The Miami Dolphins won’t say the word “playoffs”. Not at all. It’s a word that the front office will not utter in their hallways and the players won’t speak in the locker room. It’s a one game at a time attitude.
For fans however, the reality of making the post-season for the first time since 2008 is becoming something that is at least potentially possible but standing in the Dolphins way are the Baltimore Ravens and it wouldn’t be the first time that Baltimore squashed any hopes for the Dolphins chances late in the season.
Since 2008 the Ravens and Dolphins have faced each other six times with the Dolphins losing five of those games. Miami finally got a victory against Baltimore last season long after the Dolphins playoff hopes were eliminated.
In 2014 the Dolphins met the Ravens in December. Miami carried a 7-5 record into the game with a chance to control their own fate with three games remaining. Miami lost 28-13 and the remainder of the season was a 1-2 finish and no playoffs.
In 2013 the Dolphins lost early in the season on their way to an 8-8 finish and 2010 saw the Dolphins enter Ravens week with a 4-3 record. The Dolphins would finish 7-9 on the season. In 2008 the Dolphins played the Ravens in October losing 27-13 but it was the Dolphins final playoff appearance that would end in the first round.
With the Dolphins having won the AFC East, a rematch between the two teams would take place in the first round of the post-season and the Ravens had enough film to stop the Wild Cat and eliminate the Dolphins from the post-season.
Back to the present day the Dolphins are riding a six game winning streak. The longest streak since 2005 when Nick Saban’s team finished the season with six in a row but missing the playoffs. If the Dolphins can win on Sunday, the 7 game streak will be the longest in over 30 years.
Both the Dolphins and the Ravens are hoping to extend their season and this weeks game could help decide future tie-breakers and possibly the AFC North division race. It’s an important game for certain.
The Dolphins winning streak is the 2nd longest in the NFL this season only behind the Dallas Cowboys 10 game streak. More impressive is the fact that the Dolphins started their streak after starting the season 1-4.
Whether the streak continues this week or not could hinge on the health of two offensive lineman. Branden Albert and Laremy Tunsil. Both players missed last weekends game. Mike Pouncey is expected to miss Sunday as he deals with a hip injury.
Baltimore has been a thorn in the Dolphins side for quite a while. Since the Browns became the Ravens in 1997, the teams have met 13 times with the Ravens winning seven of those games. Miami could move a game closer with a win on Sunday. And perhaps a little closer to a post-season possibility. The Dolphins are currently the 6th seed in the AFC.