00 am • Published: December 15, 2013 0

MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. — Tom Brady's latest comeback bid came up short, and the Miami Dolphins helped their playoff chances with a 24-20 breakthrough victory Sunday over the AFC East-leading New England Patriots.

A fourth-down pass from Brady was intercepted by reserve safety Michael Thomas in the end zone with 2 seconds left, and Miami held on to win.

New England came into Sunday with a 10-3 record and with a win would have claimed the edge for home-field advantage throughout the playoffs based on an earlier win over Denver (11-3). Denver now retains the AFC's top seed.

The Patriots had mounted second-half rallies to win their past three games, and Brady moved them from their own 20 with 1:15 remaining to the Miami 14. But he threw three consecutive incompletions before Thomas sealed the third consecutive victory for the Dolphins (8-6), who improved to 5-2 since tackle Jonathan Martin left the team in a bullying scandal.

Miami snapped a streak of seven consecutive losses against the Patriots (10-4).

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AP NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org and http://twitter.com/AP_NFL

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Follow Steven Wine on Twitter: http://twitter.com/Steve_Wine

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