Entering week 14, the Miami Dolphins needed to only beat the Titans and Jets to reduce their magic number to one. Now, things get a little more interesting.
The easiest route for the Miami Dolphins to the post-season was beating the Jets and Titans. Miami couldn't get the first part of that done losing to the Titans on Monday Night Football...in epic fashion.
What should have been an easy road to the postseason now means that Miami has to step in and do what many in the media say they can't do. They have to beat a good football team.
Miami will need to beat the Jets this weekend or they will potentially see the AFC East division slip from a three-game lead a few days ago to a one-game lead with the Bills hot on their heels. Buffalo has a pretty easy schedule ahead if they can get past the Cowboys this coming weekend.
Miami on the other hand has to beat the Cowboys, Ravens, and yes, the Bills. It isn't a cakewalk anymore. There is not a lot of room for error and the Dolphins have to play like their season is on the line.
The Dolphins held the playoffs, in fact, the number one seed in the AFC, in the palm of their hand but that isn't the case anymore. The pathway is still there and it hasn't changed. Beat the Jets, beat the Cowboys, and beat the Ravens and Miami is back in the driver's seat.
It would have been easier but there isn't anything anyone can do now to change that. The Dolphins need to feel a bit of pressure and now they will. There is no easy schedule ahead of them and even the Jets will be a tough home game on Sunday.
This is a good test for the Dolphins. This will clearly tell who they are as a team. It won't be easy but it shouldn't be. Miami now has to dig a little deeper and play a little harder if they want the division. If that doesn't motivate them to take a leap forward, nothing will.
On Monday, the Dolphins took a step backward. They need to take two steps forward and get themselves prepared for what lies ahead. Do that, and the division is in their grasp. Mike McDaniel said that the Dolphins were not coming into the 2023 season to win a few games and they were not coming into the season with the goal of simply making the playoffs. "We did that last year," McDaniel said. Now, it's time to prove that this team is different.
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