Nov. 15, 2012; Orchard Park, NY, USA; Miami Dolphins running back Reggie Bush (22) takes to the field before a game against the Buffalo Bills at Ralph Wilson Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Timothy T. Ludwig-US PRESSWIR
This game means a lot for the Dolphins, it means their whole season. They are underdogs, and most analysts are writing the Dolphins out, saying they will get blown out. But there are a few, who could actually name players on the team who know that this game will be closer then one thinks. For me, I’m not too sure. I would love for it to be close or even come out with a win, but there are a few people who need to play a key role in today’s game.
Jimmy Wilson will need to play his best football, possibly in his career. He will most likely be lined up with Wes Welker all day in the slot, can he keep up with him? Yes Welker is going to get his catches, and possibly for a touchdown or two, but Wilson can not get burned on the big plays like he has a few times this season.
The Dolphins have been “Bend but don’t break” all season. Teams have been able to go one twenty yard line to the other twenty yard line a lot easier then it should be for most of the year. But within that twenty the Dolphins defense steps up, it has done a great job at forcing teams into field goals. Earlier in the season they were also able to get some turnovers in the red zone. They will need to get a turnover or two to get momentum on the Phins side. Dropping pick sixes or not jumping on fumbles wont cut it against the Patriots.
Finally, the offensive line will be a game changer. A offensive line that has had multiple first picks invested in them, a line that took 5 years to put together. Can it show up? If the O-line can play up to its potential then the Dolphins can stay in this game. There will be receivers running open against this 27th ranked pass defense. Tannehill WILL find these receivers only if he gets the time that this O-line can give him. If the Dolphins can be mean on that front it will also open up Reggie, and Daniel’s running lanes. The running game will be huge, the more they run the ball the longer Brady is on the sidelines.