Jump to content

Week 17: Miami Dolphins (10-5) @ Buffalo Bills (12-3)


MIA @ BUF  

13 members have voted

  1. 1. Who wins?

    • Miami Dolphins
    • Buffalo Bills

This poll is closed to new votes

  • Please sign in or register to vote in this poll.
  • Poll closed on 01/03/2021 at 06:05 PM

Recommended Posts

Dolphins_Bills_Football.1.jpg?alias=stan

Well here it is.

Week 16 went pretty swell for us. Due to the results of some other games, Miami is now first, due to tiebreaker, among four 10-5 teams vying for three wildcard spots. If any of them lose, Miami is in the post-season regardless the result of this game.

Screw that.

This is a must-win game, I don't care about all that noise. The 68% projected chance to make the post-season even with a loss simply doesn't tell the whole story. Should Miami lose, Miami would need on of Baltimore, Cleveland, or Indianapolis to lose. Well, Baltimore plays Cincinnati (4-10-1), so probably no dice there. Indianapolis plays the Jaguars (1-14), who just clinched the #1 overall pick. While they'd love to play spoiler to the Colts, they're far too depleted to have a good shot. That would mean our playoff dreams would rest on the Steelers (12-3), who up to two quarters ago looked anemic, to knock off the Browns in Cleveland. This has by far the best chance to bail us out, but I'm thinking it's basically a coin-flip game that we can absolutely not rely on. EDIT: It seems the starting spread is Browns by 7, which means Las Vegas oddsmakers likely have some insider information that the Steelers will be resting some or all of their starters. This means we really need to win this one!

...

On to the actual matchup itself, this is a battle of two teams that are radically different now than our initial Week 2 meeting, which was a 31-28 victory for Buffalo. Since then, Buffalo's offense has been purring thanks to the sudden development of Josh Allen, who is now looking to be a Top 5 Quarterback in the league. While they don't have the running game to exploit our weak run defense, Allen is perhaps the biggest test to our elite pass defense we've had to face this season aside from Patrick Mahomes. In the first matchup, we were without Byron Jones for most of the afternoon, allowing him to throw for four touchdowns, the best game of his career at the time. If our secondary is completely healthy, however, we may have a better shot at limiting the Bills on offense.

Offensively for the Dolphins, for better or worse, Tua remains the starting Quarterback. While he has been shown to not take as many risks as Fitzpatrick, he's also been far safer with the ball too, which should help us if the game becomes a defensive battle. The Bills have improved defensively since our initial encounter, too, as star LB Tremaine Edmunds was out for the initial contest. The Dolphins must establish the run in order to be successful - the Bills also have struggled to contain the run at points this season, surrendering 4.7 yards per carry on the ground. If we can establish the ground game (which should hopefully be easier with Gaskin back at 100%), we may be able to open the play action passing attack for Tua Tagovailoa. We desperately need Devante Parker, who was sidelined for the last several weeks, back for this matchup. Hopefully Mike Gesicki, who was clearly not 100% versus Las Vegas, will be back to his usual self as well. This is not going to be an easy game for our offense for sure. But with the right game plan we may be able to move the ball. The question is - can we keep up with Josh Allen?

Ultimately I think we have a better shot than a lot of people are giving us. This is a division game. While the Bills are playing to hold on to the 2nd seed, the Dolphins are fighting for the right to be in the playoffs at all, so we will come out with the emotional advantage. Moreover, the near-loss versus Las Vegas should hopefully encourage the team to prepare better for this matchup. Finally, we're coming off a long week while the Bills played Monday night - and they still may be high off their 38-9 drubbing of the Patriots.

All things considered though, while I'd like to pick our Dolphins here, my mind is saying this will likely be a Buffalo win. I hope in that case the Steelers (or Jaguars, or Bengals) will deliver and knock off the Browns for us. I do think we're capable of winning this game, though. Should hopefully be a fun one to watch!

