ORCHARD PARK, New York — Though it took much longer than expected, the Buffalo Bills are finally starting to show elements of the "ground-and-pound" running attack coach Rex Ryan had envisioned when he first took over.
Turns out, the Bills aerial attack isn't bad either when receiver Sammy Watkins is healthy enough to take the field.
Watkins teamed with running backs LeSean McCoy and Karlos Williams in combining for four touchdowns and 390 of Buffalo's 420 yards in a 33-17 win over the Miami Dolphins on Sunday. Watkins, with 168 yards receiving, McCoy (112 rushing) and Williams (110 rushing) became the first Bills trio to top 100 yards in the same game in team history.
It wasn't lost on Ryan that the outburst came the first time in five weeks that all three — plus starting quarterback Tyrod Taylor — were healthy enough to play in the same game.
"We have a lot of talent, and unfortunately, we had so many injuries that we haven't necessarily seen them," Ryan said. "So let us be healthy and then judge us for who we are."
The Bills (4-4) were more than good enough to route the AFC East rival Dolphins (3-5).
Coming off its bye week, Buffalo snapped a two-game skid and won for the first time in four home games.
The Dolphins have lost two straight after winning their first two under interim coach Dan Campbell, who took over after Joe Philbin was fired.
Campbell says it's too early to start counting out the Dolphins, even though they dropped to 0-4 against their AFC East rivals.
"It's like I told the team, all we have to do is get a little momentum back," Campbell said.
Here's a number of things that stood out:
DELETING INSTAGRAM: Watkins could finally stop apologizing some two weeks after using his Instagram account in responding to critics — he called then "losers" — for questioning whether he's capable of playing through injuries.
Despite a sore left ankle, the second-year player had the most yards receiving for the Bills since Terrell Owens had 197 in 2009.
"I felt like I owed it to the fans, to the team, and to the organization," said Watkins, who added that he deleted his Instagram account.
GRIMES GRIMACES: Dolphins cornerback Brent Grimes had difficulty keeping up with Watkins in getting beaten on two deep passes.
Grimes lost his footing while covering Watkins, who made a juggling 63-yard catch up the left sideline in the second quarter. That set up Williams' 11-yard run that put the Bills ahead 19-7.
After the Dolphins closed to 19-14, Watkins had Grimes beaten by a step and didn't break stride in catching Taylor's 44-yard touchdown pass late in the third quarter.
"I messed up," Grimes said. "They can make big plays, so I take the blame for it. I didn't bring my 'A' game today. And hats off to the Bills. Sammy Watkins had a great game."
BOBBLES: Dolphins quarterback Ryan Tannehill's day got off to a terrible start. On the first play from scrimmage, center Mike Pouncey's shotgun snap slipped through Tannehill's hands and bounced through the back of the end zone for a safety.
Tannehill then lost another fumble at midfield in the third quarter, when he was sacked and stripped of the ball by linebacker Jerry Hughes.
DENIED: Down 19-7 and facing first-and-goal at the 1 with 2 seconds left in the first half, Campbell elected to go for the touchdown rather than attempt a field goal. The gamble failed as Tannehill's pass intended for tight end Dion Sims was batted down by cornerback Stephon Gilmore.
Trouble was, Campbell acknowledged the Dolphins could have had more time on the clock had he call a timeout two plays earlier after Miller was tackled inbounds.
"Valid question," Campbell said. "In hindsight, you'd certainly call a timeout there."
REX RETURNS: Ryan prepares to face his former team on Thursday, when the Bills travel to play the New York Jets (5-3). Ryan spent six seasons in the Big Apple before being fired following a 4-12 finish last season.
"I can't stand them," Ryan said, when asked about the Jets, before adding: "No, I'm just kidding."