Finally, the shoe is on the other foot! It is the Patriots who are in 3rd place in the AFC East and they are trying to be at best the spoiler to our Dolphins goal to make the playoffs. Last year at seasons end Miami did considerable damage to the Patriots goal at a SB run when we went to New England and knocked them off the last game of the season a game, they wanted badly in order to get a bye week and not have to play the following week. Well as we know Miami won a rare game up in New England a fitting end to a very pleasant and surprising 2019 season for Miami.
New England went on to lose to the Titans in the wild card round and then they imploded as the off season saw the departure of Tom Brady after 19 seasons playing with the Patriots and HC Bill Belechick, Brady was ready to move on as the relationship had soured and Brady sought out a new challenge in Tampa Bay.
The Patriots were strapped (cash wise) and had to play out this season with what they had. They did sign Cam Newton and in the first game of the season our Dolphins drew the unlucky straw to play them first with no tape on how they would play. Miami lost that game as the Patriots ran effectively with Cam Newton and the Dolphins Defense was unable to stop them.
Now with months of tape we know what they do well, and they know what we do well and this game can go either way!
On to the matchup
New England @ Miami
- Where: Hard Rock Stadium (Miami Gardens, FL)
- When: Sunday, December 20th
- Time: 1:00 p.m. ET
- Point Spread: Miami -1.5
- O/U 41.5
- TV: CBS
On to the match ups
The matchup: on Offense
The New England Patriots are ranked 24th in total offense averaging 332.9 yards per game on offense, scoring 21.3 points a game while Miami ranks 27th on offense averaging 323.4 yards per game on offense, scoring 25.4 points per game (Up from last week) 15th in the league in scoring offense.
The matchup: on Defense
The New England Patriots defense is ranked 9th in total defense and is giving up on average 342.5 yards per game and allowing 21.5 points per game, while Miami is ranked 18th in total defense (Down from last week) giving up on average 362.3 yards per game 18.8 points per game (2nd in the league).
For the Dolphins:
Miami needs to prove that they can win against a good team (AT HOME) as their 4-3 home record is not good (More In Future Article) the Dolphins have been beset by injuries to their RB’s, To WR and Top TE (Who most likely will not play Sunday) but they will most likely get back Kyle Van Noy their defensive leader and their Top RB Myles Gaskins.
The Dolphins need to continue to try and run the ball despite their lack of ability to do so effectively (Something they need to address this offseason!) Tua will most likely not have his favorite pass catching TE Mike Gasicki who had a shoulder injury last week, but the Dolphins have been playing coy on their TE and have him listed as “questionable” on their injury report for Sunday’s game.
Tua is making strides in his development and even though he is playing a more conservative game he is protecting the ball and in the last two games he has averaged 306 yards passing with 3 passing TD’s and one rushing TD so he is coming along just fine.
He will have his hands full going against BB of the Patriots who has a 21-5 record against rookie quarterbacks.
He totally baffled leading Rookie of the year QB Justin Herbert as they blew away the Chargers and handed Herbert his worse outing of his young rookie season…
Patriots 45, Chargers 0
Herbert’s stats: 26-for-53, 209 yards, 2 INT, 3 sacks (43.7 QB rating)
That was Justin Herbert’s only game this season without a touchdown pass and his only game where he completed less than 50 percent of his passes. Hopefully Tua will fare better or this will be a game he could be benched again, due to the importance of this game?
I feel Miami needs to play more up tempo as Tua has looked his best so far this season playing that style of football. This should be a good game and a sign of where the Dolphins are late in the season as this is the toughest part of the schedule and they already dropped a game last week to KC. Miami is barely holding onto the 7 spot in the playoffs and can’t afford a loss as they cannot win the Division as Buffalo rapped that up earlier today!
For New England Patriots:
New England will not make the playoffs but can still overtake 2nd place within the division by beating Miami and winning out. I would think payback can be on their minds from the loss late last season up in New England.
The Patriots have a very good defense, and they can run the ball well, that is what Miami needs to be able to do in order to win in December and Miami is not good at running the ball and even though they have done better of late the Defense is still susceptible against the run and if they cannot stop the Patriots run game and a huge part of that is Cam Newton than it will be a long day!
This game concerns me, and I hate this year end schedule but in order to win in this league you need to beat the good teams and this young Dolphins team just might need more time until they reach that point. I do expect a win and I am hoping for a playoff Berth, but it will not come easy.
If Miami can run effectively and stop the run and force Cam Newton to throw the ball maybe X will end the game with double digit INT’s!
Miami has already reached expectations for this 2020 season IMO and I am not holding any loss from here on out against them as I truly look towards the future as the future is so bright and how appropriate for the team from the “Sunshine State”!
Computer Pick: Miami 26, New England 20
TDS Pick: Miami 17, New England 14 (My Homer Pick)
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