Miami 23

Buffalo 28

Link to post
Share on other sites

This is going to be vastly different than last time, IMO.  Neither X nor Jones were healthy, which resulted in Igbinoghene having to cover Diggs.  It didn't end well.  X is the best cover corner in the league this year, so being able to limit Diggs is huge against this offense.  Which brings me to my next point:

Cole Beasley got hurt last night.  It may not be enough to keep him out this next week, but it's something to monitor.  He's the type of 2nd option that gives us fits and would be a huge loss for the Bills.  Jones can cover anyone else on that team, and honestly, Needham probably can as well.  This defense could really give Allen fits if Beasley doesn't play.  

On offense, Parker HAS to play this week.  This WR corps is just so bad without him.  

If Beasley plays - Bills 31 - Fins 27

If Beasley doesn't play - Fins 27 - Bills 24

Link to post
Share on other sites
11 minutes ago, hrubes20 said:

Gross.

And this could still help aid the Dolphins. If, for example, the Steelers bench multiple starters and get off to quick and large deficit versus the Browns, the Bills could decide, in turn, bench many of their starters in the 2nd half against us. Not something we should be relying on, but if the Bills feel that they have the 2nd seed all but assured they may opt to bring some of their key players out of the game.

Link to post
Share on other sites
8 minutes ago, hrubes20 said:

Lots of rumblings that Buffalo is resting starters as well.  Supposed to be a press conference about it this afternoon.

I have to think the Bills will play their starters at least until they feel comfortable in a Pittsburgh defeat to the Browns.

I'd be utterly shocked if they announce they'll be benching key starters by default.

The #2/#3 seed essentially determines, if both teams win in the Wildcard round, whether the Bills will visit the Steelers or the other way around in Round 2. I can't see that being valueless to the Bills.

 

It would also be tossing in the towel on Josh Allen's slim MVP candidacy.

Link to post
Share on other sites
40 minutes ago, TheKillerNacho said:

I have to think the Bills will play their starters at least until they feel comfortable in a Pittsburgh defeat to the Browns.

I'd be utterly shocked if they announce they'll be benching key starters by default.

The #2/#3 seed essentially determines, if both teams win in the Wildcard round, whether the Bills will visit the Steelers or the other way around in Round 2. I can't see that being valueless to the Bills.

 

It would also be tossing in the towel on Josh Allen's slim MVP candidacy.

If I was a betting man, I would bet that they play Allen just long enough to break their team passing yardage record.  I think he needs 100 yards or something.  He's such a distant 3rd to Mahomes and Rodgers that the MVP stuff isn't relevant.  

Link to post
Share on other sites

This is great, the playoffs have already arrived: win or go home. Don't see the Browns, Colts or Ravens losing Sunday. 

Win or go home. 

Need a proper 1st quarter, the past two games have been terrible. Both times the defense played well on the first drive with a sweet 3 and out. Then the bonehead special teams did NOT field the punt, causing Miami to start deep in their own territory. Happened vs the Patriots then exact same thing happened again vs the Raiders. I was saying bad words to the TV.

If the other team is punting from their own 10-yd line, and you end up 1st and 10 from your own 22, you have screwed up a critical special teams play. 

 

Link to post
Share on other sites
27 minutes ago, FinSting said:

This is great, the playoffs have already arrived: win or go home. Don't see the Browns, Colts or Ravens losing Sunday. 

Win or go home. 

Need a proper 1st quarter, the past two games have been terrible. Both times the defense played well on the first drive with a sweet 3 and out. Then the bonehead special teams did NOT field the punt, causing Miami to start deep in their own territory. Happened vs the Patriots then exact same thing happened again vs the Raiders. I was saying bad words to the TV.

If the other team is punting from their own 10-yd line, and you end up 1st and 10 from your own 22, you have screwed up a critical special teams play. 

 

Very true.  ST unit has not looked great the past 3 games or so.  Need to tighten that up.

Link to post
Share on other sites

good luck guys, I am not sure if Bills will be starting players or not. I do see us with out 2 of the top 3 WR out for this game, diggs being the only one. Allen may play a half but nothing has been mentioned. I expect most of our defense to play the entire game though with a few exceptions 

I do have a questions just to guys in this forum about Tua. If for some reason he struggles and Is benched again for Fitz, do you guys consider using the texans pick on a qb like Fields if the Jets decide not to go qb? I ask only cause national media has brought it up.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

×
×
  • Create New...