If the Miami Dolphins are truly focused on winning more than just the AFC East, they must continue to beat the teams they are supposed to. Tennessee is one of those teams.
On Sunday, the Ravens pulled off an overtime win that would have left Miami in the first seed heading into tonight's game. The Ravens, instead became the first AFC team to reach double-digit wins. Miami can do the same on Monday night.
Sunday worked out well for the Dolphins. The Jaguars fell to the Browns and the Chiefs lost to the Bills. Both of those teams are now two games behind the Dolphins and Ravens for the top AFC seed.
Miami and Baltimore will play on New Year's eve and that game could settle the AFC top spot once and for all.
What the Dolphins have not done is lock down the AFC East and that has to be the team's priority.
Buffalo will play the Cowboys next weekend and if they lose and Miami beats the Titans tonight and the Jets next week, Miami wins the division. That being said, the margin for error for Miami is extremely thin. Yes, they have a three-game lead with five games to go but three of those games are against the Cowboys, Ravens, and Bills.
A loss to the Titans would be nearly devastating and while the Jets don't pose a huge threat to Miami next week, they rolled over a Texans team that was surging. The Jets put up more than 30 points for the first time this season.
I'm not saying the Dolphins are going to lose to the Jets or the Titans tonight just that the Dolphins have to approach each game as if one loss could derail their season.
Last week on Hard Knocks, Mike McDaniel pointed out the Dolphins were 8-3 last season before dropping five in a row. With five games left in 2023, the Dolphins want to avoid a similar ending to their season and that means taking care of the Titans on Monday night.
Sunday worked out pretty well for the Dolphins and a win tonight would give them a 3-game lead not just over the Bills but also most of the Wild Card contenders as well.