Kenyan Drake explained there was no way he was going to let Rob Gronkowski tackle him after scoring the sensational match-winning 'Miami Miracle' touchdown against the New England Patriots.
The Miami Dolphins running back was still in disbelief after his side stunned AFC East rivals the Patriots on the last play of the game on Sunday, recording a 34-33 home victory courtesy of a 69-yard lateral play as time expired.
Quarterback Ryan Tannehill completed a pass to Kenny Stills, who pitched to fellow wide receiver DeVante Parker as the crowd began to realise a stunning finish was possible, despite the last-ditch play rarely generating success.
Parker then found Drake, who cut inside from the right sideline and did the rest in a 52-yard burst into the endzone, helped by some crucial blocks as the final act saw him beat Gronkowski – the star Patriots tight end who was in on defense for the play – prompting ecstatic celebrations from players and fans alike.
Drake told reporters: "That was the last part of the play that was scripted, when I got the pitch. It was sandlot football.
"It was just me and Gronk. I couldn't let Gronk tackle me in that situation. I said, 'Look, sorry Gronk,' he's a great player but I got somewhere to be.
"It's just something that we practice every Saturday in walkthroughs. Obviously in a situation you never know what will happen, it was just by the grace of God we were able to hold our composure and just make a play."
Asked if there was a moment during the play he realised a touchdown was possible, Drake replied: "Until I got in the endzone.
"Honestly, I'm still sitting before you all and I still don't believe it. I just saw it was Gronk in front of me and I said 'I've got somewhere to be' – I had to get in the endzone."
I’ve literally given an arm and a leg to this game. I can’t explain this feeling but i love this game. Fall down a thousand times. Rise to the occasion. All glory above— Kenyan Drake™ (@KDx32) December 10, 2018
Quarterback Tannehill hailed the fight of the Dolphins (7-6) after a victory that kept them in the playoff hunt as he gave his take on an emotional moment.
"The play kind of got messed up," he said. "I saw Kenyan there, I said [to Parker], 'pitch it! pitch it!'
"He pitches it, Kenyan came back inside. Then I saw him and [Gronkowski] about 10 yards away. I said, 'Gronk's on the field? We got this!'
"Drake runs a 4.3 [40-yard dash] and Gronk probably runs a 4.6 or 4.7. We feel good about that matchup.
"So, yeah, it was pretty amazing. I was following behind and I actually just turned around and collapsed just with the emotion of the whole thing.
"There's no quit in me. There's no quit in this locker room."
Tannehill revealed the Dolphins had practiced that specific play as recently as Friday, scoring against the scout team, and head coach Adam Gase confirmed to reporters the play had worked exactly as it was drawn up.
He said: "They executed it! We have got to have something for those type of situations. We work on it every Friday and Saturday.
"It's boring because you might go three years without calling one of them. But these guys stuck with it, especially this year, and they executed that one for sure."
And Stills was aware he had been part of a play that will live long in the memory.
"The Miami Miracle sounds nice," he said.
16 de enero 2019
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|Brown desperate for England recall|
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|James is playing for Bayern future – Kovac|
|Wizards can compete for playoffs in LeBron-less East despite injuries - Brooks|
|Kyrgyzstan 3 Philippines 1: Lux hat-trick gives White Falcons third-place hope|
|South Korea 2 China 0: Son sets the standard as Bento´s men take top spot|
|Saudi Arabia v Qatar: Top spot on the line in Group E|
|Wasps pull off Fekitoa coup|
|Fresh injury woe for Real Madrid defender Vallejo|
|Home sweet home for Wozniacki as Stephens conquers Melbourne demons|
|Nadal: Victory over Ebden a step forward|
|Proteas rest Steyn and De Kock for opening ODIs|
|Nadal and Federer march on as rising stars prosper|
|Barcelona president Bartomeu convinced Valverde will stay|
|Inter forward Keita suffers thigh injury|
|Nadal races into third round with easy Ebden win|
|Kimmich ´perfect´ for Barcelona, says Xavi|
|Richardson and Nabi inspire Renegades´ rout of Sixers|
|This Liverpool isn´t a team of chokers – Mane|
|Central Coast Mariners 2 Melbourne City 1: Late Simon winner ends 10-match losing streak|
|Bryan backs Murray to return after hip resurfacing surgery|
|Scotland coach Townsend turns to trio of uncapped hookers|
|Spurs´ Aurier arrested on suspicion of assault, released without charge|
|That was a fireworks show - Warriors revel in record-breaking first quarter|
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|´Proud´ Messi recognises impact of team-mates after reaching 400 LaLiga goals|
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|Federer enjoys ´cat and mouse´ win over Evans|
|Wozniacki cruises through in Melbourne|
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|Warriors set NBA record, Butler´s 76ers rout Timberwolves|
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|Murray says he´ll ´probably´ have operation|
|Australian Open tribute for Andy Murray surprises brother Jamie|
|Warriors score NBA record 51 points in first quarter against Nuggets|
|Panthers owner Tepper doesn´t rule out Newton missing 2019 because of shoulder injury|
|De Ligt will be world´s best centre-back – Koeman|
|Ronaldo a ´perfect machine´, says Gattuso|
|Barcelona? I can´t say anything - Stuani|
|Silva upbeat about Man City title chances|
|Celtics youngsters say Irving´s callout ´came from a good place´|
|NFL playoffs: Patrick Mahomes v Tom Brady|
|NFL playoffs: Jared Goff v Drew Brees|
|Sixers sign Brewer to 10-day contract|
|Lozano and Morgan scoop CONCACAF awards|
|Lakers ´optimistic´ about LeBron injury|
|Giants produce mammoth fourth quarter against Nymburk|
|Austin FC to join MLS in 2021|
15 de enero 2019
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|Warrington sign England star Widdop|
|Gatland confident Wales can win Six Nations|
|Fulham sign Netherlands international Babel|