The Miami Dolphins blew out the Denver Broncos in a 70-20 win on Sunday and almost broke the NFL’s record for most points scored in a game.
The Dolphins had an opportunity to attempt to break the record by scoring a touchdown or tie the record by kicking a field goal. The team to score the most points in a game was the Chicago Bears in 1940 when the team shut out the Washington Redskins 73-0, according to CBS Sports.
Instead, head coach Mike McDaniel had backup quarterback Mike White take a knee on the last play of the Dolphins’ final drive. When asked after the game why he didn’t attempt to break the record, McDaniel said “that’s not really what I’m about.”
“It felt like chasing points and chasing a record — that’s not what we came to the game to do,” he said in his postgame press conference. “That doesn’t have a bearing on the overall season outcome, and I just didn’t — I saw it as 10 times out of 10, you concede and kneel down in those situations because there was an attainable record that was cool, but the message that I thought it would send wasn’t really in line with how I view things.”
Miami’s 70 points is still the most since the Redskins beat the New York Giants 72-41 in 1966, ESPN reported.
In Sunday’s victory, quarterback Tua Tagovailoa threw for 309 yards and four touchdowns almost a year to the day after fans and NFL experts were urging him to retire due to his concussion scares.
While the win was historic, it’s not the biggest blowout in the history of NFL regular season wins.
What are the biggest blowouts in NFL history?
Here are the five biggest regular season and playoff blowouts in NFL history since the league officially merged with the AFL in 1970:
1. Oct. 18, 2009: New England Patriots 59, Tennessee Titans 0
The biggest blowout in NFL history unsurprisingly belongs to the New England Patriots and Tom Brady. Well, technically, it’s a tie with the 1976 Los Angeles Rams.
Brady threw for five touchdowns in the second quarter, according to the Analyst. Up 45-0, the Patriots set the record for the largest lead at halftime.
2. Dec. 4, 1976: Los Angeles Rams 59, Atlanta Falcons 0
The Los Angeles Rams were the first to hold the record for the biggest blowout and shutout. The Rams scored six rushing touchdowns in that game and only one passing touchdown from backup quarterback James Harris. All of those rushing touchdowns were for less than nine yards, according to the Analyst.
The Falcons were held to under 100 yards on offense.
3. Dec. 9, 2012: Seattle Seahawks 58, Arizona Cardinals 0
In quarterback Russell Wilson’s first season as a starter, the Seattle Seahawks shut out their NFC West rival, the Arizona Cardinals. But most of the touchdowns came from the Seahawks’ rushing attack, specifically Marshawn Lynch, who ran for three touchdowns and 128 yards that game, according to the Analyst.
Running back Leon Washington also scored, and two defensive touchdowns from cornerback Richard Sherman and linebacker Malcolm Smith added to the final score.
4. Jan. 15, 2000: Jacksonville Jaguars 62, Miami Dolphins 7
The Jacksonville Jaguars’ demolishing of the Dolphins in the divisional round is the largest blowout in NFL playoff history, according to the NFL.
Both starting quarterback Mark Brunell and backup Jay Fiedler threw for two touchdowns. The Jaguars also scored off a 16-yard fumble recovery from Tony Brackens in the first quarter and a 90-yard rushing touchdown from Fred Taylor, according to Pro Football Reference.
5. Oct. 23, 2011: New Orleans Saints 62, Indianapolis Colts 7
In a rematch of the Super Bowl in 2010, the New Orleans Saints beat up the Indianapolis Colts, who were without quarterback Peyton Manning.
The Saints capitalized on the Colts’ two turnovers, scoring a touchdown on each, including a pick-six, according to ESPN. The pass intended for former BYU wide receiver Austin Collie was intercepted by Leigh Torrence and returned 42 yards for a touchdown. Saints quarterback Drew Brees threw for five touchdowns in the game.